Why Does Time Seem to Speed Up as We Get Older?

Even Albert Einstein realized that the sense of time does not always coincide with the time actually passed. To explain the relativity, he said that sitting with a girl for two hours is like thinking it would be a minute. But if you sit for a minute on a hot stove, you think it would be two hours.But the sense of time does not just depend on what we do or how we feel right now. With age, many people feel that time is just racing past them. Years seem to pass in flight, weeks shrink to days, days to felt minutes. Scientists investigated this phenomenon and could not only confirm it, but justify it. Why the sense of time passes faster in old age and what you can do to slow things down a bit ...

Time is not always the same time
Time is a measurable and constant unit. A second is a second, a day is a day, a year is a year. This is not to shake up. However, as this time is felt individually, sometimes enormous differences can exist.

Imagine, a good friend would invite you to visit the opera. He is a big fan and absolutely passionate about opera and singing, you can do little or nothing with it and find the music terrible, but for his sake, say yes and go with him anyway. At the end of the performance, your friend will find it hard to believe it's over - for you, the hours will be like chewing gum under a shoe sole .

The personal sense of time depends on many factors: What are you doing? How do you feel about it? Who do you surround yourself with? Even if you are recovering and well rested, or exhausted and completely exhausted, your perception of time will be affected. You can observe this, for example, at work on yourself. If you are fit and in good shape, the eight hours are over quickly, but you have no eye during the night and feel miserable, the hands do not want to move at all.

Therefore, scientists who deal with it often distinguish between actual time and perceived time . Although the clocks tick for everyone equally fast, but it often feels very different. Especially with increasing age, this effect is noticed by many people.

The youth seemed to be endless, a year was an eternal period and looking back, the young years seemed to be much longer. In old age, the years only drag in the country, just celebrated its 50th birthday, is already the 60th planned. If the legitimate question arises, where is the time left?

Reasons for a faster sense of time in old age
In the meantime, it is no longer a guess, but a scientifically proven fact that the sense of time changes in old age. Researchers have addressed the issue in several studies and have come to the same conclusion that the time felt goes down faster with increasing age .

There are two different explanations of how the accelerated sense of time evolves in old age: the first is by Adrian Bejan, a professor at Duke University. He explains the shortened perception of time in old age by a change in stimulus processing . In childhood, adolescence and also in young adulthood, the brain captures and processes more impressions in a short time, it generates a greater number of mental images , as Bejan calls them.

Through this multiplicity of impressions, the temporal perception is extended. With age, however, fewer stimuli are processed, the brain slows down and a period seems to pass faster. There is thus an inversely proportional relationship between stimulus processing and perceived time.

Aged perception graphic
At the same time, Bejan says that the many new stimuli and first impressions collected at a younger age make the sense of time appear longer. A similar argument to explain the change in the sense of time provides also the German psychologist Marc Wittmann.

Above all, he sees memories as the cause of a faster sense of time in old age. New experiences and things that we experience for the first time are deeply remembered. Take the test yourself: remember your first big trip - either alone or with your partner. You can probably remember a lot more, even smaller details, although this holiday is much longer ago than other holiday destinations that you have traveled.

It works the same way for all the first times that are still very common in youth. The higher the age, the less really new is experienced, the memories are less memorable, larger periods of time are simply summarized and some things seem to be rather unimportant and are completely thrown out of memory. Looking back, the young years with all the memories are correspondingly much longer than the years in old age.

Changing the sense of time: How to stop the fast time in old age
Part of the guilt that time goes by faster is the routine . Everything has been there before, everyday life has a firm grip on the processes and there are no novelties or changes in sight. This is exactly where you can start to slow down the sense of time a little bit.

The easiest way : Break out of everyday life and the comfort zone . Create new memories that stay in your memories for the long term - continue to provide unknown impressions, new experiences, first times even in your old age.

You have almost endless options available. Rebuild the apartment completely, travel to a continent you've never met, take a course, and learn skills that are completely new and alien to you. Also new contacts and an extended circle of friends can slow down the sense of time. As long as it's new to you, it's a good idea.

In addition, it can help to keep your brain busy as you grow older, increasing your stimulus processing. Give your thinking apparatus something to do, challenge it, provide variety and activity with new impressions.

Timing: How to use your time better

The day has 24 hours, only the working time is considered, it goes on average eight hours a day. Everyone has basically the same amount of time at their disposal - you, the colleague, the boss, the manager ... But it is amazing how different amounts of time are accomplished and done. Some particularly productive and efficient people get the most out of each day, while others wonder how this is possible. Part of the answer: By a good timing . In fact, there are many ways you can use your time better to get more out of your daily hours. There are many things that you should do to schedule, if you want to use your time better, but also common mistakes that must be avoided ...

