Money To Live

September 6, 2010

I put laundry away for my future self

Filed under: Uncategorized — by moneytolive @ 5:00 am

There are some things I just don’t like to do — dishes and laundry come to mind. I got over the dishes thing a few years ago. For 30 days,I washed all dishes immediately after using them (except when I had guests over and it would be rude/socially awkward to clean the dishes; I cleaned the dishes as soon as all guests left). I timed myself and was happy to find out how little time it took to wash dishes when I stayed on top of them.

The laundry thing — my primary motivation for putting my clothes away is so that

  1. I will not be annoyed at stumbling over my basket as I head to the bathroom in the middle of the night, and
  2. I will know exactly where my black tank top is — on the shelf with my other tank tops.

I don’t like the process of putting my clothes away, and I go ahead and do it (instead of, say, living out of a clean laundry basket), so that my future self will have life a little easier. It turns out this thought process may be a part of why I prefer to save money instead of spend it!

Some recent studies show a connection between how much a person identifies with his future self and his financial assets.

“People who saw their current and future self as more alike had real-world financial assets that were worth more—even when the researchers accounted for factors such as age and education.” Scientific American

When I see my future self, it is very much me, and I want the future me to have freedom and flexibility. I don’t want my future self to be late because she couldn’t find an article of clothing, and I certainly don’t want my future self to stub a toe. I don’t want future me to be burdened by debt because future me might want to travel or take a chance on a new career that won’t earn much money for a few months.

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