I’m really three people. One of my personalties is my past self. The other one is my future self. And most of the time, I’m just my current self. My current self is just a regular guy. He’s busy, lazy and has lots of great excuses not to do certain things.
My future self is awesome. He doesn’t mind taking up any task I save for him. He’s also kind to people, always on time, very structured in his work, he works out regularly and never complains about any work I decide he will do for me in the future. Swell guy!
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My past self is a dickhead. He keeps screwing things up and my current self always has to clean up after him. I constantly curse him for not thinking ahead and making my life easier. If my past self had started working out more I would be healthier today, but somehow he couldn’t be bothered. If he had planned ahead a little better I wouldn’t have to manage all this shit today.
Luckily I don’t have to manage all my shit today, because my future self has all the time in the world. So I’m not answering that difficult email today, I’m not finishing that one task I need to finish and I’ll just delay most of the stuff I really need to do until later.
I see a lot of people around me who have similar issues. When I see someone smoking a cigarette that’s obviously someone who hates his future self so much he doesn’t mind if he gets cancer. When I see my kids delay their homework I understand they aren’t thinking about their future self which will be tired and irritated in the evening and won’t have the patience or ability to absorb any new information. And then in the evening I’ll see them blame everything on their past selfs.
Entrepreneurs are doing it too. “Never do today what you can put off until tomorrow” is our unofficial motto. Don’t plan ahead, fix it later.
Maybe we should all stop doing that for a while? Be a pal to your future self, take a deep breath, and do what needs to be done today. You’ll thank yourself later. All three of you.