People often talk about how difficult it is to manage time. Time, in itself, is not a real thing – while we measure it in units that we have created – hours, minutes, months etc. – it is really how we interpret time that is important. Is time going fast or slow for us? How do we measure time as we become older?
Western time marks time as linear – we have a past, present and future – but there are other societies who see time as something more cyclical, that we can return to past events and that life and death are a continuing cycle. For instance in Madagascar people there think of the future as actually being behind them and the past is in front of them because one is not yet known and the other is observable – so the past can be looked at and learnt from rather than forgotten or disregarded as not useful as it has gone behind us.
So if we allow ourselves to treat time differently and to realise that we can soften our perception of it so we can enjoy the moment rather than measuring it then possibly our experience of our own time can be different.
(Taken from ‘Psychologies’ 12.2016)