when you lose time

What are you doing when you lose track of time?

I don’t necessarily mean when you get sucked down the facebook rabbit hole of paging through everyone’s status updates and spending more time than you should when you’re supposed to be working on something else.

What do you get lost in for hours?

Where are you when you look up and realize you’ve been at that one thing uninterrupted for a long time, but you enjoyed every minute and hardly noticed the time passing?
when you lose time

My initial response is that I lose track when I’m researching something or trying to learn something new.  I bounce from article to article with my million and one browser tabs open scouring through the best writing to understand something more clearly.  But that might fall under the social media example above.

I’m so used to having my phone on me that I need to set it down and walk away in order to not know what time it is.  (That’s always been an issue for me though! I have a habit of glancing at a clock and not really registering the exact minutes. So if I round up, then the next time I check it may seem like it’s about the same time…)

For any outside office work, I’ve always had to bill my time in 15 minute increments, so I’m fairly conscious of the minute hand ticking by.

When I practiced calligraphy for the class I took last summer, I had some occasions during naptime where I wasn’t interrupted constantly and got in a groove trying so hard to form each letter.

I knew quite a while had passed because I was hunched over the table concentrating and my ink was disappearing.

At a birthday/Easter celebration I didn’t notice it was already getting close to the kids’ snack time with an hour drive ahead of us.  I guess I got wrapped up in the other conversations.  Relatives were reminiscing about some old photos and their latest life happenings. There were discussions of major purchases like homes and vehicles, recent travel and immediate future travel plans.   For a change, the kids are old enough to play together and not need a referee the whole time, so I was sitting listening and temporarily lost the concept of time.

Even though I can see the light moving across the sky when I’m outside working on the yard or playing, sometimes I get lost in the sunshine and nice weather. This happens more out near the water or in the woods when I already feel “away” from a typical schedule.

Another default answer for me would be getting lost in book. I don’t read physical books much right now – most of my reading is online or an audio version.  I just have to be careful I don’t feel guilty about needing to do something else when I get swept away in a story.

Then again, maybe all these answers are about stories and their variations.

Time passes around me when I’m involved in a story – whether from a real person and conversation we’re having directly, or a story that’s built from pieces of knowledge I’m discovering.  Or, of course, a fictional character and her adventures in a novel.  I feel a connection (to something other than my watch!) and get pulled in to be a part of a story.



ps – What makes you lose track of time?