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experiencing time while getting older

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posted on Jun, 28 2011 @ 07:35 AM
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I realize that at this moment there are a couple of threads about 'the concept of time' on ATS already.
It's not my intention to create a similar, same topic thread... the question I have is a very specific one and does not fit in any of the other threads without derailing them.
Therefor I did make a new thread in the hopes that my specific question, one I'm been pondering on for months now, receives an acceptable answer.

My question is simple:

"As we get older, why does time seem to move faster?"

I remember when I was a kid and a teenager, there always was enough time in a day to do tons of stuff, and after doing these tons of stuff there was even time left to sit around being bored.
The things I was looking forward to never seem to come closer and the hours I spend in a classroom seemed endless....

Now, as an adult in her 30ties, there is never enough time in a day to get things done, the days and weeks seem to fly by, not to mention the years.... and the birthdays!!! lol
Summer is here again already, summer vacation for the kids... it seems like the previous summer just ended. For our kids however, the schoolyear seemed to last 'forever'.

Today I woke up at 7am, wanted to get a couple of things done by noon... it's 14.20 now and I'm half way. I swear that if given the same amount of time, I could have had everything done just a couple of years ago. It's not like I became slower, or atleast I don't think I did.

So what makes time fly by when you get older?
Is it that we think slower and therefor create the illusion that time goes faster?
If time itself doesn't change, then it must be something within ourselves that changes....

the Net doesn't provide me with a good answer, so....

who has the explanation?




posted on Jun, 28 2011 @ 07:40 AM
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reply to post by GypsK
 


Thats a really good question, I wish I knew the answer too.
Sometimes I will sit down to drink a coffee and by the time it's finished over an hour will have zipped past me when it seems to me its been about 20 minutes at the most


Also Christmas seems to happen about once a month now as far as I can tell.

I'm 33 just in case thats important
edit on 28-6-2011 by davespanners because: spells



posted on Jun, 28 2011 @ 07:43 AM
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Part of it is that a day or year is a bigger percentage of your life when you are 4 years old than when you are 40 years old.

Time and the perception of it has always fascinated me, from a young age.



Originally posted by GypsK
Is it that we think slower and therefor create the illusion that time goes faster?


That's a pretty interesting idea.



posted on Jun, 28 2011 @ 07:48 AM
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I think part of it has to do with responsibilities. As a child, what do you HAVE to do? I can remember only telling time by the ringing of the dinner bell and darkness.
As we grow up, we have responsibilities, appointments, ect...
It sucks!
I have noticed this, and I wonder if it is even worse when your a parent?



posted on Jun, 28 2011 @ 07:52 AM
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reply to post by davespanners
 


oh I know what you mean!
you can't enjoy a cup of coffee in one normal lunchbreak anymore, lol



posted on Jun, 28 2011 @ 07:54 AM
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Originally posted by kosmicjack
Part of it is that a day or year is a bigger percentage of your life when you are 4 years old than when you are 40 years old.


That is true I guess,
but you would expect a 4 year old to have so many new impression and experiences during a day, much more then an adult... so from this point of view the adults day is more 'boring' and slower then the 4 year olds day.... and yet it goes by faster, that doesn't add up....



posted on Jun, 28 2011 @ 07:58 AM
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Originally posted by chiefsmom
I think part of it has to do with responsibilities. As a child, what do you HAVE to do? I can remember only telling time by the ringing of the dinner bell and darkness.
As we grow up, we have responsibilities, appointments, ect...
It sucks!
I have noticed this, and I wonder if it is even worse when your a parent?


You mean it's because we live 'by the clock'?
hm, maybe we do keep a to tight of a schedule.... then again, even my lazy sundays fly by in no time


I was a young mom and I only started to notice this time phenomena once I hit 30 and by then my child was 9 years old already so for me personal it has nothing to do with the responsibility of having kids



posted on Jun, 28 2011 @ 08:00 AM
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I think it might have to do with memory.
When you are younger, your sum knowledge and experience is proportionally much less than when you are older. As you age and gain more to fill you're memory, conscious and subconscious, the faster your brain works to process and add new ones as they occur. At least that's my thought but who knows. Perception is a tricky thing.



posted on Jun, 28 2011 @ 08:00 AM
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I agree with kosmicjack. When you're 5, a year is 1/5 of your life. At 50, it's 1/50th. But it does seem to be just FLYING by! From New Years to Summer Solstice seems to be just a month or so... It's crazy!

I also think kids live more "in the now". Every experience is an adventure. They put everything into life and live it to the fullest. When we get older, we're always worried about the future and frustrated about the past. Our minds are rarely fully present. I think time whips by when our minds aren't present.



posted on Jun, 28 2011 @ 08:01 AM
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You know the routine, you know what to expect and it happens. You are not really learning or exploring life any more. You walk, kids run everywhere. You go to work then go home, kids want to go outside and play. You watch the news, kids watch cartoons.



posted on Jun, 28 2011 @ 08:04 AM
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reply to post by GypsK
 


When my husband and I have a particularly busy, hectic or stressful week, we often make a comment like "It seems like a month ago that we (fill in the blank)..." when in actuality it was just a few days before.

