What affects our perception of time?

Whenever I sit and do work, I always marvel at how slow time appears to be moving. It’s kind of annoying when I just want to get something done and it feels like forever. This is even more apparent when I am working on something new.

The fact that I am unfamiliar with a subject makes the apparent time I spent working on it seem to be much greater than the actual time spent. I wonder why? Part of me wants to say it’s because of the fact that everything is new, so all aspects of the task are things that I am unfamiliar with and go slowly on – I also have nothing to compare it to so I don’t know if things are taking their usual length of time.

I’m all about comparisons – comparing one task to another to see which one is better or which one I perform faster. In this project, the author attempts to note the apparent disconnect between our perceived time and our actual time, specifically while performing unfamiliar tasks.

I’d like to posit that there is probably some psychological/metaphysical reason that our perception of time is affected by new tasks. However, as I am not a psychologist/metaphysical…ist, I can’t really give the reasons behind it. Anyone have a clue why we feel this way regarding time?

The Time Hack.


  1. Since the beginning of the semester I’ve been reading your blog for a school assignment. All of your posts are very relatable and insightful. I have enjoyed reading them especially this one about perception of time. This is so true! After reading it for the first time, the rest of that day I continued to think about what the affects were and I have yet to figure out why we feel this way.

  2. Hi Pauline,

    Thanks so much for your comment! I’m glad you enjoyed reading my blog – it feels great to know that someone is enjoying my writing, as much as I am enjoying writing it.
    Feel free to keep following my blog – now that I am finished with my Masters program, I’ll have much more time finding new and interesting things to talk about.

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