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  • Writer's pictureAubrey Harris

This is Why it Feels Like You’re Losing Time

Updated: Jan 31, 2023

Whether you believe time is of the essence or merely a social construct, we are, in fact, lost without it.

Despite its intangible nature, our orientation to time and place helps us gauge progress, regression, and motivation in our lives.

In March 2020, time halted at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Ever since, there have been continuous false starts for a return to pre-pandemic life- all of which have been feeding an urge to experience all that we’ve missed.

In efforts to make up for lost time, we’ve created an indefinite state of urgency and stagnancy (Trying to do everything but feeling like you’re doing nothing).

Here are some ways to reclaim your sense of time as the world remains off-balance:

Practice mindfulness: Deep breathing and body scan meditations reconnect you to the present and natural cycling of your internal clock. Journaling, keeping a calendar/planner, and scrapbooking also anchor time by documenting important dates, events, and experiences.

Avoid doom-scrolling: The ‘endless scroll’ and ‘pull-refresh’ format of social media apps is designed to stimulate the reward center of the brain. The result? Chunks of time lost, mental overstimulation and a feeling of groggy, disorientation upon realizing you haven’t moved in two hours. The cherry on top is that you still have to face your problems.

Go outside: The natural rhythms of nature remind us that time has structure. A sunrise/sunset walk or even sitting in a park admiring the seasons can reorient time and space.

Engage in long-form content: While our brain enjoys the newness of fast-paced stimulation, it also distorts our ability to pick up on nuance and time orientation. Feature films, blogs/articles and board games are all examples of media that require long-term engagement for gratifying outcomes.

Remember that time passed cannot be regained. Trying to play catch up or rushing into the future only robs us of the present. Slow down and take everything in before it also becomes the past.

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