Hi, my name is The Wordsmythe and I’m papyro-ergophobic!
It’s official! I hate paperwork! Ok, so maybe ‘hate’ is such a strong word but I have an aversion to paper work. It’s such a chore, such tedium! I’d much rather be getting on with fun stuff than be bogged down filling out forms, balancing accounts and other related matters.
As I write, there are a number of folders piled up on the side table awaiting my attention. There are forms and assessment sheets that need filling. I need to collate my accounts (income and expenditure) for my accountant to send off to the Inland Revenue before the end of June otherwise I am liable to pay a fine of £150! Phew!
I will usually do anything else just to avoid it. Like writing this blog post now when I should really get started on all my filing, assessment sheets, blah, blah, blah!
I appreciate that keeping correct and regular paperwork makes life smoother but it is the doing of it that I have a problem with. It’s so hard! It is one of the few tasks I procrastinate on and keep off till as late as I possibly can. Sometimes I make an effort to do it as soon as possible so I can get it out of the way and not have to worry about it, unfortunately this isn’t one of those times.
While thinking of writing this post, I thought there might be a word for a phobia of paperwork. Someone gave a synonym for paperwork as ‘Satan’ but I couldn’t actually find the word I was searching for. Instead I happened on another, papyrophobia, meaning the pathological and irrational fear of paper.
It’s fascinating what you stumble across when you’re not actually looking. Who knew there was a concept like, much less a word for a fear of paper? Certainly not me! Apparently the symptoms of this phobia include feeling uncomfortable, becoming nauseated or beginning to perspire. More severe symptoms displayed by this phobia could be crippling anxiety and/or panic attacks, muscle tension, trembling, dry mouth, hyperventilating and gasping.
I admit that I don’t really understand how anyone can actually fear paper but I do not, by any means, wish to trivialise what may be a valid and palpable condition for some people. I do however feel sympathy for them as I love reading so much I couldn’t begin to imagine how traumatic it would be for me not to be able to touch paper seeing as books as made from the very same.
I wonder if having papyrophobia also makes one hate reading or if it is possible to enjoy reading but hate paper? That would make the person a bibliophile-papyrophobe – one who loves reading but hates paper. In that case, every bibliophile-papyrophobe must be doing cartwheels since the introduction of electronic readers. They now have a chance to get on with the business of reading and not have to touch any paper while doing it.
In my usual fashion and in keeping with tradition, when I can’t find a what a word that accurately expresses what I want to say, I make one up. It’s called poetic licence! Besides language is constantly growing and evolving with words being added to it regularly. So here’s my contribution to the growth and expansion of the Queen’s English, papyro-ergophobia!
Here’s my equation for newly coined word;
Papyrophobia = Fear of paper
Ergophobia = Fear of work
Therefore Papyrophobia + Ergophobia = Paphyro-ergophobia, fear of paperwork.
So this is my public confession. Hi, my name is The Wordsmythe and I’m a papyro-ergophobic.
I’m off to face my demons and tackle some of that paperwork right now. Wish me luck!
Tara for now.