We all want to slow down time. The days slowly pass while the years fly by. There’s a reason why we perceive time the way we do. Read on to find out how you can slow time’s fleeting moments.
Here in the sunny State of Colorado, the back-to-school blitz is on. The Target store aisles are filled with list-wielding shoppers snapping up school supplies. The days are getting shorter and summer is almost over. For many, the season has flown by. Soon the snowflakes will be flying too.
Why does time seem to accelerate as we get older?
When we were young, so much of what we experienced was new. Our little brains worked overtime to process fresh information. No wonder we slept so well!
As we age, less surprises us. We go through the motions of daily life. Our brain doesn’t have to work very hard since it has already processed our surroundings. As we drag our feet through mundane activities during the week, our memories of similar days blend together and time speeds up.
Routine = Blended memories = Time acceleration.
Ordinary events like coming home from work, making a frozen pizza and watching a baseball game on TV blend together. But if you raced home from work and drove to a baseball game with friends or family, you would remember that occasion. As you begin to add various activities to your schedule, time slows down.
Here’s a memorable family moment.
Diverse activities = Distinctive memories = Time deceleration.
The weird thing is time flies when you are having fun! Over a short period time, it seems to accelerate when we aren’t aware of the passing minutes or hours. The opposite is true if we are on a cold examining table while watching the clock and waiting for the doctor to arrive, especially if we are naked under a paper sheet.
“Hey! I’m enjoying my own dog days.”
I recently ran into a middle-aged man warming up in a ski lodge. “If you want to slow down time, just have a baby,” he said. After remarrying, he started a second family. He had forgotten how boredom makes time seem endless. That’s what happens when we stare at the clock.
So here’s the trick. If you want to slow down the perception of time, make some plans! Shake things up. Break out of your routine every day and surround yourself with different environments. Don’t look at the clock and the day will race by, but when you look back at the weeks or months at all those distinctive memories, it will seem as if time slowed.
Last year, we traveled to Europe in the beginning of summer. We also took a trip to Wisconsin and California. That was the longest summer ever!
Me? Oh no. I don’t want to slow down time. I live in the land of 300 sunny days. This summer has been endless. I plan to sit here and type until the snow flies. I can’t wait for ski season!
It won’t be long!
Is time accelerating as you get older?
A post you might like – 10 Things You Can Do Before it’s too Late!
My days are a mix, some hectic, some where I can get lots and lots of editing done, and the latter is so important. I’ll divert our winter snow your way!
Bring on the snow!
It’s weird how some days I just get on a roll and others I plod through. For me it has to do with energy level and what my goals are for the day. With the book I am rewriting, I had to let it percolate for a while. I didn’t realize that was normal and I felt bad that I wasn’t plowing through it. Now I know that if I had, it would have been only half the story I am writing now. I am learning that the writing process is different for everyone!
Could time be speeding up because there are more things we want to do in less time, all due to the fact we now actually have responsibilities? Just a thought. Not all aspects of growing up are “hideous!” If anyone wants to slow down time I’ll let them borrow my kids. Once they get into it (every few minutes) time slows down to a snails pace. LOL.
I remember those days. I was a den mother and would watch the clock. If a parent was 2 minutes late, I was already freaking out! Hahaha!
From what I read, the perception of time in the span of weeks or months is really about the memories that stand out. When my kids were at home, even though we ran from event to event, they all blurred. Now because life has settled down for me, getting out of the house and doing something special becomes a more distinctive memory.
Send them over! 🙂
Thanks, Susie, for a thought-provoking post. It is really odd how we perceive time, sometimes moving so slowly and other times going by so fast. I’m struggling right now, as my writing career is picking up speed, with finding a sense of balance in my life again. I used to be retired. What happened to that? It does seem that the seasons go by so much faster than they did when I was younger. Wasn’t it just May? Life is indeed a wild ride.
Hahaha! Wild it is!
Congrats on yours! Every one of us writers would LOVE to have your problem. Balance is key. We all need a break from the computer once in a while.
Thanks so much for stopping by to read!
I love your tip on shaking up the routine. Even little things, like trying a new workout class or re-decorating my table (aka office ;)) seem to liven my spirits.
Love the photos! Thanks for the inspiring post.
Thanks August! There is a lot of new research out there and I am going to try to make some new memories as well!
We’re currently stationed in the land of “liquid sunshine” 9 months of rain 3 months of construction (meaning enough sunshine to actually fix the roads finally). I’m hanging on to that hour hand to keep it from moving, as tight as I can grip it until the cold, wet rain finally defeats me back into the house. But you make an excellent point about making those memories – so true!
Where are you? Seattle? Send some rain to Colorado!
I have willed time to slow down by staring at a clock too. After doing the research, I am definitely going to make more plans!
Thanks so much for reading!
I feel as if I am on one of those moving sidewalks at time going through a time warp – ha! Great Post and that is why you just have to live in the moment and enjoy it:)
What a great way to put it. The pizza/baseball analogy really stuck with me. I try to remember to savor each day, but sometimes I just get too caught up in what needs to be done and I forget to do what I want to do. I don’t think I realized Colorado gets that much sun. Makes sense, though. Enjoy the rest of your summer! Fall is just around the corner, then it’s snow, snow, snow for you!
I can’t wait!
