A couple days ago I received an email that really got me thinking. Actually it was an email from me written exactly one year earlier. Using a free service called FutureMe.org you can write an email and have it delivered to yourself in the future. This is not a reminder service, the minimum length of time between writing and delivery is 6 months.
Think of this more as a digital time capsule. Very easy to use, no digging up the backyard...
One year ago I was wrestling with a potential career change, lot's of internal debate about my next steps. I knew I had to make a decision, but it was a big enough one that it couldn't be rushed. The subject line in the futureme email was "so what did you end up doing?" And when I opened it and read what I was thinking a year earlier, it all came rushing back to me. I updated the message with what's going on in my life now, and forwarded it out another year into the future.
The fascinating thing is asking a question that your future you will know the answer to, that your present you doesn't and can't possibly know.
I am also starting to write future emails to my kids, telling them about everything they are doing right now and how they are growing up and what their favorite things are. I will have these delivered in 5 years when my eldest, just an 8th grader today, will be in college.
What questions should I ask her? So what college did you pick? Do you still want to be an actress? Did you learn to play guitar?
Try it, write a note to your future you. What question do you want to ask yourself, that your future you will almost certainly know the answer to?
It's interesting when you think of the future this way. What email
address will you still be checking in 5 years? Don't use a work
address, or one tied to a specific Internet service provider. I'm sticking with my gmail address.
What devices will you be using 5 years from now? Unless you bought the very first version, you haven't had an iPod for much more than 5 years.
Maybe that's the first question; "where are you, and on what device are you reading this?"
Say hello to your future you, from my present me.