I first came across the word “Chrometophobia” from a post written by fellow Canadian personal finance blogger, Jessica Moorhouse. She is the host of an amazing podcast called Mo’Money which featured an episode with yours truly. If you haven’t already given it a listen, now’s the time.
So about this chrometophobia thing- sounds weird, doesn’t it? Sounds like a fear of the web browser, Google Chrome. But it’s not. Chrometophobia is the abnormal and persistent fear of money.
As much I love making money and saving it (what personal finance blogger doesn’t), I am scared and annoyed with spending it. I can definitely relate with Jess because I am also a fellow anti-shopper. I don’t like shopping in general, but I do like online shopping for its convenience. I suppose if you enjoy shopping and/or you’re a compulsive shopper, it can be dangerous.
So not only am I quite shy, introverted and have social anxiety, I have anxiety from money.
Yes, I am one Nervous Nelly.
Even when I have the money saved up for it, I get anxious and nervous when I’m spending anything over $50. I distinctly remember going clothes shopping with my mom for my first professional job and felt my heart beating faster when I realized I would be spending several hundred dollars on a whole new wardrobe. I couldn’t go to an office job in sweatpants, so buying business casual clothes was in order. The amount of money spent for the amount of clothes purchased was reasonable. I was buying several outfits to last me a week and a pair of shoes, not just one outfit or one pair of shoes.
But it still scared the crap out of me.
I get more annoyed when I’m spending money on items that are necessary such as groceries or a toothbrush. I know I have to eat and I don’t want to have tooth decay, so of course I have to purchase these things. There’s no way around it. I can’t barter for these items.
But get this.
I get this satisfaction, some weird sort of high, practically euphoric when I pay off my credit card balance in full . It makes me happy seeing $0.00 when I log into my account.
Insert fist pump here.
I get satisfaction when I purchase something on sale with a coupon or coupon code if I’m online shopping or when I’m able to price match an item at the grocery store.
Again insert fist pump here.
I get really annoyed if I have to pay for something that’s overpriced – but unfortunately sometimes there is no way around it.
I suppose I’m not a total chrometophobe, but I seem to have this relationship with money where it can sometimes intimidate me.
There’s always this fear of never having enough to pay for the basic comforts of life. There have been long periods in my life of unemployment and underemployment. I was barely making any money, but I still managed to put aside a tiny amount each month. I was lucky enough to be living rent-free with my parents at the time. Just because I did have a bit of help from my parents here and there though, doesn’t make me a mooch or mean that I’m horrible with money.
Quite the opposite, in fact.
It’s just I’ve had some rough financial patches in my life that were the result of rough career patches.
Even though I’m in a much better place financially, there is still this underlying fear that I could wind up in that same situation again. Maybe not right away, but in the near future. Who knows? Nobody can predict the future.
I am constantly checking my credit card balances and my bank accounts. I am constantly tracking, updating and tweaking my budget.
Wait a sec, isn’t that typical of a personal finance nerd/blogger, anyway?
But I think the extreme emotions and symptoms behind it are more of a chrometophobe. I feel I do get shortness of breath, have rapid breathing and an irregular heartbeat from time to time when thinking about money, especially when it is a significantly large amount. Even if I know it’s a smart purchase or a smart investment, just the sheer amount of it alone can make my emotions run wild. Money does affect our day-to-day lives, hence it can affect the way we feel. It can change your life for better or worse. It can change how you are as a person overall, for better or worse.
Do you feel you may have chrometophobia in one way or another?
This is more of a side note, but I started a Facebook group last month called: Do What You Love. Love What You Do. The aim of the group is to talk about finding a career that works for you, finding your passion, can you make money from your passion, online business, entrepreneurship, career changes and networking. I’d love for you to join and share your thoughts and experiences on the topics mentioned. Click HERE for the link.