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Why You Need To Forecast Your Feelings To Achieve Big Goals

https://blog.trello.com/affective-forecasting

blog.trello.com

Why You Need To Forecast Your Feelings To Achieve Big Goals
How would you feel if, six months from now, you lost your job? How will you feel if you meet the love of your life tomorrow? What kind of work will make you happy a year from now? How much money would it take for you to feel carefree?

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Affective forecasting

It refers to how we predict our future emotions and how certain life events will affect them.

We’re generally pretty bad at it—and that impacts our productivity, our goal setting, and our overall happiness

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We're bad at predicting our feelings

The main barriers to accurate affective forecasting:

  • Impact Bias: Your tendency to overestimate the intensity and duration of future emotions. 
  • Projection Bias: However you feel in the present, you tend to project that onto the future. 
  • Focalism: When picturing an event in the future, you tend to focus only on that event, to the exclusion of everything else that may happen.

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“Our ability to look into the future and think about what will make us most happy is the way that we get to a present that pleases us.”

Daniel Gilbert

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Seeing your goals differently

Affective forecasting is forcing you to view your goals through the lens of what you really want, what will make you happy, and how achieving those goals will make you feel.

It’s a practice that helps you confront peer pressure, other people’s expectations and learned behaviors.

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3 ways to set rewarding goals

  1. Understand the things that stand between your present self and your future self. That includes those natural biases, but it also includes situations and events you just can’t predict.
  2. Use mindfulness to get in touch with your emotions, to recognize and understand them, without being consumed by them.
  3. Consider outside forces and their effects.

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