6 Ways To Tap Into Your Future Self
On TikTok there’s a popular trend where you answer the question: “What would you tell your past self so your present self would have a better life?”
This method isn’t helpful in terms of making you feel better in the present. A lot of people are left feeling empty and filled with regret. A better option would be to tap into your future self from the present.
In a study conducted by Columbia University, participants were asked to identify the characteristics of three types of themselves – their actual self, their desired self, and the self they thought others wanted them to be.
Researchers found that people whose actual self differed significantly from their ideal self experienced more disappointment and sadness than those whose selves were closely matched.
Tapping into your future self can help you avoid being disappointed and sad.
Psychologists offered these six ways to plan your future self to be the person you want to be:
Create Soul Fulfilling Goals
What is your life’s dream? Researchers at Yale University that a person’s ideal self was often tied to their overall life dream. The researchers also found that a person’s life dream was often tied to an occupational goal. By creating a goal for yourself, or a life’s dream, you can begin to define who your future self needs to be to reach your goal.
The more complete your goal is, the clearer the picture of your future self will become. Consider goals related to:
The work you do and where you live will be large parts of your future self.
What achievements do you hope to obtain?
And consider your lifestyle. Do you want a large or small group of friends, to be married or single, to travel, or to be a vital part of your community?
Your life’s dream shapes who your future self needs to be.
Take Calculated Risks
According to a study in the journal Current Directions in Psychological Science, the brain processes reward and risk differently when a person feels stressed. Under stress, people are more likely to make rewarding choices than risky ones.
But to accomplish your goals, some risk is necessary.
When planning your future self, you can remain calm and consider which risks you are willing to take in life and what the rewards could be.
Build Better Relationships
A study conducted by Harvard University concluded that relationships are the main reason people feel fulfilled in life. There are many different types of relationships, including:
Consider what types of relationships your future self will need and want. If you’re outgoing, you may want a large group of friends. Or you may prefer a small group of friends who know you well and support your goals.
You also need to decide if a romantic relationship is important to you. Collaborative relationships at work or in your community can help you reach your goals. Having a mentor can also help you succeed while being a mentor to someone else enables you to share your knowledge and compassion.
Take Small Steps
Your life’s goal will not be achieved in a single day. To keep you on track, break your goals down into smaller steps. Each time you accomplish part of your plan, you will increase your self-esteem and motivate yourself to take the next step.
Create a Vision Board
A vision board is a visual representation of your future self. You can create a vision board on paper or a computer. Use pictures, drawing, and words that describe the life you are planning for your future self. Referring to your vision board often will help keep you focused on your goals.
Write Your Future Self Letters
Imagine if you got a letter today from your past self that complimented you on who you are and what you’ve accomplished. If your past self could tell your present self how proud you are of who you have become, would it motivate you to do even more?
Plan to boost your future self by writing down the steps of your goals, believing you can accomplish them, and sending your future self letters congratulating yourself on taking the necessary steps.
Planning your future self should include your goals. Your goals help you determine who your future self needs to be.