Honestly, What’s Your Financial Fear?

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Handwritten note by Donald Glover on hotel stationery.

Don’t worry, Donald; you’re nothing like Tyrese. We bet he’s never even used hotel stationery. (Who has?)

Halloween is right around the corner, so “fear” is on a lot of people’s minds. But do you know what can be the scariest thing of all? Honesty.

(Well, zombies then honesty.)


Last week, Donald Glover (actor, musician, general Renaissance man) made waves when he Instagrammed some personal notes about real-life issues he’s afraid of. However, Glover’s always been open; the outro of his debut album (a spoken-word piece) explains why while being refreshingly honest.

As bloggers, our situations aren’t entirely dissimilar from his. We share our own stories too, hoping that they’ll connect and help you, the reader. So, this week, we asked our bloggers our most serious burning question to date: What’s a financial fear you honestly have? Check out what they came up with.

Ashley Norwood

People are living longer now, so retiring at 65 may mean having to support myself on my savings for 30 (or more) years. I’m terrified that I’m not saving enough to ensure that I’m comfortable in my latter years. With student loans, a car loan, a mortgage, and a daughter (who is more expensive than all of them), I just don’t know what I’m going to do. I sure don’t want to be working into my 90s—if I make it that long.

Shane McNichol

My biggest fear is finding myself 10, 20, or 30 years from now stuck in a career that doesn’t interest or excite me at all. Because I’m so worried about this possibility, at each and every point in my job search and professional life, I’m conscious of what the future holds. One bad decision can lead to others, but good ideas snowball too.

Sarah Barker

My biggest fear is that I have not been a good enough financial role model for my kids. Although I am far from exemplary in terms of my money savviness, I am working to instill the basics in them: pay cash whenever possible, don’t borrow what you can’t afford to pay back, look for a meaningful career with a decent paycheck, and save like you might live to be a hundred (like your great-grandmother Nellie did).

Brigit Bauma

I’m not afraid of not getting a job. Not to be cocky, because I’m really not, but I think that I’ll be able to get one. However, I’m scared about getting the RIGHT job. If I don’t get a job that I’m meant to be in right away, will I be stuck there forever? No advancement, no raises, no looking elsewhere, just stuck. I’d stay because it was “safe.” And I don’t want to be like that. I want to advance myself and be more, be something bigger—for my family and my community. And it’s scary when you don’t know if it will work out.

Ryan Lane

Pretty soon, I’m going to become a father for the first time. And while I’m incredibly excited by this, I’m also incredibly frightened by all the costs—especially the paying-for-college ones. After all, every day I not only write about that stuff for a living, but I also write about that stuff for a living. I’ve always saved money; will I be able to grow that enough to pay for school when its cost inflates 8% every year? I like to think these issues will be resolved by the time my kid turns 18 (yikes! Now, there’s a scary mental image). Then again, I bet that’s what people who had kids 18 years ago thought too …

Carmen Guzmán

My biggest financial fear is definitely revolving my life around my finances. I don’t think money should be a priority in my life or why I live my life. So, if you see me money crazed, you have permission to slap some sense into me.

Anna Marden

I’ve been in the mindset that my student loan debt prevents me from doing all of the adventurous things I feel like I’m supposed to do in my 20s. I’m watching my friends move abroad, travel extensively, or take the risk of moving to a new city without a job lined up. I love Boston and I love my friends here, but I have a strong desire to go out and experience more of the world. If there’s any time I’m going to do this, it should be soon. I am now trying to save up as much as possible so I can make a big change within the next year and not get trapped by my student debt.

Diane Melville

I remember how terrifying it was to rent my first apartment after college. I was afraid of losing my job, not being able to pay the rent, and ending up moving back home. It didn’t help that I was working on my own company at the time too! I got over the fear by storing away money in savings for “rainy days,” just in case something were to happen where I’d need that financial cushion. Now, I’m fear free!

All right, readers, now it’s your turn. Conquer your fears by getting them out in the open in the comments.

(Photo: @childishness)

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  1. Sasha October 30, 2013 / 12:10 pm

    Financial Fear: Still paying off college when I’m tucking my grand kids into bed.

    • Ryan Lane October 31, 2013 / 8:41 am

      That is a scary one, Sasha! Thanks for sharing!

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