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Jour 131: Doing it all for my future self





I've been reading AJ Jacobs (of The Year of Living Biblically and The Know-It-All fame)'s latest book, Drop Dead Healthy. It's all about his quest to try to be the healthiest man in America by trying a variety of exercises, diet regimes, and other oddball experiments.

The best part so far is, after he takes a Paleo exercise class, his French instructor sniffs, "You are trying to be the healthiest man in the world? I am being the healthiest man in the world." Oh, the French. Never change!

Anyway, another interesting part is when he talks about the work of Nobel Prize-winning economist Thomas Schelling. Jacobs paraphrases Schelling's theory of egonomics as, "The key to making healthy decisions is to respect your future self. Honor him or her. Treat him or her like you would treat a friend or a loved one."


So, Jacobs used a photo-aging App, aged a photo of himself, and taped the picture of Old AJ on the wall for inspiration.

This is a very healthy way to approach things, I think. I have been known to think, "Yes, I am staying up too late on a school night, but that's not my problem. That's Morning Annabelle's problem!" And then I wake up the next morning, cursing the cavalier attitude of Night Annabelle. Similarly, I eat things sometimes thinking, "Yes, this is really fatty and unhealthy but I want to eat it, and the after-effects aren't my problem. That's Annabelle Next Week Out Bathing Suit Shopping's problem!" And so on and so forth.

So, like any respectable blogger with a serious procrastination issue, I found this website and aged my photo:

Current Annabelle
Old Annabelle!



I have to say, Old Annabelle looks pretty great here. She has clearly kept up with a good skincare regime. I also appreciate that she's kept up the same bright red hair colour. (Is ombre still cool in the future?)

So now, when I really want to buy that [insert noun, e.g. nailpolish, or chai latte, or sundress, or leather flip-flops, etc.] I will think, "But would Future Annabelle be happy with that? Or would she be happier to have actual money in the bank, and a smaller debt?"

Future Annabelle is very responsible. She'd want me to not buy the [noun]. She's off somewhere in the distant future, enjoying her debt-free existence. Hopefully not living in the wood somewhere, using twigs mixed with mud as clothing. But if she is, I'm sure she has a good reason for that. [e.g. someone told her that French people do that]

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