Timing: How to use your time better

Table of Contents: That's what you'll find in this article

Timing: A key to success
Avoid time-wasters for better timing
No time management without discipline
Tips for a better timing
What other readers have read

Timing: A key to success
Time always passes quickly. The only thing that can be different is the perception of a span , said Albert Einstein. If you sit together for two hours with the girl you love, you think it's only a minute; but if you sit on a hot stove for just a minute, you think it's two hours to clarify the idea of ​​relativity.

Thus, in professional life - apart from overtime and additional work - each employee is provided with the same time resource . However, how this time is divided and used is everyone's responsibility.

Meaning: despite the same time, there can be big differences in the results. Quantitative as well as qualitative . What one does is utopian for another. Motivation and discipline also play a role, but just in the timing can be a key to success.

If you divide your time in the best possible way, you get several advantages and positive effects . First of all, you improve your results and achievements. You can do more and work better, which will also attract attention to your boss. In addition, your satisfaction benefits because you can reduce stress and be proud of your work.

Avoid time-wasters for better timing
Timing learn to use synonym time betterThere's a lot you can do for better timing - more on that later in the article. However, before you get scared and fear that good time management is complicated and exhausting, there is good news first: Often you do not have to do anything extra, but it is enough to leave out bad habits in order to achieve better time management.

In the first step, you have to identify your personal time- wasters . Ask yourself what you spend the most time with during the day and especially with what you waste the bulk. Do you make many unnecessary phone calls that are barely effective, but cost time? Are you constantly answering mails or sitting in meetings so you can not focus on the real tasks?

At many time guzzlers you are also to blame, for example, if you are distracted by your smartphone or surf the Internet. To improve your timing, it takes this honest self-reflection to see where you can gain time.

No time management without discipline
It is easy to talk about timing, to put the project into practice is yet another challenge. The biggest problems are the lack of discipline . But this is exactly what you need to get the best and most out of your time.

Anyone who postpones, finds excuses or does not control himself and his actions, wastes time. Problems with your timing may therefore be a problem of discipline.

Try to discipline yourself , stick to it, and perform unpleasant tasks without postponing or breaking things down. Your time will already benefit.

Tips for a better timing
You want to improve your time schedule? Finally, there are a number of tips and suggestions that can help you:

Better scheduling through planning and preparation
What is up now? What do I have to take care of? Did not I forget something? It is easy to lose track and thus a lot of time that could make you more productive. Instead of thinking about it for a long time, you should pay more attention to planning and preparation. Indecision and disorientation make efficient time management impossible. Instead of starting blind, you should have a plan to orient yourself.

For example, the day before, think about what needs to be done the next day and which projects have to be done in which order. This can prevent unpleasant surprises, avoid stress and help you make better use of the limited time.

Better timing through clear priorities
Perhaps the most common and best-known tip for better timing: set clear priorities. Knowing which task is especially important and especially urgent will ensure that you automatically get the time right. This also means that you should focus on the important decisions so as not to waste time with unimportant trifles.

An eternal back and forth and thoughts about the pros and cons is only useful for big and important decisions. Be aware that not every detail needs to be planned down to the last detail and become perfect. Such exaggerated perfectionism makes good timing impossible and causes on top of that frustration.

Better timing by routine
Routines give your day structure and fixed processes. This order helps with a better timing, because the work is more organized. You can also schedule fixed times for certain things, for example, answer emails every morning from 10 am to 10:30 am. Or tackle the hardest task of the day every day first. So you do not jump from one ToDo to the next and do not waste your time thinking about what to do next.

Even a good morning routine can help with timing, to start the day right. In addition to sports, reading, radio or music, you can also make it your routine to go through the next day mentally and already be aware of possible time shortages that can be avoided.

Better timing by borders
An effective means for a good timing are limits. Determine how long you are engaged in a task and adhere to this requirement. This can already be done when planning a working day. Should it not work to keep the time frame, you can analyze the reasons for it and learn from it for the future.

You should not only set boundaries for yourself, but also for others. Do not be interrupted for trifles, ask colleagues to come back with a concern later, unless it is urgently needed. Also say no is an important factor in your time management, to avoid being overwhelmed with tasks.

Better timing by delegating
You want to do as much as possible yourself? Seems like a good attitude, but it can hurt your timing. They may not be good at everything and for some things you may need more time than other colleagues who have more experience or knowledge in this area. Understanding which tasks you should delegate and hand over to others is an important factor for better time management.

Delegating has nothing to do with laziness and does not harm your career or your reputation in the company - if you do not overdo it and simply reject any task. Rather, you prove that you know and use your strengths without forgetting the special skills of your colleagues. So all resources are used in the best possible way, which should also please the boss.

Better timing through flexibility
Despite all planning and structure, you should still remain flexible, because otherwise your time schedule soon reaches its limits. There is always something unpredictable that can upset your schedule. The boss comes with an order that can not wait, a customer has a short-term change request that needs to be implemented quickly, or a colleague needs help to keep a deadline .

Therefore, always leave some free time to react and adapt. In any case, with all productivity and timing, you should also think about breaks .

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