The average lifespan for someone in the United States is about 79 years old. That’s 28,835 days; 692,040 hours; 41.52 million minutes; 2.49 billion seconds.
While this may seem like a lot, you would be surprised to see how much of this time is used up on certain day-to-day activities. For starters, can you believe that people spend about 92 entire days sitting on the toilet? Weird.
According to Distractify.com, here is how long the average person spends…
1. Sleeping: 25 years.
2. Working: 10.3 years.
3. Watching TV: 9.1 years.
4. Cleaning: 1.1 years.
5. Cooking: 2.5 years.
6. Eating: 3.66 years.
7. Driving a car: 4.3 years.
8. In the bathroom: 1.5 years.
9. On Digital Media: 70 percent of his/her waking life.
10. Deciding what to wear: 1 year (for women).
Given these statistics, it really makes you ponder the concept of time. How much do we even have left for significant activities and memories? You start to realize that even all the little things add up and time is a very precious thing.
But how many years of our lives do we actually spend just waiting for time to pass?
When you’re working a long shift at your minimum-wage job, you can’t help but constantly glance at the clock while anxiously waiting for the very second that you get to clock out. Because once you clock out, you’ve earned your freedom for that day.
When you’re sitting in your two-hour lecture hall and listening to your professor’s monotone voice explaining material that you couldn’t care less about, all you can wish is for the class to be over. Because once you walk out those doors, your torture ends.
When you force yourself to go to the gym and workout, you push yourself to endure multiple sets of small time intervals. Ten minutes on the treadmill or even just 60 seconds doing a plank feels like an eternity—an eternity that you desperately want to be over. Because once you get through your workout, you get to shower off and reap the benefits of your healthy decisions.
When you’re dealing with a tragic incident—a hard breakup, a death in the family, a lost job—you know that things will only get better with time. You want to skip through the pain you’re feeling and jump to the future of better circumstances. Because you need to keep your focus away from the hurt that is happening now.
When you have a stressful week at work or you have a huge final coming up that you’re dreading studying for, you have to convince yourself to push through the next few days. Because once you suck it up and deal with it now, it will all be over later and you will get to relax.
When you’re extremely bored at home for the summer, you can’t wait to go back to school to be surrounded by all your friends. And then when you’re facing finals week and pulling gruesome all-nighters, you can’t wait for a relaxing vacation of sleeping in till noon. Because you can’t seem to get the best of both worlds all the time.
My point is that a big chunk of our lives is probably spent waiting for time to pass. Looking forward to the promise of approaching circumstances is not always a bad thing—it can help us cope with and provide positivity in a tough or less-than-exciting situation. However, it’s also important to acknowledge that we have developed a mindset of “getting by” and just making it through the present while waiting for the future.
It seems that we are constantly wishing for time to pass; we are constantly wishing our current moments away and focusing instead on brighter ones ahead. But no matter how insignificant these moments may seem at the time, they end up equalling a significant portion of your life. The hours and hours spent in situations where the clock just can’t seem to go fast enough probably add up to years—years that you spent just wanting them to end.
So if you’re ever in the circumstance where you are met with impatience towards time, try to dwell on the occasion at hand and be purposeful in it. These are seconds of your life that you will never get back. After all, you’ve only got 2.49 billion seconds to spare in a lifetime, and you’re already wasting a lot of them just sitting on the toilet.