Stuck in the Now with Aphantasia

Living mostly in the “Now” due to Aphantasia really is usually a good thing. But I also like to have new experiences since I don’t “relive” past ones. For me that has started becoming a couple of trips a year, one or two usually “big” trips. And dinner at a nice restaurant, often actually one of the best in the world. Planning those adventures is one of the ways I “escape” the “Now” when it gets “routine”.

Now that I have a peaceful job, with little stress, the “Now” is getting very “routine”. That is something I wanted, and it is a good thing – and I have no regrets! But it also means I am realizing that I have a bigger need to “escape” this pleasant “routine”. So I think it is time to choose and start planning some more adventures! So being “stuck” in the “Now” means I actively need something to look forward to.

Living in the Now When its Not All Good

Those of us with Aphantasia seem to more easily live in the “now”. We don’t recall the past vividly, nor can we easily imagine the future. It sounds like this is often a blessing when compared with visualizers. And while its just normal for me, I have no reason to doubt this is often good.

It definitely takes a lot to “knock” me from one state to another. That makes me very “steady”, and that is a good thing when all is well. But when I do get in a “bad” state, its also hard to get out of it. It’s hard to recall the past good times, and its hard to imagine a future good time.

I woke up this morning with a bad allergy / sinus headache. But its hard to recall the great time I had last night. And the rest of the really good week. And the really nice job I have now. It’s just a headache, but I live in the “now” – and that seems like all I have if I’m not careful!

So I am glad I have been learning this about myself. And that my wife also understands this about me! I will be better afterall – and this is not much to complain about anyhow. And I do “know” this very much. My wife is hurting more with her back actually. So I need to learn more than the “now”!

Watching Rain Fall Slower than Usual

Have you ever seen things slow down? I saw rain falling slower recently. It was coming off our house during a storm. And I could see individual “strands”, and maybe even a few actual drops. It was fascinating to watch the rain fall slowly.

It’s really cool that experiences can sometimes seem so different. Sometimes time itself is faster or slower. Sometimes I manage to hear more sounds than others. Are my glimpses of these differences what non-Aphants normally experience?

Can You Please Repeat What You Said?

I’ve decided to start asking people what they said when I have no clue!

A co-worker was taking a couple of days off that was not planned. He told me something about the why, but I totally missed it. In this case it was because I had been focused on my work when he told me. I need time to shift gears and I did not have it. I knew I missed some detail, but he didn’t seem stressed about it, so I didn’t ask him to repeat himself.

The next day I came in and he wasn’t there, and I knew enough that it was a day earlier then he had said just the day before. Later our manager came by and once again I was focused on my work when she told us why he wasn’t there. Once again I totally missed it, but I rationalized it with a theory that his daughter was moving off to college – which is true.

Then another co-worker brought a card by for me to sign. I asked the who / why since I had no clue, and found out my co-worker’s father had passed away. It seems at first he knew he was doing poorly and was going to take a few days off, and then he died unexpectedly and thus the even earlier day off. And I never grasped what he nor our manager said.

This happens to me a lot. I focus very deeply on my work. And I have difficulty shifting gears. And I don’t do well when things are spoken fast. Some of that may be Aphantasia related, but some of that is likely to just be me. But I tend to not ask people to repeat things that our conversational, unlike in meetings. I rationalize that they will think I don’t care.

Yet by not asking for them to repeat themselves, I end up not caring because I don’t know what to care about! So I am going to try to step out and speak up – and ask more often for a repeat! I do care, and I want to know, but I need a chance to shift gears and focus on what they are saying. It may even take several repeats if its details and names – so I will start asking.