Last night our daughter woke us up for a midnight feeding. While we were taking care of her, my wife saw a small, black spider scurry across the wall. My mission instantly changed from diaper changer to spider exterminator. For my wife, even a dirty diaper and fussy baby takes a lower priority when there are spiders around. You see, my wife suffers from a mild case of arachnophobia, the fear of spiders.
I tried to grab the spider with a tissue but it fell on the floor near our bed. I wish I had just smashed it on the wall, then cleaned it up – at least I would have killed it. Instead, I spent the next half hour searching in vain. I moved the bed, took off the sheets, removed the pillow cases, etc. The spider was gone. After a thorough search, we went back to sleep.
Most fears are based on emotion, not facts. Even though the likelihood of a spider bite is not very high, many people have an uncontrollable fear of spiders. There are only a handful of poisonous spiders in the US, and most of them are non-aggressive and avoid human contact. If you can learn to recognize which spiders are dangerous, try to avoid areas where poisonous spiders may live, and exercise caution around spiders, you will probably never suffer a spider bite. Spiders should have your respect, but there is no need to fear them.
Chrometophobia – the Fear of Money
Many people fear money. The term for this is Chrometophobia (also Chrematophobia). Money is a part of everyone’s daily life, and there are many reasons why people fear it. Money can make people uncomfortable, it cause stress and anxiety, and it can make people feel out of control. In many cases, these fears can be conquered.
How to conquer your fear of money
Understand why you fear money. The first step in overcoming your fears is to recognize your fear and understand why you fear it. It could be the fear of not having enough, the burden of debt, or other reasons. Think about why money causes you fear or stress.
Learn more about money. We fear things we do not understand. Learn about money by talking about it with your spouse or friends, read books, magazines, or websites, or watch financial shows on TV. The more you know about money, the less you have to fear.
Address your fears. Just like a spider, you should respect money, but not fear it. If living paycheck to paycheck is causing you anxiety, try saving up enough money to get you ahead one paycheck. If you feel crushed by debt, build a repayment plan to pay your debt off more quickly (see the debt snowball plan). The more quickly you address your fear of money, the more quickly you can overcome your fears.
Control money, don’t let money control you. Setting up a budget is a good way to get in control of your financial situation. Start by tracking your income and expenses for a month, then try to begin making a plan. You can use a simple spreadsheet or a budgeting program like You Need a Budget to make the job easier.
Seek professional help. Sometimes working on a problem by yourself is not enough. If you have tried multiple fixes and still haven’t found a cure for your fear of money, then you may need to seek professional help.
You can conquer your fear of money. Most problems that people have with money are based on emotions and not facts. If you can follow these steps above, you can address your fears and learn to control money instead of letting money control you. You don’t have to like money, but you don’t have to fear it either.