by Braden Kelley
Humanity is obsessed with the future, and we always want to know what’s next for us.
Sometimes we want to know the future so badly that we stress ourselves out about imagined futures that won’t ever come to pass instead of dealing with what is right in front of us.
Time is Not Linear
Most people think of time in a linear fashion, but this is the wrong way of thinking about it.
It is more helpful instead to think of time as a wave (or as a pulse) emanating from a central point in an outward direction, representing all of the possible futures. Then as the next point in one of those possible futures becomes fixed, then another wave emanates from this new point representing all of the new possible futures. The math of what the future MIGHT look like gets really big, really fast – as you might imagine.
This is what makes predicting the future so difficult.
The number of inputs influencing the next step in your future journey is massive, and the number of potential next steps that are outputs of your next best action is equally massive.
So, while it is important to plan for the future and to develop a point of view on the future you would like to be the result of your actions, it is still just a guess. Making it more important and impactful to look at the near future more often than not.
Recently I came across a video from CableLabs that looks at one potential near future:
We Are Already Living in a Virtual Reality
The first choice the creators faced was augmented reality versus virtual reality, and you’ll see that they chose to highlight augmented reality instead of virtual reality. I think this is the right choice as many people would say we are living in a virtual reality already.
Our eyes and other sensory organs do their best to provide inputs to our brain about the physical reality we live in, but the information is often inaccurate and incomplete. Our brain tries to fill in the gaps, but there is some much we don’t understand about how the reality we live in operates.
The world we live in is already amazing, and there is more value in augmenting our experience of the reality we live within, than there is escaping into another reality that is more clumsy, awkward and lower fidelity than our experience of the virtual reality we live in now.
Our world is changing so fast that it is important for organizations and individuals to not just plan for the next month or the next quarter, but to plan for what we would like the near future to look like and think about the ways in which we would like to, and realistically can, influence it.
FutureHacking™ is Within Our Grasp
But the concepts of futurology and the role of the futurist seem pretty nebulous at best. It is because of this that I’ve begun creating a collection of FutureHacking™ tools to help you.
These tools will be available to license soon, and I’ll be holding virtual, and possibly in-person, workshops to explain how to use these simple tools to identify a range of potential futures, to select a preferred future, and activities to help influence its realization.
I think you’ll really like them, but in the meantime, I invite you to check out the embedded YouTube video and to share your thoughts on how you look at and plan for the future in the comments below.
Finally, make sure you’re subscribed to our newsletter to get our weekly collection of articles, along with updates on the forthcoming FutureHacking™ set of tools.
To read more about what scientists say we get wrong about time, check out this BBC article
Image Credit: Pixabay
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