How much thought have you given to your future self? This week’s retirement headline explores the concept of nurturing your future self now so that you can increase your health, happiness, and financial security.
Over in our listener questions segment, I’ll answer a question from an anonymous listener about increasing their spending in retirement. They are looking for advice on whether they can afford to substantially increase their spending this year. Listen in to hear the Retirement Starts Today version of Suze Orman’s “Can I Afford It.”How much thought have you given to your future self? Click To Tweet
Outline of This Episode
- [1:58] Thinking about your future self can help you build a happier life
- [7:52] Who is your future self 10 years after retirement?
- [11:00] Should this listener spend the money that he didn’t spend in the past 3 years?
The way you consider your future can have a profound impact on it
Did you know that the way you think about your future self has an extensive effect on who you become in the future? A BBC article written by David Robson explores why this is true.
Psychologists have studied those who struggle to imagine their future selves and those who can do so easily. The results reveal a great deal about individuals and their behaviors. People who have a strong sense of who they are and who they will be in the future are more responsible with finances and treat others better.
On the other hand, people who struggle to imagine their future selves as similar to their current selves tend to be less responsible. They see their future selves as disconnected from their current life, so they act less responsibly in the present in both their business and personal relationships.Those who identify closely with their idea of their future selves worked harder to keep their future selves healthy. Click To Tweet
Your future self and your retirement
This idea of considering the person that we will become says a lot about our relationship to retirement savings. Studies have shown that the disconnection that some feel from their future self may explain the reluctance of those people to set aside savings for retirement.
Additionally, these studies could predict exercise behaviors and overall fitness levels. Those who identify closely with their idea of their future selves worked harder to keep their future selves healthy.
Increasing empathy and compassion for your future self can change who you become
There are strategies that can strengthen empathy and compassion for the person you will become. By developing a clear vision of who you want to become you can change your future. One way to do this is to develop an avatar of your future persona. Another way is to write a letter to yourself in the future.
These activities will further strengthen the bond between who you are now and who you will be in the future. When people are encouraged to have a greater sense of connection with their future self they will be able to make a positive behavioral change, so by following these strategies you could experience lasting changes in your health, happiness, and financial security.When people are encouraged to have a greater sense of connection with their future self they will be able to make a positive behavioral change Click To Tweet
Start changing the future you now
Although it can seem a bit awkward to start a conversation with an imagined entity, it can help that person become alive in your mind. It might even become easier to make small personal sacrifices to preserve your future well-being.
Now that you know a bit about how you can change yourself in the future, consider your trajectory. If you aren’t firmly pointing in the direction of your desired future self, then you can understand the areas that you need to start working on.
Think about your future self. Who will you be after your first ten years of retirement? I invite you to journal a bit about who this person is.
Resources & People Mentioned
- How Thinking About ‘Future You’ Can Build a Happier Life
- Dr. Benjamin Hardy’s 30 Day Future Self Course
- BOOK – Be Your Future Self Now by Dr. Benjamin Hardy
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