Features Opinions

Do you suffer from OCD (Obsessive Cryptocurrency Disorder)?

July 1, 2017


Do you suffer from OCD (Obsessive Cryptocurrency Disorder)?

As Bitcoin prices steamed up over the last months, and the afresh discussions and talks make the crypto-currency landscape a little bit shaky, it’s time to give special attention to those who suffer from OCD (Obsessive Cryptocurrency Disorder). Sounds scary and pathological, right? However, relax, until this point, it has not been officially classified as a mental disorder in itself as it just started to make its way into the crypto public consciousness. Forasmuch as the hype and the attention that blockchain and cryptocurrencies have received lately, added on top of the tremendous monetary implications (currently $23.5bn according to CoinMarketCap) it is quite easy to see how this can easily develop into an obsession.

To understand better the situation that crypto enthusiasts have to face on a daily basis, you have to imagine tender values such as dollars taking the place of bitcoin or other altcoins. In the real economical world, central banks and other financial regulators, try to maintain the fiat currencies inside certain value boundaries, through controlled inflation, deflation, or other financial regulations. Imagine there would be no entity to regulate that, and the value of a dollar can rise or drop with whatever, and the price fluctuates with more than 3 digits overnight and the value of a dollar is close to one gram of gold. It’s kind of hard to resist the struggle to not look at price charts and crypto exchanges every hour. It’s even harder to live with this struggle.

It all starts, in the beginning, with a few Bitcoins in your wallet, this is all it takes for one to start a crypto obsession. At first its symptoms and manifestations are mild, would almost go unnoticed. The subject opens a tab once in a while to check, out of curiosity, what happened to Bitcoin or other cryptos during the last time. Even though cryptocurrency scene/ environment had lost from the high volatility that defined it in the early days, some currencies are still steered by trade swings and a 100% rise can be nothing more than a fata morgana.

The symptoms start to become more and more prominent, going from having a separate tab with real-time charts to dedicating an entirely different monitor to cryptocurrency price charts. Those affected by OCD don’t limit themselves to just a few tabs, they want to be connected to the crypto market throughout the entire day. As a consequence, their phone is packed with mobile exchanges and trading apps. The manifestations become more acute with time and number of owned altcoins, and while at the incipient stage of the “disorder” they would go unnoticed, it starts to affect both the productivity and the mental habitat.

In the age of digitization, constantly checking your phone is not something unusual anymore, yet OCD seems to be more than that, as it consumes people from inside out, isolating them into a world governed by trend charts and prices. In some cases it costs them more than money, but sleep, productivity and sometimes even their social life.

There is little research going on whether it should be classified as an actual disease. However, just like many other things people get excited about and end up developing manias or fixations, this type of obsessive attitude has for sure no healthy implications, and it is important to keep it under control, especially in the case of people who are prone to “addictions” in general.