Lindsey dragged herself out of bed for the third time that night. The baby was teething and kept waking up. After an hour of carrying around the baby while sleepily singing, Lindsey fell asleep in the armchair, with the baby on her stomach. Early in the morning Lindsay’s husband carefully put a blanket over the two of them.
The day was endless. It contained all the normal elements of a rushed breakfast where she ended up cleaning up after the children, asking them to hurry up and getting everyone into the car before realizing she had not eaten anything herself.
At work the tempo was as high as usual, meetings taking longer than planned, leaving no time for her normal tasks. She kept checking her watch, feeling as if the work day should have been over by now, but the hands of the watch moved as slowly as her tired mind.
When she went out of the office and got into her car, she looked at the flyer on the windshield. “Spring market” it read in a playful bright yellow font.
Spring market? Already? How could the days be so long and the weeks so short?
In Man’s search for meaning, Viktor E. Frankl describes how we can suffer from deformed time.
“In camp, a small time unit, a day, for example, filled with hourly tortures and fatigue, appeared endless. A larger time unit, perhaps a week, seemed to pass very quickly. My comrades agreed when I said that in camp a day lasted longer than a week.”
Time is special. We can and do measure it, in a clear and linear manner. But we can experience it in all kinds of ways.
The deformed time Viktor Frankl described, is especially common when we don’t see a clear goal or meaning with our lives. Then we go into auto pilot mode and the days become boring and long – at the same time as the weeks fly by since we experience so few new things.
If your days seem grey and boring, lift your eyes, remember why you are here, who you love and what you are working for.
With this in mind, you will make the most of each day instead of “robbing the present of its reality” as Viktor put it.