Chrometophobia is the extreme fear of money. Also known as chrematophobia, it encompasses everything from the fear of spending money and the fear of thinking about money, to even the fear of touching money.
It combines the Greek word chermato, which means “money,” and the Greek word phobos, which means “fear.”
The fear is more complicated than it seems. Rather than a straight or more regular phobia such as spiders or snakes, fear of money can be related to the pressures of actually managing money. Those who have less money are also prone to suffering chrometophobia, thinking about how little the money they have will make them feel anxious and will become their focus which will affect their lives.
What Does It Look Like?
Symptoms and scenarios of a chrometophobia include:
- Extreme hesitance to think about money – even when you need to complete a task relating to funds
- Refusal to touch money
Essentially, chrometophobia takes this ordinary fear of money and spending to the next level. We spoke to Charlotte Balbier, a Mindset Coach to speak on this phenomenon and to deep dive into what this fear of money really means, what causes it, and how you can overcome it.
Coping with Irrational Thoughts
Charlotte Balbier works with female creatives and high achieving entrepreneurs who are ready to invest in their self-development and want a mentor who has the experience and expertise to support them on their journey to financial freedom.
Fear of money – or the lack of it – and a bad money mindset, are issues that come up a lot with my clients. However, it has been my own experience of chrometophobia that has taught me the most and given me the tools to help others with it.
Growing up, my mum raised me on her own and we didn’t have much at all. I was very loved and never went without the necessities, but luxuries were just that – a luxury. As a teenager and adult my life changed rather drastically, and I was surrounded by the wealth and success from both my Mum’s business ventures and my own. I built and sold 7-figure brands, which always ensured I had more money than I needed and thus I rarely feared not having it.
“This fear (Chrometophobia) took over my life and my thoughts became so irrational.”
After selling my brand I experienced some mental health issues and also the breakdown of my marriage. This had a huge financial impact on my life as I was not able to work for some time and this ate into my hard-earned savings. I suddenly went from a healthy and abundant approach to money to scarcity and, for the first time in my life, chrometophobia.
This fear took over my life and my thoughts became so irrational. I would lie awake all night worrying that I would never work again and lose my house. As a newly single Mum, thoughts like this made me even more petrified. These feelings were further amplified by the fact I was not in a good mental health space – this, my marriage breakdown and the money fear all just fed into each other in a toxic cycle.
It was only when I went back to work and started to earn money for myself again that things started to improve. It was as if I suddenly woke up and remembered who I was; a strong, independent and very resourceful businesswoman who is more than capable of providing an income to support both myself and my little boy. I had found myself again.
How To Overcome Fear of Money
Charlotte found these actionable steps really helpful in her abundance recovery:
#1 Money mindset and positive affirmation work
“I religiously noted down my money mantras daily and listened to positive money affirmations each night.”
#2 Practicing gratitude on a new level of grateful
“Instead of worrying about what I didn’t have, I focused on what I did have.”
#3 Levelling up life and surroundings
“Going into fear mode had meant I was living in lack. Just upgrading my surroundings – new bits for the house, a lovely new lipstick or a fancy and expensive bath oil – made all the difference. I stopped thinking about the pennies as the abundant me never did that.”
#4 Visualising a higher self
“I showed up, and am still showing up, as her every single day, even when I don’t want to!”
Check out Charlotte’s work on her Instagram.