There is a lot written about the subject. I find it so interesting that as we enter the last “trimester” of the year, we all panic! Maybe accomplishing goals has something to do with it too…. hmmm….I am definitely going to make an effort to create more memories! That can never be a bad thing no matter how time is perceived! 🙂
Great article! I actually think about this a lot…it was a big consideration when I decided to become a teacher. I love that feeling of youthful excitement when the night just carried on forever with games of tag and riding bikes. It’s strange being an adult when everything flies by so fast, yet there is a loss of sensation for the events unfolding.
Cheers to you!
I think you hit it on the head. As we have more similar experiences they don’t stand out. We also aren’t as likely to try something new. Skydiving anyone????
I love how I was having a crappy couple of days and you bust out with some awesome Tony Robbins like advice. Thanks for posting that second formula. Thank God I was good at Algebra. Good post 🙂
I am so glad! I hope it helps! I’m taking my own advice and am going to avoid looking at the clock the next doctor visit. 🙂
Pretty good equation coming from an art major eh??? Hahaha!
Yeah you art majors are ruling the blogging world …
Hahaha! Watch out math and English majors… 🙂
Thanks for the timely reminder, Susie! This week has just chewed me up and spat me out. I’ll have to come back to this one…. 🙂
I am so glad! I learned so much in doing the research. Now I am going to keep trying to pack in the events and avoid watching the clock!
I can relate to your post quite a bit! I wouldn’t say that time accelerates with getting older for me but it does accelerate the less quality time I allow myself. For example, when I place myself in front of the TV, after a busy day, and zapp through a programme that I am not even very interested in, the day will be over in what feels like seconds. When I sit down on the porch, having a nice conversation with my partner, instead watching TV, or when I am doing something creative, time might flies by while I’m having fun, but it still feels more like hours than seconds that flew by, because it feels fulfulling.
I believe it comes down to how present I am in the moment. The more present I am in the now, the more time I have. It is always now. It helps being aware of that. 😉
I am wishing you sun in your heart and a wonderful rainy day on the outside to bless and nourish you and the ones you love!
Thanks so much for the blessing Stefanie! I needed that!
I agree about your philosophy about time. I think that is part of why my summer was on the longer side. It is because I feel like I got a lot done. Whew! I gotta keep at it.
Thanks again and the best of blessings to you and yours!
🙂 – Thanks much for the blessings, Susie!
I still stick to my theory that they simply aren’t making time the way they used to. Inferior workmanship, that’s what it is! 🙂
Where is that warranty? It was just here a “minute” ago…. Hahaha! Thanks for stopping by!
Great post, Susie! My ride continues to accelerate with ever-changing backdrops … from being a child to having children and then grandchildren … it’s all a wonderful memory-filled adventure . When I stop to acknowledge I’m in the home stretch to seventy (but still think I’m no more than forty!), somehow I hope it doesn’t slow down. Of course I also think it’s going to go on forever … hmmm, might have to adjust that at some point but in the meantime … ONWARD!
I LOVE it Patricia! You you look younger than me! I think age is irrelevant and who knows. We could all live into our 100’s! With your positive attitude, I bet you will!
I stopped wearing a watch a few years ago, since I was checking it constantly. It made me think back to one of the reasons the days seemed so long when I was younger- because I had no blessed idea what time it was, and I didn’t much care.
Isn’t that the truth!? I only wear one when I go out and then only look at it when I am the last one at the party! Hahaha!
Time has blurred into a fast moving blob for me now that the “babies” are no longer in full time education – I feel as though I have lost those speed bumps and markers that tagged a year. Lovely post and thank you for the company!
This summer was the first time my kids both lived in their own apartments. When they stopped by the house, it became more of a memory and an event. That’s what made it slow down for me! It is a huge transition after all the years, but I am settling into it. Besides, I am easily distracted and can’t write when others are around!
I’d never thought about it this way before, but I think you’re right. It makes sense to me that when life is new and fresh it seems to move slower. I also find time moves slower when I’m anticipating something. Time always seems to drag right before my birthday for example. (Yup, I’m one of those people who still loves birthdays. What’s not to love?)
I am with you Marcy! When I am looking forward to something, time slows to a snail’s pace. Birthday’s rock!
Thanks for stopping by to read Marcy!
Hiking an uncrowded mountain trail slows down time for me…and once back to the parking lot, you wonder why life has to speed back up so quickly.
I thought I was the one to discover this principle. If you drive to work the same way every day the time passes so quickly and you find you can do it without consciously thinking. If you shake things up and drive a new way, you find you’re paying attention for the entire drive. The same principle applies to other parts of our lives when we make alterations and try new things.
Exactly! Now I am adding new events (does cleaning out my garage count?) to make the weeks seem longer, but am avoiding the clock when I am bored…
Sorry I’m late! I was busy trying to hold onto the last moments of summer.
Today, TechSupport had to bring in all his gear to school and load up his locker. And now he has a 5 hour training to be a WEB Leader. (WEB stands for “Where Everyone Belongs.”) He will be helping out the incoming 6th graders. He is really excited to do this. One day he will be a great camp counselor.
Whoops. I just slipped back into summer again.
So we have a few more days.
Our grocery store has the Halloween candy out already.
I hate that. Too much rush-rush hurry-up.
This summer flew for us. Flew.
Thanks for stopping by and my congrats to Tech on his new job!