I don’t know about you, but for me, it feels as if time is flying by at exponential rate. The days, weeks and months of 2019 have been an utter blur, and I feel as if there are not enough hours in a day to complete all the tasks that I set out for myself. Then, if the fleeting passing of time isn’t enough to deal with, the guilt and regret of not completing your to-dos begin to set in.
Geez, can we catch a break?
As a woman and working mother of two, I know that I am not alone in my grievance with Father Time. Our roles often require us to focus our attention and energy on things outside of ourselves: career, children, partners, parents, etc. However, even with this understanding and awareness we still expect ourselves to fit in self-care; fitness and beauty regimens; creative projects and side hustles.
So, what’s up with this phenomenon of time? Why is it that time seems to move slower when we’re young and faster as we age? According to Santosh Kesari, MD, PhD, and neurologist, in an article with NBC News “ “We gauge time by memorable events and fewer new things occur as we age to remember, making it seem like childhood lasted longer.”
As we age, we have a tendency to fall into cycles of monotony that thwart our motivation to operate outside of our comfort zones to try new things or make new memories. With age, comes experience; therefore, decreasing our encounters as many “firsts” as we did growing up.
But hope is not lost. Though we cannot slow the passing of time, there are things we can do to make the time we spend more memorable.
- Try NEW things – We may think we try new things often, but if we actually reflected on it, we’d realize they aren’t as NEW as we thought. Join a group in your community and meet new people. Buy a vegetable you’ve never heard of and try to prepare it. You never know what you might encounter.
- Be spontaneous – As someone who schedules things, this can often be a challenge. I often feel that spontaneity will lead to an unpleasant experience because of lack of preparation. Well, THAT expectation hasn’t worked, so this is something that I am actively working on. Get outdoors and explore on a whim. Take a drive to a new location. Book a vacation or staycation…without any expectations.
- Challenge yourself, regularly – This is closely related to trying new things, but with a little more effort. Learn to play an instrument. Say NO more often. Set out to read X number of books in a year. These are all things that require us to push ourselves. But, if you can imagine the feeling of accomplishment, it is oh, so sweet.
In the words of my greatest mentor, Oprah Winfrey, “The greatest gift we can give ourselves is time.” And for the remainder of the year, I intend to do just that. We made it through the first half of 2019, so let’s make this second half a time of fulfillment. We’ve depleted ourselves enough.