Why time goes faster as you age

It is said that time doesn’t exist, because it’s only a perception of human experience.

Think about it.

Why time goes faster as you age - imageDoes a tree know it’s getting older? Does a rock know how long it’s been around? Does the earth even care whether it has a future or not?  Since it has no concept of time, or even the awareness of its own reality?

These are interesting thoughts.  However since no rock, tree or planet is reading this, than the point is really moot.  In reality, we all live under the constraints of time.

So back to our main point – Why does time seem to go faster as we get older?

Well to answer this,  let’s get back to the human concept of time.


We basically perceive the passage of time by two things.

  1. The movement – rising and setting –  of the sun  of which we break down into the concept of time i.e.  days, years, seasons. decades etc.
  2. Our ability to observe the effects of the passing of time – changing physical appearances, aging of material objects, physical decay and finally death.


Why time goes faster as you age - imageWhy time goes faster as you age?

When it comes down to our perception, or awareness of the passing of time, it really boils down to a simple math problem.  To keep it simple lets break it down to the yearly aging process of people.

The reason time appears to move slowly when you are young is because you relate time in regards to your past experience with it.

For example when you are 12, and a year goes by, it seems so long because it’s only one twelfth of your entire life. So one year to a 5-year-old seems so long because its 20% of their entire life.

When you’re 70, a year seems short because it represents only one seventieth of your existence. So one year to a fifty year old is short because it makes up only 2% of their entire life.

When we are younger, we have so few years of experience that any passage of time is only a small fraction of our life as a whole.

As we get older, time really goes faster because we have so much more experience with  the passage of time, as each day, month or year goes by.


In the end, it’s up to each and every one of us to decide how we use the limited amount of time we have left on this planet. Like we say at OneMeanDream: Dream it, Live it, Mean it……



  1. I think there are other reasons as well, such as 1) enjoyment and 2) purpose. 1) Pretty clear that if I’m spending an hour studying math (yuck) or reading a good book (yay!) the experience of time is going to be different. 2) You’ll remember that we always said our semesters at MJU seemed to fly by. Part of that, I think, is because we enjoyed our work, and I hope you still are! But another reason, I think, is that we had a job to do and limited time to do it in. In which case, having one mean dream should make your life go faster!

  2. Yeah time flies when your having fun. Having OneMeanDream definitely helps me have a great time in life, even if life isn’t always so…. fun. Of course for some of us its the simple things that bring joy, even if its 45 degrees and you live in a giant desert!

  3. Boghos L. Artinian MD · Edit

    The Denman Effect

    Christopher Denman drops in
    Punctually once a year,
    Yet surprised I always am
    Him earlier to behold.
    This anomaly in time
    I will name, ‘ The Denman Effect ‘,
    For Denman shows me that time
    Flows faster as one grows old!

    Boghos L. Artinian

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