Saturday December 15, 2018

Revealed: Why time slows down as we age

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By NewsGram Staff Writer

Passage of time is a strange phenomenon. Sometimes, it flies-by and other times it drags interminably. For some, time can race and yet for others it can be a stagnant pond. However it might tick off, it is undeniable that time puzzles all.

There is a huge gulf of difference between time (real) as measured by clocks and our own sense of quantification. Eventually, we are the makers of our sense of time.

Deducing Time

By using predictable recurring events occurring naturally, such as day and night and repetition of seasons, humans have created reliable instruments to measure time. To mark their passage, we use clocks and calendars.

Apart from external formulations, we also seem to possess an internal timepiece, one that regulates our circadian (day/night) rhythms and allows us to register the duration of particular events.

The representations stored in our memory use the pacemaker to compare the length of each new event, thereby building up a knowledge bank of what each second, minute or an hour feels like. The development is central to our brain’s ability of registering short durations and transforming them into an understanding of the flow of time across the lifespan.

Still, however, our internal pacemaker does not always keep time as accurately as our external instruments.

Our personal perceptions of time are determined by the physical state, mood and the extent of our focus. For example. when we are concentrating, time appears to pass by slowly, Ditto when we are bored. On the other hand, when our attention is divided (particularly during multi-tasking), time flows by swiftly.

Another factor which influences the perception of time is the emotional quality of an event. Negative emotions such as sadness, depression have the ability to slow down time, as is the case with fear. Joy, fun and frolic have the counter-effect of speeding-up time.

Similarly, age has a lot to do with how we perceive time. Aged people, specifically those above the age of 60 often experience variability of time. Even as days stretch longer, festivities such as Christmas appear nearer and faster.

Causes behind differing time perception

As we age, a number of cognitive processes such as dividing attention between different tasks and concentrating on a particular job change, thereby giving rise to anomalies in time perception.

Also, the frame of reference for the duration of events changes with time. In this respect, there is a thought that the perception of time is in proportion to the length of our lifespan, a theory known as the “proportional theory”.

The theory posits that as we age time begins to feel relatively short as compared to our lifespan. For instance, a 70-year-old man may feel time passing quickly in relation to a teenager who is  15-years-old.

Yet, the theory does not fully explain how we visualize movement of time from second-to-second and day-to-day.

According to scientists, the clarity of our memories is believed to mould our experience of time. The past and other historic events are used for achieving a sense of self-existence across time.

“Reminiscence bump”, the decade between ages 15 and 25 associated with an increase in self-defining memories is the period when most of our vivid experiences occur. As older people move further away from this critical period in their lives, the memory cluster also speeds-up with age.

Clinical disorders such as autism and attention-deficit-hyperactivity are also frequently associated with problems in estimating time intervals. Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s also lead to difficulty in time travel to the past.

The answer to solving the problem of differing time perception perhaps lies in strengthening cognitive abilities particularly memory and attention. Meditation and mindfulness can help us in being in the here and now, slowing down the fast moving pace of time.

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Copyright 2015 NewsGram

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10 Tips to Spend Quality Time with Your Family

“The best thing you can give to your family is YOUR TIME”.

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Family walk with dog. Pixabay

To earn bread for our family and give a better living to our children, we often forget that the best thing we can offer them is our time. We try to buy all the luxuries for our loved ones and even purchasing the best health insurance plan to make them feel secure. We do this all to ensure that our family has the assured financial security, especially when we are not around. However, what if we are with them? Are we able to spend quality time with our family members? Probably not, and this is the story of most Indian working couples.

By explaining all this, we do not mean that you should stop earning or leave your job to spend time with your family. Instead, we want to say that take some time out of your busy schedule and spend few hours every day with your loved ones.

If you are unable to find out a way to spend some-time with your family and loved ones, we are here to solve your problem. Today, we are discussing top 10 ways to spend more time with your loved ones:

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Your family members will be covered financially, in the case of your absence. Pixabay

 

  • Have at least one meal together: Be it breakfast or dinner, try to have at least one meal of the day with your entire family. Generally, due to our busy routine in the mornings and different timings of schools and offices, becomes difficult to have breakfast together. However, having dinner together is not tough; so make sure to have your dinner with your family.
  • Drop your child/children to school or extra classes: If possible, drop your children at their school on your own. This will give you all a travel time together, and you can discuss various school-related issues they may have without any other interventions. If it is not possible to drop them to school, try to drop or pick them up from their extra classes. In this way, you can convert your travel time into ‘together time’ even on weekdays, without bothering anyone.
  • Go for weekly family outings: Whether it is a latest movie or zoo, take some time out of your busy schedule for a family outing. Moreover, take the opinion of your children and spouse to plan something for the weekend.
  • After dinner walks: This tip is especially for married couples who live with joint family or have kids. Generally, such couples miss ‘together time’; therefore, for them, it is suggested to have an after-dinner walk. In this walk, you can discuss your day or anything that you want to share with your partner.
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A family that eats together, stays together and healthy! Pixabay
  • Share your experiences and family stories with your kids at their bedtime: Try to spend some quality moments with your family at bedtime. Read some storybooks of your child’s interest or tell some family stories or your experiences to your children while they are in their bed.
  • Celebrate family traditions: India is a country of culture and traditions, and if you start celebrating these traditions, there is no need for any other family get-togethers. It is a good method to spend quality time with your family as well as make your children understand your family traditions.
  • Turn your mobile off when you are at home with your family: One more problem that every family faces these days is interference of smartphones. Even though all the family members come home on time, they all keep themselves busy on their mobile phones. Have you ever noticed that despite sitting together for long hours in the same room, we all do not talk to each other and remain busy on our phones? Leave this habit; rather switch your phone off when at home to spend more time with your family than on social media.
  • Keep in touch with your extended family members and relatives: Despite the fact that we all have a long list of tasks for our weekends, we should meet our relatives. We all must try to visit our extended family members or call them to our place at least once in a month. This is because family ties are precious and will our children adjust with people rather living alone in a nuclear family.
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Be it breakfast or dinner, try to have at least one meal of the day with your entire family. Wikimedia Commons
  • Spare some time to do nothing: This is to assure your family members that they are your priority. By doing this, you make sure to your family that you do not have any other plan than spending some time together to do nothing. Simply talk to each other about past week or plans or discuss some good experiences or bad moments. This will give you an insight of which your family member is suffering these days. Moreover, if you have teenagers at home, you can connect with them as well.

Also Read: Family Size Can Be Determined By Reproductive Rights: Study

  • Cook the favorite recipe for your family together: Cooking together can be a lot of fun for both young and old people in the family. Get advice from the eldest member of your family for the better recipe, whereas involve the youngest in other easiest task of cooking. In this way, everyone will be involved in this family cooking event, and all will love the outcome. Do not forget to click pictures of these moments of togetherness and make videos of sweet activities of your small kids.

 

By following all the above-mentioned recommendations or even a few of them will improve your bond with your family. Moreover, it will give you several chances to spend some time with your loved ones.