I started thinking about the concept of time when I came across this quote by Soren Kierkegaard:
Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards.
We live in the present (obviously) but we have so much tied into the past and the future. Here’s a smattering of a small list of factors that affect your life, lifestyle and behaviours:
Financials: In debt? Out of debt? Comfortably middle-class? Filthy rich?
Family Life: Single parent? Two parents? Two same-sex parents? Grandparents? Guardians? Orphan? Foster child?
Location: Which country? City? Culture? Religion? Belief system? Race?
Education: Which school? Located in what country? City? Area of the city? Rich or Poor? Private or Public? Religious or not? Dropout? Secondary school? College? Masters? Doctorate?
Our past affects what we do in the present, and even an hour ago is considered ‘the past’ in your Present time frame.
We want it to speed up when we’re young or in the middle of debt repayment, but to slow down when we’re getting into our golden years.
Let’s focus on money:
In your past, how you were taught (or not taught) about money affects how you first dealt with it in the future, but doesn’t necessarily determine how you will be for the rest of your life.
PAST: Whatever you learned about money you could:
- Stay on the same path as your parents (good or bad)
- Become worse off financially
- Become better off financially
PRESENT: Whatever you you know about money now, you can:
- Stay on the same path
- Change for better or for worse
FUTURE: Whatever you know based on Past and Present has to be accounted for in the Future:
- Save for emergencies
- Save for short-term savings (rent)
- Save for funds such as traveling
- Save for your future children
- Save for your future home
- Save for your retirement
What we do in the Present, is affected by the good or bad decisions we’ve made in the Past and will affect how our Future turns out.
We cannot look to the Future without taking into account the Past and taking action in the Present.
It’s the reason why we have such a problem with Time and thinking about it in a singular sense, because Time isn’t just today, at this hour, this time and this very second.
Time is fluid and both the Past and Future play into our Present decisions today.