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This category is aimed towards international visitors of zinvollerleven.nl. Zinvoller leven is Dutch and can be translated as both a ‘more meaningful life’ or ‘living more meaningfully’. Either way: living with purpose is what is is all about.

You won’t find any translations of the Dutch content here, but you will find articles written in English that will hopefully be interesting for both the Dutch and the international visitors. : )

Time seems to speed up as we age. But why?

Why time seems to speed up as we age

Do you remember when you were small? How uncles and aunties would pinch your cheek and say how much you’d grown and how time went by so fast? I always found it really stupid. In my experience time really didn’t go that fast. And what with the cheek pinching thing? Now that I am an auntie myself I do refrain from the pinching thing, but I do recognize the feeling of time moving very fast. And very slow at times. So were my aunties and uncles right after all?

* also watch: Mister Sunshine’s video * 

Time is an individual experience

The thing is that time seems very absolute. You watch the clock and you can see the seconds ticking away. I can hear it as I am typing this. But to us, mere humans, time isn’t that absolute in our mind. Literally. Because our mind needs to put different pieces of visual, auditory and other sensory information that we experience through different channels. Our eyes, ears and so on. We can do this very fast, but our mind, and thus our experienced world, always lag behind half a second or so. So what is happening right now, or seems to be happening here, in this moment, in actual fact, happened a little less than a second ago. Weird thought, huh?

* also watch: How childhood trauma affects health across a lifetime * 

New experiences make time slow down in our minds

So time isn’t that absolute after all, that is to say our personal experience of time is far from absolute. With each new experience our mind needs to work a little harder to put the pieces together. So this happens when you do something new. As children we experience new stuff all the time. So as kids we -unlike those aunties and uncles- don’t experience time as something that is going very fast at all. As we get older and have a lot of life experience, most of us gain less and less experiences and thus the familiarity of life, leads us to experience it as time speeding up.

* also watch: Lessons from the longest study on happiness * 

Time standing still?

Another example of the relativity of time is when something shocking or dangerous happens. Time seems to stand still, or go in slow motion. We almost experience whatever is going on as it moves by one slow frame at a time. A clear example for me is when I was at a rock concert in a mosh-pit in my early twenties.

It felt like minutes, but it must have been seconds…

The place was littered with broken beer glasses and around me (mostly) big guys were stomping up and down on big army boots. A dangerous place to be on the floor. Clearly. I remember not wanting to put my hands on the floor because of the glass/boot situation and how I looked up and saw bodies jumping, slamming and so on. I put my arms up and it felt like minutes were passing. It must have been only seconds in reality, that one of those guys grabbed my hands and pulled me up. But 25 years or so later, I still remember vividly how time slowed down significantly in my mind.

* also watch: The doodle diaries animation, about becoming a widower * 

However long or short it feels, in the end life is short

Time seems to speed up as we age zinvollerleven.nl

So is time absolute? In our western societies, we act as if it is. We have a very lineair perception of time moving by. It would be easy to have a complete philosophical discussion here. I won’t bother you with that. Not today. What I will say is. The only real time is here and now. Not the past. Not the future. No matter how relevant that is or seems. You can never regain time once you’ve lost it. Life is as a small island in a huge ocean of nothingness. The time that you don’t exist at all is much longer than your existence will ever be. So live here. Live now.

Spend your precious life on stuff that really matters…

Don’t waste your energy on stuff that doesn’t matter. Like your ego, status of keeping up with the Joneses, the Kardashians or whomever or whatever you deem important. Spend your precious little lifetime on people and things you really care about, that fulfill you and make you happy. You won’t be given a second shot at this thing called life. Memento mori.

* also watch: The Life of Death – beautiful animation

This blog was inspired by yours truly and by this YouTube video by the bbc, have a look at it as it explains time slowing down and speeding up very clearly. Live and learn. And do stuff that matters!

Welcome international visitors thank you for your support!

welcome and support zinvollerleven.nl

Yes here’s an international section of zinvollerleven, aimed towards the international visitors of this website. As you will have noticed, most of the website is in Dutch and that will still be main part of the website. But over time we have noticed more and more international visitors on the website, so we aim to make your visit a little more interesting for you too! And while you’re here, I as the founder would like to ask for your support as well as your interest in zinvollerleven.nl. Further down you can read how and why it won’t cost you a thing!

Zinvoller leven? Ehhrr… what?!

Zinvoller leven is Dutch and is translated either as ‘a more meaningul life’ of ‘living more meaningfully’ and thus is a website with purpose and about life, meaning and purpose. The site was built in May of 2018 and by now has a steady flow of visitors. Mainly from the Netherlands and Belgium, but from overseas too. The English content is yet to be written, but in the meantime I would like to refer you to the ‘video in English’ tag. The content with the videos is in Dutch, but the carefully curated videos are in English or without any verbal language. Do have a look at them. They are informative, inspiring and at times very touching. (Yes, I would say this. I did choose them, right?)

Work in progress

welcome and support international visitors zinvollerleven.nl

As with all websites zinvollerleven.nl is a work in progress. The structure of the Dutch part of the website is quite clear, but the English category will grow organically and that will surely be related to all the articles on the rest of the site, but won’t consist of direct translations. That would be too boring for me as the founder and writer of this site and I also want the English content to be interesting for the Dutch visitors too. Most Dutch speak, read and write English reasonably well.


Embarking on a journey together

So you the reader and I are going on a journey together as I am figuring things out. In Dutch I have written a fair bit, both on this and other websites, but also in trade magazines about coaching and HR and in books on similar topics. And in Dutch I have found my own distinct writing voice. Hopefully I will gain my own distinct style in English too! We shall find out soon enough! Feel free to comment on the articles written. I am happy with feedback if the English is isn’t quite right, but if you understand it regardless you are also very welcome to turn a blind eye. After all: there is no such thing as perfection.

Who’s the founder of zinvollerleven.nl?

First of all zinvollerleven.nl is a privately founded platform for everyone interested in all things meaning and purpose in life. It is founded by yours truly a forty-something woman with a master’s degree in the social sciences and living in one of the big cities in the Dutch Randstad area. I am happily sharing my life with my partner of over 10 years. I have always been interested in meaning, purpose, philosophy, psychology and the likes. Maybe to understand myself and others better, or maybe simply because of my ever curious nature. I have chosen to remain anonymous for the time being, but that may change in the future. Both you as the reader and I shall find out. As said, founding and maintaining an online platform is an organic process…

Do you like zinvollerleven.nl? Please support us!

If you like zinvollerleven.nl and want to support the website help me by using the affiliate link to amazon.com. It won’t cost you a cent (or a penny etc), but it will hopefully earn me a little money to at least cover the costs… Or even make this a fulltime job! I would be super stoked if that were to happen, eventually.

zinvollerleven.nl tulpje

Ordering on Amazon.com will earn me a small commission

If you order on amazon.com by clicking the link in this sentence or below in the amazon logo, I will earn a small commission which for now will cover some of the costs for maintaining this website. It won’t cost you anything extra and I will not receive any information on who you are, where you live etc. But as said: it will earn me a small amount of money. That way I can provide you with more free content (or eventually start an English website?) and you will get to read more interesting articles! That is a classic win-win situation in my book! Thank you very much for your support and interest in this website! amazon logo

And a few more links for the people using these Dutch webshops

If you click on the logos, you will be redirected to the mentioned webshops. For these I will receive a small commission. Alvast hartelijk dank!



Thank you! Dank je wel! Danke wol! Gracias! Merci! Danke schön! Obrigada!