the illusion of time

the illusion of time

I went to see The Amazing Spiderman 2 last weekend and for some reason this one line that Dr. Parker said in the very first scene of the movie has stuck with me until now. Amidst some chaos and in the middle of video recording himself in his basement, he said this:

“I always thought we’d have more… time…”

And I can’t believe just how true that sentence is because isn’t this always the case? We do always think that we have more time, don’t we? But we couldn’t be more wrong.

Let’s just take the most simple example of studying for an exam, (yep, it’s that time of the year again, good luck to all my juniors who are currently drowning in lecture slides and finals stress!) why do so many students procrastinate? Usually it’s because they think they still have time, at least that’s what they’re telling themselves; and our brain is so good at convincing ourselves of our little lies. But before you know it, it’s the night before the exam and you still have 10 chapters to revise plus tutorial and assignment notes. Yeah, you’re not sleeping tonight. Who needs sleep anyway, right?

How about another example? What’s the number one reason as to why we’re late or always rushing? It’s “I thought I had enough time to…” You see, time is an illusion; one that lures us into a false sense of security by making us think that we still have plenty more of it. And we fall for it every time, when the truth is that the only time we have is now. Whatever we want to do or say or experience or create, it should be done now. When we say that we are just waiting for ‘the right time’, we’re only kidding ourselves. There will never be a perfect time to travel the world or get married or have kids or start a business or say “I love you” or anything else of major significance to you. There’s just now. It’s the illusion of time that leads us to procrastinate on life just as we used to do on studying for those dreaded finals. It’s the illusion of time that makes us think it’s ok to throw excuse after excuse at our dreams and goals. Except this time when we wake up in the morning, it’s not to find that today is the eve of an exam but it’s to find ourselves in front of a mirror with white hair and wrinkles on our faces; and we can’t spend a sleepless night cramming those “I should have…’s” and “I regret not…’s”

Life is short; and as cliché as that sounds, it’s 100% truth. Even if we live to be a hundred, it would still be too short, there still won’t be enough time to do all the things we want to; and this is without taking into account the very real possibilities that our precious life can be taken from us at any second, just like that *snaps fingers* (I’m thinking of spontaneous combustion of course, that sh*t is real folks!)

So if all we have is now, what would you do? What have you always wanted to tick off your bucket list that you kept putting off because you thought you’d still have time later? Whatever it is, I hope you do it as soon as possible; or better yet, now!

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the illusion of time

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