Hyperbolic discounting

Tom Business, Reading, Science 0 Comments

Humans are rubbish at time management and one of the reasons is our poor ability to understand how we make choices on short and long scales. The example in the piece is choosing a meal two weeks ahead versus two minutes ahead: we go healthy until we actually come to choose. Two useful pieces of advice to overcome this:

  1. Make your to-do lists / plans in the evening of the day before – this gives you a little perspective rather than being bound up in the  (e.g.) email you have already got today.
  2. If you are asked to do something in the future (e.g. months), think if you would agree to do it this week. If not, don’t accept, even though your future calendar seems clear.

Tim Harford — Article — Here today, gone tomorrow.

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