I know if I stumble upon something particularly interesting on the web, an hour can go by in a snap while I'm drawn into reading and reflecting.

So maybe the processing of information or brain activity does have something to do with it. As adults we are responsible for so much more than a child so I would think our brains process information on multiple levels. Kids, home, work, social life, finances, etc.



posted on Jun, 28 2011 @ 08:09 AM
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Originally posted by dethduck
I think it might have to do with memory.
When you are younger, your sum knowledge and experience is proportionally much less than when you are older. As you age and gain more to fill you're memory, conscious and subconscious, the faster your brain works to process and add new ones as they occur. At least that's my thought but who knows. Perception is a tricky thing.


It could have to do with memory...

but, if your brain starts to work faster, the perception of time should become slower.
Think of a sudden adrenaline rush in an emergency situation: some people report to see things happen in slow motion exactly because their brain goes into overdrive due to the adrenaline.

hm... maybe it's because our natural adrenaline levels become lesser?



posted on Jun, 28 2011 @ 08:28 AM
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reply to post by GypsK
 


Yeah, I suppose that makes mite sense. More data to process, brain works slower.



posted on Jun, 28 2011 @ 08:33 AM
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reply to post by GypsK
 


Being quite old, I would say that the apperance of time does speed up as the looming dead end (pun intended) becomes more apparent.

Throw in the invariable things we didn't accomplish, want yet to accomplish and add the nagging mistakes along the way to where we are, and you about have it. Time is but a precept, changable according to the situation.



posted on Jun, 28 2011 @ 08:44 AM
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hey op, i haven't read the other replies as im in a hurry but I figured this one out (or my take on it anyway) 15 years ago or so, anyway i wrote it down as I was convinced it was correct and always forget these things that we think of in those times... anyway here it is:

at 2 years old a year seems for ever because it's 50% of your life , at 20 it seems less because it's a 20th of your life, at 40 it seems less beca..... you get the idea. I guess it's all relative right!

that's my take on it anyway


just scrolled up and kosmicjack has the same idea as me... great minds think alike right!
edit on 28-6-2011 by doubledutch because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 28 2011 @ 08:52 AM
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reply to post by GypsK
 


I've heard this analogy, see what you think about it.

Think of an hourglass. When you first turn it, it is full. It seems to be moving slowly. As it gets towards the end, it seems to be moving much faster, and finally, you can watch the sand fall through at what seems like light speed.

Really, it's moving at the exact same speed, until the last grain of sand. We notice it more at the end, because we become aware it is running out, and we start paying more attention to it. So time is something we become aware of, which, as child, we don't give it much thought.
edit on 6/28/2011 by ladyinwaiting because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 28 2011 @ 08:57 AM
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I think i know this one.

The reason time seems to pass quicker as you get older is the memory system. When you are young every day you encounter new emotions, sights, sounds, experiences. The brain is in overdrive recording everything demanding your attention therefore 'slowing' time down. As you get older you have experienced so much that your brain starts to overlap memories without recording over them so in retrospect as you remember the past year it seems to have flown by because you have little detailed memory. Time passes at the same speed in the present its when you look back at it you realize it has flown by.

This theory can be experienced in car travel. Notice when you travel to another city for the first time it seems to take forever but as you frequent the city the trip seems to fly right by and becomes a small commute. Your brain pays less attention, records less because it doesnt need too, its been here already so in retrospect you feel that time flew by quicker.


Look at the seconds tick by on the clock. Its not going faster. Its all perception based on the efficiency of the mind.
edit on 28-6-2011 by Shadow Herder because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 28 2011 @ 09:00 AM
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reply to post by kosmicjack
 

Exactly. As we age the value of a day as a percentage of your whole life lessens and lessens and we realize just how little time an actual day is. Christmas used to take years to arrive and now it feels like it happens once a quarter. Probably because I have to pay for it now instead of just getting gifts.





Originally posted by GypsK
Today I woke up at 7am, wanted to get a couple of things done by noon... it's 14.20 now and I'm half way.


That's ATS' fault, nothing to do with time speeding up.

edit on 28-6-2011 by dbates because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 28 2011 @ 09:17 AM
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reply to post by GypsK
 


This is another example of why your brain hates you. As a youngster things in life tend to be good, so you get excited a lot, your brain punishes you by making you wait seemingly endlessly and then when the thing you enjoy happens it flies by in no time.

When you get older you start to realise that everything is a load of crap and your brain will make you fly through the alright parts and then when something bad happens like ill health or the death of somebody you know it makes those moments drag on forever. (you here all the time about people in nasty accidents who felt like the experience went on for hours when it was really seconds)

If your brain liked you it would whizz by the bad stuff and slow down the good stuff but it doesn't. Wouldn't it be nice if a work day felt like a second but that first refreshing sip of a beer in the pub lasted hours.

Your brain however isn't bad, it is in fact helping you. By letting bad stuff seemingly go on forever when you get to dying you will look back on life thinking "that was mostly crap" and be happy in death.



posted on Jun, 28 2011 @ 09:58 AM
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reply to post by Shadow Herder
 


That's a great explanation. I can relate to the car ride, only it doesn't even take making the same trip again, just driving home seems quicker than the drive there.



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