People are disturbed by a determinate lifetime.
That’s the lesson I’ve learned this week after I posted the “Life by Months” tool which lets people enter their birthday and get a quick glimpse of the months they’ve lived and a view of the months ahead. Many expressed that the spreadsheet made them feel unnerved.
I got a few people who responded with “memento mori,” or “remember your mortality.” As important as that is, I don’t think the awareness of mortality is what unnerves people. More than death, it seems to be the quantification of a lifetime that is unsettling. It’s an unusual insight. Time is quantified every day – we’re dominated by clocks and schedules and we’re paid by the hour. Why is this schedule more disturbing than the others