Understanding time has always been a mystery. Nobody has been able to decode the language of time or how it can be perceived or governed to a limit.
“People, they change with time.”
This is a very commonly stated statement. But have you ever wondered what is the rate of the changes we undergo in our lives with respect to our age? Definitely, changes slow down as we become older. Changes are more prominent in children as compared to adults. We all live with a sort of illusion that we now, at present, have finally become what we are meant to be. Irrespective of the age or the point of time in life we are standing at. We tend to underestimate how much our values and personalities will change in the years ahead. Even preferences, for that matter.
We make an assumption that if our preference has not changed in the previous years, it cannot possibly change in the coming years. But when we are older, we often find ourselves speaking about how our lives have changed over the years.
Why do we overestimate the stability of our current preferences?
We all have favourites. We have favourite singers, movies, books etc. But these favourites keep changing. The book you were willing to pay a 50 dollars earlier, now you wouldn’t even want to buy it any longer. Simply because, you have a new favourite book or maybe your favourite genre is no longer romance. You are more interested in a thrilling read now. Likewise, the concert you wanted to go to, when you were in high school, paying a whopping 200 dollars, you find it a total waste now. All this happens because our preferences are unstable.
We can remember what we did ten years ago but we find it difficult to imagine what might happen to us in the future. This is because, remembering is easier than imagining.
The difficulty to imagine the future does not tell us that the future event is unlikely to take place just because we cannot imagine it happening. It just denotes the lack of imagination.
Time can alter anything. Could be preferences, values or personalities. Only with hindsight, we realise the amount of change that has occurred to us. We are all constantly developing, evolving and progressing. We are being unfolded slowly and gradually. We are unfinished as of now and subject to change. We are right now, as ephemeral, as fugitive and as impermanent as all the roles or characters we have ever played. The only thing constant is change.
We are all made of memories. Memories that influence our choices. Choices that define who we are.