The Accelerated Crawl Of Time

Time is a pretty strange concept when you start to think about it.  It’s one of the few things in life that no one really has control over, yet something that everyone possesses at one point or another.  We hold onto it, we waste it, we give it to others, and we can never get it back.

Time

With twenty-four hours in a day and twelve months in a year, time is a fixed idea.  Sixty seconds tick by and before you know it, a minute is gone then another and then another.  The sun rises and sets each day at variable times, but the pattern persists for most individuals.  Wake up, exhaust the daylight hours, go to sleep, repeat.  Sure, the activities of each day will inevitably vary, but we intrinsically are living just as the ancient cavemen did.  Granted, we have technological advances that can keep us up well into the night.  I’m looking at you, Internet!

The older I get the faster it all goes.  Seems like just yesterday I was eagerly waiting in the hospital to become an auntie for the first time.  My niece turned four last month and her younger brother and two cousins have added to the “Auntie’s kiddos” tally.  I blink and suddenly a new month requires me to turn the calendar page and another year flashes by at warp speed.  Spring has barely arrived and before you know it, Christmas will be here and 2013 will be over.

And it seems that just as quickly as time passes, we are always wishing it could go a little faster.  We count down the hours and days until the exchange of vows, the healthy diagnosis, the exciting journey, the reunion with loved ones.  Hell, sometimes we’re just willing the weekend to get here.

Time Drags On

As Tom Petty once sang, “The waiting is the hardest part,” and he was correct.  No matter how old we get, anticipation of something—whether good or bad—is the only way to get the clocks to cool their proverbial heels and slow down.  Our views of time vary depending on each circumstance.  An hour at the office can feel like a decade while a two-week getaway at an exotic location can seem to be over as soon as it started.  Why is it that the things we don’t want to do appear to suck up all of our time while the things we like to do pass by so quickly?

It’s all just a matter of perception.

I am constantly aware of each minute during my hour-long spin class, staring at the hands on the clock as I push myself through sprints and hill climbs, ignoring my burning muscles and drenched skin.  It’s grueling and always feels like I’ve been sweating at the gym for much longer than 1/24 of the day.  Yet, an hour spent with my nephew and tubs of Play-Doh flies by without so much of a look at the clock as we squish the colorful, salty compound between our fingers and get lost in make-believe.  The amount of time is the same, but one’s enjoyment of the activity will determine how quickly or slowly the time passes.

It’s not just about whether we like how our time is spent or not.  Each person goes about his or her days and nights in a different way.  Some people, more content to live in the moment rather than by a schedule, can easily float through their days without ever knowing the hour of the day.  While others, bound by the constraints of every minute, find that planning their days, months, and years to be more conducive to their own contentment.  And there are some people who find a happy medium in the two extremes, comfortably existing with deadlines and unplanned hours.

Whether you feel like you’re racing through your life or waiting for it to begin, I hope you all fill your days with pleasant moments that you can recall long after they’ve passed.  There is no right or wrong way to spend your time.

Wasting Time

And don’t ever let anyone convince you otherwise.

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19 thoughts on “The Accelerated Crawl Of Time

    • Jessica says:

      Thank you, Rian. There’s so much to explore with this subject and I know I didn’t say all that there is to say. Perhaps I could turn all of the tangents into a series…

  1. Cécile says:

    Nicely put, Jessica. I also noticed the older I get, the faster time passes. A bit scary when you think about it.
    Love the John Lennon quote: wasting time is one of my favourite activities, and often a time when good ideas spark 🙂

  2. filbio says:

    Terrific post, and does make one think how much we revolve our lives around time. We are either always in a rush, or trying to make more time. As we age time seems to move faster and we wish we could slow it down. The sands of time slow for no one.

    • Jessica says:

      Like money, time is something people obsess about. There’s never enough or there’s too much or we don’t know how to spend it. It’s a constant state of worry and as it goes by, we seem to want to hold onto it a little tighter, fearful of the day when it runs out. Thanks for your thoughts, Phil.

  3. whitt88 says:

    Posts like these are good investments :). You lend a new perspective to one of life’s essential facts, forcing us to question and examine our attitudes. The return on the investment, for me anyway, is a variation to how you end your first paragraph, that we can never get time back. We may not get the past back, but reflecting and concentrating on how to best use our precious time expands our long-term futures. A fine, thought-provoking post, Jessica, with a handsome multiplier effect.

    • Jessica says:

      Thank you so much, Whitt! I’m glad it made you ponder how you’re spending your own time. I hope that however you spend your days, laughter and happiness are a big part of them. 🙂

    • Jessica says:

      Thanks for stopping by, Coleen! When I wrote it, the concept of time was very much on my mind and that Lennon quote just fit so well with what I was trying to convey. 🙂

  4. susielindau says:

    I’m hoping to waste less time in 2014. My daughter writes out a schedule and she cranks out so much! I had been adhering to a very loose one, but I’m going to give it a try!
    Great food for thought! Thanks for bringing it to the party! I hope you have clicking over to other blogs!

    • Jessica says:

      Thanks for stopping by, Susie! Time is such a fickle thing, isn’t it? I’m like your daughter; I do very well with schedules. Unfortunately, it makes spontaneity very difficult for me. Here’s hoping you waste less and I waste more time. 🙂

  5. Kitt Crescendo says:

    Stopped in from Susie’s party…. Time has always been fascinating to me for all the reasons you listed.
    As I read, it brought to mind a quote (one of my faves) from Henry Van Dyke. “Time is too slow for those who wait, too swift for those who fear, too long for those who grieve, too short for those who rejoice, but for those who love, time is eternity.”

  6. amadiex says:

    Susie sent me….I really enjoyed your post and I can most defiantly relate to how time can be for you or against you. Most of the time it seems like I cannot get enough jammed in my day and I find that I leave out the things I really want to do, but time runs out for me to do them. So this year, I am making time to do the things I enjoy, because I don’t want to look back in regret.

    • Jessica says:

      Gotta love that Susie! I hope your attempt at making time for what you enjoy works for you. It would be a shame to miss out on what you love to do. Thanks for reading!

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