We live for a really long time. I recently read that a woman died at the age of 114. She was born in 1900. That means she was 18 when WW1 ended. 38 when WW2 started. She saw the birth radio (Yes, radio!) and television.
Life expectancies are growing and it is likely that many of us will live well beyond 90 years. Consider that only 20 years ago; a mobile phone had to be carried in a suitcase, Google didn’t even exist and there were millions being killed or starving in developing countries. What will we see in another 20 years? 40 years? 60 years? 80 years? That’s a really long time!
But I think that how long your life is has much to do with your perception of time passing. How can we create this perception of a long life? How can we stop it all fading in our memories into a blur?
Do Special Things
Will you remember this day? Some days are so uneventful that you forget them in a week. Others stand out so much that you remember them for a lifetime. Doing special or unique activities will stand out in your memory. If you just went to work and came home to watch TV you will forget about this day of your life by next week. But if you came home and did something a little different like baking a cake with your family or going for a spontaneous drive to the sea you may remember this day for a long time (especially if you record it in your journal and take pictures/videos).
Change Your Routine
Don’t get stuck in routine. It makes your perception of time blend into one monotonous blur. It is good to have clear life phases. Change job, try new hobbies, create your own projects, emigrate to a foreign country. These will all help you to look back on your life as a challenging, rich and varied one.
Make Lifelong Friends
Memories shared with people can often disappear if those people are no longer in your life. A lifelong friend is a library of your history together. You reminisce over old memories and keep them alive. This is probably the most difficult to achieve as most people don’t succeed in having life long friends, most friendships are based on convenience or co-dependence and so fizzle out after a while (but that’s another article).
Take Photos and Videos
I like to take a lot of photos and Videos of things that I am doing. It becomes a kind of visual journal of your life. You can scroll back over your personal treasure chest in chronological order and relive the memories which are triggered by each one.
Write a Journal
A journal records not only events of your life but how you felt and what you thought about them. Combined with photos they help you keep your memories alive and thus you can look back at a past year or decade with a sense of accomplishment and time well spent.