The key to maximizing your time? Enjoy the time you have – even seemingly ordinary experiences. According to Holmes, it is common to experience “pleasure conditioning theory2“As you age, which means unusual events become increasingly more ordinary, so you savor them less.
To make up for this natural response, simply pay attention: “I realize it [these experiences] “It won’t last forever,” Holmes says. “I actually count the times left and realize that, ‘Holy cow, that too, is finite,’ and that grabs your attention and increases your tendency to savor.”
Not to mention, if you look back and think about the experiences that made you feel awful, chances are that they are actually completely normal. “Perhaps it was the dread of witnessing an amazing sunset, or perhaps it was the dread of seeing your children’s delight the first time they entered Disney World,” Holmes says. “There is so much extraordinary happiness that if we notice it, and if we do not notice it and if we do not taste it, it is a lost vale.”