Your Future Self Is...
How to plan for your future love, concerts and robot assistants.
By Matt Huston and Deepa Lakshmin published May 6, 2014 - last reviewed on June 9, 2016
Anxious about your romantic future? Beware: It may be coloring your judgment. People who worry about not finding a partner can start lowering their standards without even knowing it, University of Toronto psychologists find. High scores on a "Fear of Being Single Scale" predicted participants' choosing less responsive or attractive partners and tending to remain in unsatisfying relationships.
Before you run out to get Bruno Mars's face tattooed on your arm, consider this: We seriously underestimate how much our tastes change over time. The average participant in one study said she would shell out $129 to see her current favorite band—in 10 years. What were people willing to pay to see their musical heroes from 10 years earlier? Just $80.
Siri and her progeny are here to stay. Why? For one thing, such virtual assistants appear to inspire trust in a way that more "lifeless" hunks of metal and plastic can't. In a recent study, drivers of a simulated, self-driving vehicle trusted the car much more when it had a "personality"—including a name ("Iris") and a preprogrammed voice—than when it operated identically but without an identity.
Dreading old age? A Swiss study suggests that for many, the best—or, at least, the most positive outlook—is yet to come. Young, middl-aged, and older adults rated their life satisfaction in the past and present as well as expectations for the future. Each group, on average, reckoned that their present phase of adulthood would be most satisfying, but the top ratings came from subjects in their 70s.