Finding happiness via mental time travel

Finding happiness via mental time travel

It was the reference to that classic film _ã–Back to the Future_㝠in the title of this new piece of research on future thinking that first caught my eye. It was the movie by Michael J. Fox[1] that first made him a household name in the UK when it was released in the mid 1980s. The article _ã–Back to the future: the effect of daily practice of mental time travel into the future on happiness and anxiety_㝠by Jordi Quoidbach and Michel Hansenne from the University of Liege in Belgium and Alex Wood from the University of Manchester in the UK is interesting on many levels _ã_ for one thing I didn_ã_t know that the practice of imagining personal future events went by so many different names:

  • Mental simulation
  • Future thinking
  • Anticipation of future experiences
  • Goal striving
  • Episodic future thinking, and my favorite:
  • Mental time travel (MTT)

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