Chronophobia (from Greek chronos – time and phobia – fear) is the fear of time. It’s characterized by an irrational yet persistent fear of time and of the passing of time.
If you have chronophobia, you might not even suspect something is wrong. With other types of phobia, everything is clear: You feel uncomfortable in a closed space, freak out at the sight of a spider, or can’t make yourself fly overseas to visit your grandma. Often you can help yourself by simply avoiding the object of your fear.
Chronophobia is different. You can’t get rid of the fear because time is life and you can’t avoid life. The object of your fear is always with you.
I feel as though I’m a dot of life stuck between the two abysses of the future and the past. Thin, barely visible threads stretch from me to the time: dreams connect me to the future, and memories, to the past, but they are so delicate, and I tear them often. When I can’t sense these threads, I hang in the dark.
Even when it’s not the case, I feel that with every moment my time on Earth comes to the end. Yes, I’m young, but with every moment I’m dying; I feel how the time slips through my hands, like sand, and I can’t slow it down.
When fear overwhelms me, I scroll my Instagram feed, watch TikTok, turn on TV – flood my brain with useless data to make myself less aware of the passing of life.
It is not the best decision, though. American Medical Association suggests hypnotherapy, NLP, and other mind-body techniques (Yoga, Pranayama, Meditation) to treat chronophonia. For someone who’s afraid of time, the thought of spending five minutes meditating, i.e. doing nothing, is horrible. I guess I could make myself… if only I wanted.
But I don’t. Each coin has two sides, and the fear of time makes me productive. It’s what my husband loves in me, although he doesn’t know what it is. Chronophobia makes me persevere and motivates me to do everything I do. Perhaps I could get rid of it, but with it I would most likely lose this passion for life and this unrelenting wish to act.
No, thank you.
You have to pay for everything, and fear is not such a high price.