General Question

PandorasBlocks's avatar

Where does the time go?

Asked by PandorasBlocks (112points) May 28th, 2008

Why does time seem to slip by more quickly as the years stack up? Do you think it’s a perspective that changes with age or the number of obligations we promise ourselves to or… ? (yes dad, I sound old now, thanks)

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

13 Answers

bmhit1991's avatar

all I can say is “that’s a tough one!” great question!

richmarshall's avatar

For me it accelerated when I had kids. Just yesterday my son was laying on my chest… he is 13. When did the time pass??

marinelife's avatar

Like summer seems endless when you are kid just getting out of school, life seems the same way to the young. The older you are, the more you realize how many things can go wrong, and it could all end in an instant. It does usually make life seem more precious.

ebenezer's avatar

I think it is building up in my joints and on my teeth.

whatthefluther's avatar

Mathematically, a unit of time does not change, but its significance decreases as we age. One year to a ten year old is significant…its one tenth or 10% of his life whereas to a 50 year old its only 2% of his life and thus is not as significant. Philosophically, its value would be the opposite as the 50 year old statistically has fewer years left in his life, so each subsequent year should become more precious than its predecessor.

Allie's avatar

whatthefluther: You stole the thought right out of my head. =]

susanc's avatar

Well, when you get quite a bit older, you stop being quite as busy, or quite as hassled,
and it goes slower again. You find you have a whole day when all you really want to do is
whatever your cat is doing that day, and you can. It’s completely interesting, and you
have time for it. Something else begins.

Harp's avatar

Here’s a study that takes a look at variations in time perception among various groups (elderly, Parkinson’s patients, amnesiacs, etc.). It finds that perceptual shifts related to aging have to do with three factors: impairment of attention, impairment of “working memory”, and…uh…well, I forgot what the third was (no, just kidding) and slowing of information processing. So, while the internal clock my remain steady over a life span, the brain’s ability to pay attention to both the internal clock and other tasks diminishes with age. The slowing of processing time makes real-time events appear to happen more quickly because the brain has a harder time assimilating that information.

marinelife's avatar

@Harp What? What did you say? I didn’t get that. :)

Harp's avatar

Pay attention Marina, forchrissakes!

susanc's avatar

There was an article in the NYTimes the other day about how older brains appear “slow” because they’re so full of memory that their search function takes longer to sort.
As we get older, we store more information, contain multiple narratives, gain layered experience creating perspective. They used to call this “wisdom”. It can be pretty reliable.
Those extra seconds of thought may not be disability after all, but the workings of a vastly capable inner reference librarian in an unimaginably vast library.
Trust me on this.

scamp's avatar

We like to call it over the hill and picking up speed!!

tellelefler's avatar

It goes wherever you put it!

Answer this question




to answer.

This question is in the General Section. Responses must be helpful and on-topic.

Your answer will be saved while you login or join.

Have a question? Ask Fluther!

What do you know more about?
Knowledge Networking @ Fluther