Age Wise: How time flies! Does it go faster as I get older? by Owen Houghton | Health and fitness


“How did he get so late so early?” It’s the night before the afternoon. December is there before June. My God, how time has passed. How did he get so late so early? “

It seems that the older I get, the faster time flies. Where did this summer go? I can’t believe we are past Labor Day and schools have already started. Even with the release of COVID and the resurgence, I have no sense of boredom or lagging behind.

I guess I’m not the only one to mourn the loss of a summer that passed too quickly. The pastor even preached about it on Labor Day Sunday and sang John Prine’s song “Summer’s End” with the lines: “The end of summer is fast approaching… and is here faster than us. didn’t want it!

The search for some understanding of the issue of age begins with the thought that my activity level leaves little time for things to slow down. I’ve heard kids say, “What a long and exciting summer,” but I say, “Why has the summer been so short and gone so fast?” »Is there a difference in aging?

I admit being very busy, with relationships, travel, golf, maintaining church property, volunteering for rides, Rotary, and the pantry so my time is well spent, but – weeks go by with weekly routines surprisingly happening every several days. What is that ?

Science says our perception of time contrasts with the clock, subjectively accelerating with age. There are many theories for the phenomenon, some related to the differences between the brain and memory of life experiences between children and the elderly.

Real Time and Mental Time Are Very Different, According to Psychology Today Post ( Clock time is measurable, but mental time is very subjective. It is a question of relativity.

Apparently, Einstein proved that time is relative and that it actually slows down due to gravity and acceleration. Therefore, I guess my sense of time is relative, so my perception of time is different from how a clock measures it. It seems to accelerate with age, but I couldn’t find any consensus on the cause.

Professor Adrian Bejan hypothesizes that over time the speed at which we process visual information slows down, and this is what causes time to ‘speed up’ as we get older, why the days seem shorter as we get older.

Joseph Mazur, in his book “The image of the clock: our myth of measured time”, explains that time lives in us. Time consciousness in our cells combines with environmental cues such as social interactions – the perception of time is influenced by mixing. Maybe it’s really in our head!

The brain is always a mysterious web that changes as we mature and continue to age. However, there may be some truth to a theory that time flies faster with a defined routine. Granted, I eat the same breakfasts every day and expect regular meetings at set times.

The suggestion is that my current lifestyle, which I consider wise and healthy, creates an illusion of quick time. Do I now find new learning experiences to challenge my brain and help slow down time? Don’t think so. I’m pretty happy with my past adventures and now looking for a slower pace.

How elusive and intriguing time is: we save it, we kill it, we waste it, we have all the time in the world, but we can’t control it. It’s still precious and it’s going too fast! However, we can really make the most of the time we have on this Earth. Good management is age appropriate and gives healthy results.

“Time, poetically described as a relentless thief, scientifically explained as the fourth dimension, and virtually viewed as a precious and finite resource, is one of the universe’s greatest puzzles. The truth is, our decisions and actions define whether this is our enemy or our ally. Taking control of our time is about living our own life – not someone else’s – and making the most of it.

Owen R. Houghton, EdD, lives in Jaffrey and is an aging wellness educator who enjoys life in the Monadnock area as a volunteer. Readers can contact him at [email protected]

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