Time... it’s one of those concepts that get me started on it, and I could go on talking about it for hours. Note even that sentence. Hours... what’s the value in an hour?
The inspiration for this particular blog post is that I have pondered a lot recently over the ‘illusion’ of time. I know Einstein said it, and he was clearly pretty knowledgable, but I wanted to explore why is it that in life we either want something to come round quickly so we can ‘get it out of the way’ or we ask that time goes slowly for us so we can ‘enjoy things more’ like a holiday or time off. The subject has been particularly relevant for me recently - with an exam looming this week and feeling like time was getting away with me, I would wake up daily counting the hours I had left to cover off the subjects I needed to learn. But then on Thursday afternoon, when I woke up to realise I had fallen asleep on the carpet in my study, coloured pens and mindmaps surrounding me, I suddenly felt so overwhelmed with vitamin and mineral information that I simply wanted to fast forward to the next day where the exam paper would be in front of me so I could pour this overflow of knowledge that felt like it would burst my brain any moment now, onto paper. All I wanted was to prove I had learnt things! And prove it now! It actually gave me anxiety in that moment.
And this got me thinking. I stopped for a moment and stared out of the window at the snow falling outside. It was beautiful. Those snowflakes knew nothing of time. They were falling at their own pace, regardless of the rest of the world, regardless of what time it was. Nature and it’s force really does astound me at times. And I wondered what it would be like to know no concept of time at all. To not have that feeling of running out of it. What if we’d never been taught it? What if we just lived every moment as it was delivered to us by the universe. By the sun coming up in the morning and going down at night. What if every given moment was as valued and important and as special as the next, no matter what we were doing. We judge things based on time don’t we - ‘god I just wasted an hour of my life waiting in that queue at the bank’. How many times have you found yourself waking up and being overwhelmed by what you need to do that day. Get your breakfast and lunch made, get the car defrosted, drive to work in traffic, get to that dentist appointment, make sure the shopping is done. And all before 3pm when you need to pick the kids up. Of course we need structure in our lives and routine in order to operate. But by obsessing over time and what we have left in a day, a week, or in forever, what are we achieving? Time will pass and the moon will continue to move around the earth and the universe will carry on regardless. Time, we could argue doesn’t really exist in the present at all. What’s in the past was some time ago, but what you are doing right now cannot be measured in time; it is encapsulated in perception and thought and feeling. To worry about the future, which is something we all do to some degree, is a total illusion because it is something that doesn’t even exist yet. The now is what exists and the now is what we are living and the only thing tangible to us. We can think up scenarios of what may or may not happen until we are blue in the face, but we can never control our fate.
Don’t get me wrong this all sounds extremely fluffy and somewhat obvious, but if you stop and think about this concept it can actually help you enjoy the moment more, despite what stress you may be feeling. It can bring some relief and a feeling of calm I think. Revision was boring me to sleep (literally!) by the day before my exam. But when I woke up after that nap and saw that snow, I had such a strong sense in me that this moment was all I had. I could not change things or go back in time, nor could I elongate my day in order to try and pack in more of the subjects I still felt a bit ropey on. We are human and can only ever do our best in any given situation presented to us. So in that moment I also chose to say thank you, to myself for working hard and for staying true to my passion. Despite some other personal circumstances, I had worked hard the past few weeks and I deserved some self-love for that dedication. I said thank you to the universe for guiding me in all that I do and for the beautiful snow outside for making me stop for a moment to appreciate its beauty.
The funniest thing about this particular post is that when I suddenly realised I had ‘missed’ the February blog I instantly felt bad. I had always intended to post a monthly blog update, and by having missed out on February my ego was quick to tell me I had messed up. Then I took a step back and laughed out loud. This whole post was about time being a total load of old toff. This in itself was just another little message from the universe reminding me to simply live in the here and now.
Love and MeTonic