The Illusion of Time: How Our Perception Varies.

Alejandro Betancourt
Photo by Federico Beccari on Unsplash

I just decided to send my children back to school. It was a challenging and moving choice for me. On the one hand, I had to fight back the tears on the first day of school while being the one in control. On the other hand, after so much togetherness, I was getting back some seclusion. When children are present, it's hard to have some privacy.

I've got so much on my plate lately that I'm running out of time all the time! I'm sure everyone else feels the same way. The day used to seem like it would never end. Now it's vanished in an instant. Every scientific advancement appears to offer some benefit in terms of saving time. So, why do we end up with less time in our own hands?

As I'm writing this, I realize that there is the actual time as a measurement system. And then there's my perception of that time. Depending on how I'm feeling and what's going on in my life, that perception might differ significantly. Time seems to fly when I'm having a good time. When I'm not cheerful or engaged, the reverse occurs. Time appears to be moving more slowly.

There are so many things to do in life but not enough time for them all. How much of what we do every day has real meaning? We tend to fill our days with small tasks and chores. And when we realize it, another day has gone by.

Time management is an excellent focus for many people. Time seems to be the only thing we have, yet it runs away from us as if mocking all of our efforts. I used to think that time was absolute, but now I understand that there are no such things as "time." Time is more like a measurement system created by humans.

One of my sons inquired to me the other day why the night took so long. He wanted sleep time to be shorter so that he could play more. I, too, wish that.

Time is a sort of an illusion.

We think we have time, but it never seems to be enough, right? Is it possible that we feel we have time when, in fact, we don't? Time isn't absolute, so the amount there truly depends on your viewpoint. It also changes depending on what's going on in your life! But more importantly, I am beginning to understand that my perception of time varies from one moment to another. When I'm having fun or enjoying myself, time flies by so quickly! And when I feel overwhelmed with work or tasks at hand — hours seem like days.

So, what exactly is time? And why did we decide to measure it in the first place? Time was designed as a theoretical concept for us to manage our affairs. Time is simply the length of time that passes between two events. Have you noticed that not even today's date is a fixed point in time? Today may be defined as October 19th, 2021, using a Gregorian calendar, but according to the Hebrew calendar, today is 13 Heshvan of 5782.

Time is what we make of it, like many other things. We are the ones who decide what it is, how it works, and whether or not we profit from how we deal with it.

I feel a sense of freedom when I recognize that I make what I want and not the other way! Time becomes what I want it to be. Time can be both fast and slow, depending on how we look at things.

When we live in the present time, enjoying every moment for its own sake without thinking about tomorrow or yesterday — then time disappears from your perception entirely because there isn't anything else except this exact moment which may as well last forever.

This all sounds wonderful, but you may be thinking. Yeah, but I need to get on time to pick up my children at school. I can't make of it what I want. Time management is an essential thing to learn. Time becomes the material we work with, and how fast or slow you want it to go depends on what goals you set for yourself — such as getting your children from school, picking up groceries before they close, etc.

Taking control of our time means becoming aware of all those tricks that waste our time without noticing: checking social media every five minutes; watching TV instead of meditating; thinking about something else while driving (which could result in an accident).

There are so many ways to waste our precious time, yet most people don't even recognize these things happening because the mind gets used to specific patterns after some time. The key is awareness! When I become more conscious about my actions, I experience a sense of control, which gives me a sense of freedom. I'm sure you do too!
Photo by Noor Younis on Unsplash

The present

Life is about being in the present. There is no life in the past, and there is no life in the future. Both past and future are like ghosts to me. They seem real, but they don't exist. Time exists, and we experience it through changes in nature, day and night, etc. Time does not change; however, our perception of time will vary depending on how fast or slow the events are happening, which is subjective to each individual's perspective about what happens within their mind.

I am talking about awareness again because everything starts with being aware! When you become conscious of your actions, you can redirect that action into something more useful.

The past was lived by someone who has departed, and the future hasn't happened yet, so why be concerned? The present moment is where life truly happens.

It is mind-blowing to recognize that the time that my whole life will last is nothing compared to the time it has taken for our planet to exist or our solar system. And yet, for, me it's everything! Our time here is our most precious thing. Time is relative and can be expanded or contracted based on our actions. Time management isn't about controlling the time that passes by but instead how we use it wisely to accomplish important things.

Time perception has an incredible impact not only on our lives as individuals but also in society. Suppose you feel like your day lasts forever. In that case, this feeling will affect everything around you, including relationships with other people who might perceive their days differently than yours (this might lead to conflicts). The same applies if your day seems too short — there won't be enough time to complete what needs doing leading up to deadlines until those deadlines pass without anything being accomplished due to lack of time available at the end! Time illusion affects us all whether or not we realize it.

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Los Angeles, CA

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