Understanding the Concept of Future Self and Its Effects
Last month, we considered the value of a growth mindset in preference to a fixed mindset.
We'll take that one step further now and explore a recent revolution in psychology.
What makes you the person you are now? Who were you a year ago? Who will you be a year from now?
What is Future Self?
Have you thought about the person you will be a year from now? Five years or ten years from now? That’s your future self!
Most people think their future selves will be little changed from who they are now – their present selves.
Now take some time to think about who you were a year ago, or 5 or 10 years ago. You may well have been in school; your studies are probably quite different even if you still are. You likely had different interests, maybe completely different work and other pursuits.
Most of all, you thought differently and had different attitudes about many things.
If you think your future self will be little changed, why do you believe your transformative pattern will stop? Studies have shown that the average 18-year-old expects to change as much or less than most 50-year-olds actually do.
How Attentive Forecasting Can Influence Your Future Self
If we accept the premise that most people will change far more than they believe, why not engineer that change and make it happen for you rather than to you?
With Dr. Hardy's inspiration, I see great things for my future self as I approach my 80th birthday less than a year from now.
How can Future Self Impact our Decision Making
Decide who you intend to be at specific times in your future and change your actions now to let that future vision draw you to it. Circumstances will almost surely change your path, and possibly even your exact destination, but you can accommodate the changes consciously and continue to be the architect of your future.
Why is Future Self Important?
If you let your past form your vision of your present self, you will relive your past, bask in its glories, wallow in its low points, and make little progress in life. It can be inspiring to remember your successes, but you have bigger things to do!
Imagine yourself more successful than ever, however you envision success (remember, money is only one gauge: many people – Mohandas Gandhi and Mother Teresa come to mind – are very successful with very little money!) With that view of your future self, you can achieve success far beyond anything you ever did or imagined as your former self.
In his business bible Think and Grow Rich, Napoleon Hill said, “Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe it can achieve.”
Impacts of Disconnection From Your Future Self
Most people let events take them along for a ride to an unknown destination, like a rudderless ship adrift in the winds and ocean currents. If you decide where you want to be and who you want to be, you can regain your rudder.
Benefits of Connecting to Our Future Self
In the introduction to Be Your Future Self Now, author Dr. Benjamin Hardy relates the story of Mr.Beast. As a teenager, Mr.Beast recorded YouTube videos of himself at several life milestones up to ten years in the future. The videos were scheduled to be released as he reached those milestones. Though he predicted success unimaginable to himself at the time, he has now passed the first few of his milestones and has wildly outperformed his predictions.
Ways to Connect to Our Future Self
I’ve been continually learning this concept for a few months and finally, it’s beginning to sink in. To help you embrace the idea, I recommend reading Dr. Benjamin Hardy’s Be Your Future Self Now (his latest and, I believe, his best work on this topic.) Dr. Hardy has a Ph.D. in organizational psychology. He has studied and written volumes of material on the future self concept, and It’s quite possible he’s the world’s most knowledgeable expert on the subject.
A search of YouTube will reveal a wealth of TED Talks and other resources that can also help you get inspired.
I invite my readers to help me achieve my future self as the writer and author I intend to be by passing this message along to others who imagine an improved future self.
Consider how I, or your favorite mentor or coach, can help you achieve your grandest dreams.
Note: Archived issues of The Unity Community are available here. Search that page for keywords representing your particular interest. Most articles offer suggestions for ways of improving business and personal relationships. Keep in mind that business is done by…people. Every business concern is essentially an inter-personal concern.
A “Shot in the Arm” Every Day!
Eric Lofholm, my friend, mentor and sales coach, hosts a 15-minute motivational call every business day. The call is at 7:45 AM Pacific time. Register for it here. You'll find instructions on how to join the call on Facebook, Zoom, by phone, or in a recording you can access on your schedule.
Who will you be in 5 years, or even 10 years? How different do you expect to be from your current self? Want to talk about it? Reply to this message or click here if you'd like to chat by Zoom or phone.
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