The average life expectancy of human beings worldwide is 71 years according to the United Nations World Population Prospects. That is equivalent to 621,960 hours. If that average person sleeps for approximately 8 hours a day, that’s a third of his life, or almost 24 years gone. That leaves him with 411,720 hours.
Education from grade school up to their A levels plus college years is around 17 years. Now, let’s just take the hours inside school, so we’ll deduct weekends aswell as the holidays. That means we spend around 27,200 hours in school. And don’t forget the homeworks, school projects and extra curricular acitivies. I think it’s safe to say the average amount we spend is around 35,700 hours.
Working until retirement? Say 45 years of his life, that’s 86,400 hours. Eating three meals a day (30 minutes per meal) takes 35,784 hours. Flushing the food and liquid consumed down the toilet is about 7,952 hours. That leaves us with 245,884 hours which is roughly 28 years or 342 months. What about the hours we drive or commute? The time we spend getting ready each day? Doing our groceries? Shopping? Watching television? Playing games? Going on social medias? Dating? Socializing?
How we divide our time varies from person to person. And I’m not saying we should lessen our sleeping time, or deprive ourselves from the little enjoyments in life. No, absolutely not. These are necessities to living a healthy lifestyle (bearing in mind that you do not spend too much time on one particular thing). But just think, how much of our time do we really spend with the people who matter in our lives? How much time do we give back to those who took part of their time to take care of us? To teach us patiently during our childhood days. To clean after us when we were so incapable of even feeding ourselves.
From personal experience during my teenage years, I was always wanting to be around my friends. I took for granted the time I spent with my family. It never crossed my mind that a time will come that I will be missing the days with them, wishing I spent more time interacting with them. Knowing them and making them feel the love and appreciation they deserve.
Unfortunately, during our younger years, we aren’t really aware of the concept of time and life. I guess it’s one of the reasons children can always be happy and carefree. But most grown ups are well aware, and yet not everyone spend their lifetime doing what they want or being with the people they love. It’s comprehensible that there are many complex reasons as to why things are the way they are. But we only have a portion of a lifetime to do something about it.
I have lost grandmothers and grandfathers. People whose existence mattered. But how many hours have I spent with them? Did they know I loved them? Did they feel that I cared? Did they think I’d be one of the people to cry my eyes out when they finally finished their race in this life? I long to make my loved ones proud of the person I am or the person I will be. But I still haven’t gotten anywhere. I grew up too late to realize the things I now know. I grew up too late for them to see how I treasure them.
Let’s not forget to make our love ones feel we are there. Start appreciating the time spent with them and pay forward all the things they did for us, even if we weren’t aware of it.