Are You Suffering from Chronophobia and Anticipatory Anxiety?

fear of future
Image by S. Hermann & F. Richter from Pixabay

I don’t need more to worry about these days, but I recently read about a reported increase in fear of the future by therapists and mental health providers. I did some reading and found that the official names for those fears are chronophobia and anticipatory anxiety. If you’re not fearful of reading more about it, proceed.

Chronophobia – like all phobias – manifests as an extreme, one that can cause obsessive and debilitating behavior. It is a fear of time and mostly fear of time moving forward. That fear often comes from the unknown, and the future is the great unknown.

For some people, the fear of the future is based on a fear of failing in that future.

Anticipatory anxiety seems to be defined as pretty much the same thing: being nervous about future events where the outcome is unknown.

Some of the warning signs of these mental health issues are problems eating, sleep disorders, and muscle tension. Aren’t those just descriptions of how we all feel all the time? Hopefully not, but…

Fear causes inner pain and body pain perceptions. We often try to numb the pain with substances and behaviors that seem to have a temporary effect but often have a longer-term negative effect.

I’m not a professional but I point you in this post to some articles with coping suggestions.  I channel some of my anxiety, stress, or fears into my walks in nature. I think writing also helps, though those things sometimes both inspire and hinder my writing.

If you made it to this point in the post, at least you didn’t fear reading about your fears.  And acceptance is the goal at the end of the acceptance cycle, so good for you!




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A lifelong educator on and off the Internet. Random by design and predictably irrational. It's turtles all the way down. Dolce far niente.

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