Time is the universe’s great paradox. Equal parts healer and destroyer, we spend our lives either wishing it away or crying out in desperation for more. Time is the ravager of the body and the betrayer of beauty, whilst also being a salve for the soul, a balm for wounds and a mender of hearts. As we grow older, we grow wiser, however at the pinnacle of our knowledge of ourselves and our world, our minds begin to atrophy and our memories fade like photographs developing in reverse.

The time that we have is a precious commodity that should never be squandered and yet so many of us do just that every single day. We will sit motionless, watching the glistening sands fall through the hourglass without realising that our finite stretch is slipping away with them. We will gladly put as much time as we can between ourselves and a painful memory whilst simultaneously lamenting our lost youth and the days that were. We will ponder, morose and melancholy, over friends and loved ones lost, without ever devoting the same effort to the new ones that may be gained. We either look to the future whilst forgetting about the past, or we spend too long looking backward with our rose-tinted glasses and fail to see where we are going. People hold a lifelong memorial for their mistakes and so forget to make new and better choices for their future.

Time both improves us and it ruins us. But the decision on which part of this we choose to focus is ours to make. Spend less time watching the sands in the hourglass and instead use that time to walk in the sands of a beach with the person you love, to make new friends and keep them close. Forge new memories. Take these new memories and hold them tightly so that no force of mankind or of nature can part you from them, but likewise do not linger within them forever, forgetting to live in the now. Live your life fully and fruitfully. Be the person that you want to be without worrying about the person that you were.

Time is the universe’s great paradox but it is also a gift bestowed upon all humankind. Choose how you wish to use yours, but be sure to choose wisely.

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