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Becoming less future oriented

So, if you are like me, dealing with semi-retirement and approaching retirement, how do you want to spend your time? I have taken on board one of Zimbardo and Boyd’s suggestion in their book “The Time Paradox” and am trying to, in their words, “moderate my future intensity”. People with a future orientation can, if they focus on it excessively; miss out on times with their friends and family and spontaneous experiences as they come along. As someone who is currently adjusting to semi-retirement I thought it made sense to try out some of their suggestions for becoming less future oriented:

  • Do less not more – not an easy one for me as I find being involved in a wide range of activities motivating. I have been keeping the weekends free in my diary for events as they come up and only taking on work which gives me an opportunity to learn new things.
  • Make conscious choices about what you must do and decide what is so important it can’t be put on the back burner – my to do list only has four key items at the moment and they are all things I want to do.
  • Stop going to events you don’t like – I am focusing more on social activities with friends and family rather than work events.
  • Practice giving and graciously receiving the gift of time – still a challenging one for me and definitely a work in progress
  • Try to minimise the intrusion of work into your home life – I don’t do any work at weekends now.

Their final suggestion is to start simply. So, while this approach may not be for everyone, do consider at least one small step to improve how you approach time.

NB: Here is their online questionnaire: http://www.thetimeparadox.com/zimbardo-time-perspective-inventory/.

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