If you’re struggling to make a decision, it can leave you feeling stuck and defeated. It can be tempting to ask people for their opinions, which often has the opposite impact that you’re looking for. Instead of gaining clarity, you gain more opinions and more overwhelm.
Instead of looking externally for what you should do to make the best decision for you, in this podcast, you’ll learn how to get advice from your Future Self to help you make the right decision for you. Your Future Self has more wisdom and better advice than your best friend, therapist, and most trusted confident. Why? Because she knows you the best. She’s knows your heart and can help you through anything.
In this podcast, you’ll learn how to make decisions from your Future Self so you can start making better decisions today and live with fewer regrets.
Hi there. Welcome to the Design Your Dream Life podcast. My name is Natalie Bacon and I’m an Advanced Certified Mindfulness Life Coach as well as a wife and mom, if you’re here to do the inner work and grow, I can help. Let’s get started.
Hello my friend. Welcome to the podcast. I did a podcast a while back called Future Self or Your Future Self, something like that. And it was a different spin on this. So if you haven’t listened to that, that can be really useful if you’re unfamiliar with your relationship with your future self and how you can utilize that tool to live more intentionally, kind of stop repeating the past and start living the life that you want.
I know that sounds kind of, um, broad, but you know, I’ll give you like one example that I think we can all relate to. Let’s say that you’ve struggled to lose weight for decades. If you continue to refer to your past self and look at that evidence that you haven’t been able to before, you’ll create more of that in the future. Instead, what you can do is you can access advice and wisdom and the how-tos from your future self who has lost the weight. And just this subtle shift in the framework with which you are thinking can help you take much better actions for something like weight loss. And of course it applies to any change that you want to make. If you are looking to your past, you’re going to create more of your past, which is amazing if that’s what you wanna do.
But for most of us who have a challenge or have a goal or we wanna make progress in our lives, we want to get advice from that future self because it’s related to something that we don’t want to do more of. From the past when I was dating, I remember I would just date the same type of guy over and over because my brain was so familiar with it. It’s that pattern. And it wasn’t until I really accessed my future self wisdom and who I wanted to be as a wife and mom, that I was able to make better decisions with dating. And I’m so glad that I did that because I was really able to break bad habits, bad patterns of dating guys who, um, wouldn’t have served me in the long run. And now I have an amazing husband and a family that I wouldn’t have had otherwise.
So the future self can can sound a little bit out there and yet, practically speaking, it makes such a big difference in, um, the trajectory of your life. Today I wanna talk more specifically about getting advice from your future self. You know exactly what you should do for any decision that you are making. You just need a little bit of help accessing the part of you who knows what to do. So a little bit of background first I think will be helpful here. As your coach, my job is not to tell you what to do. I have no idea what you should do. My job is to show you how you are thinking about something so that you can decide on purpose if that’s how you want to be thinking about that thing. And then from there, take better actions so you will make better decisions.
You will have fewer regrets all when you start with your mindset. So for example, let’s say that your spouse isn’t coming home on time and you feel really irritated. If you work with other types of coaches or even therapists, they might tell you what actions specifically to take or they might kind of tell you to tell him your needs or try to get you to do some things to change him. And I am all for taking actions if they work. But in my experience, when clients come to me and the work that I do in the world, we are past that we’ve made requests, spouse still isn’t coming home on time and we can’t change ’em. So focusing more on what we can’t control only leaves us feeling miserable. And as someone who definitely would prefer to control other people in the world, I can speak firsthand to this, that whenever I am focused on trying to control others, I feel so miserable.
So in this example, and I promise we’re gonna circle back, there is a point to this related to your future self. But take this example. Your spouse isn’t coming home on time and you feel really irritated. The advice from a lot of coaches and therapists would tell you actions to take. I am trained differently. I am trained as a causal coach, which means that I can help you get to the root cause of any challenge. And then you get to decide on purpose how you want to show up intentionally. It’s conscious thinking. So in this example, when your spouse isn’t coming home on time and you feel irritated, I can show you your mindset. I like to think of us sitting on the couch together. There’s a projector screen in front of us and I’m showing you what’s happening in that mind of yours.
And I’m never here to tell you that you shouldn’t be thinking what you’re thinking, but I am here to show you exactly what you’re thinking and how that’s creating the results that you have in your life. So in this example, I can show you that it’s your mindset that he’s doing something wrong, that he should come home on time, that’s creating the feeling of irritation. And once I show you that, you get to decide is that how you want to think or do you want to think something different? The reason that this is so powerful again, is because you can’t change husband. You can make requests. I am all for making requests. But if husbands still decides to come home when he wants to come home, then what you’re left with is controlling what you can control, which is you.
So once you can see that you can completely change your thinking, you can drop the irritation and feel so much more connected and empowered in your life. And then from there you will know what to do. Okay, so I, I promise you, I was getting back to the part where you know what to do when clients come to me and they say, what should I do about this? Or what should I say in this situation? It’s not that that’s a bad question, it’s just that that’s the bad first question. You don’t wanna ask that question first because you have to get to a place of clean thinking of separating out your thoughts from everything else before you can make a really good deliberate decision. And that’s the work that I do with my clients. It’s about thinking consciously, thinking deliberately instead of thinking on default because then you get to choose your happiness.
You get to choose how your marriage is gonna go. You get to feel more empowered and more joy and some things you get to decide on if you want to let go and other things you might want to be a bigger deal. But when you understand that the mindset is at the root cause of all of it, it will set you free. I really promise you this. So how does this relate to getting advice from your future self? Well, understanding that you are the one who has the best advice for you. And knowing that that advice comes from your thoughts is going to be what gets you to actually utilize this tool. So you don’t always have to get advice from your future self, but I think it’s such a great place to start once you’re aware of what you’re thinking right now. So in that example, if you are aware that you’re thinking, I think my husband should be different than he is, I think he should come home when he says that he should.
You can ask your future self for advice future self. What do you think I should think about this? How do you think I should feel about this? Should I let it go? Should I have a conversation with him? Should it be different? How should I think about this to empower myself? You can ask your future self all sorts of questions that will leave you feeling so much more empowered and connected and you will get specific advice from her that I could never give you. I promise you, even as I was preparing this, I was thinking of examples in my own life and got so much more clarity on some things that I was thinking about that I hadn’t asked my future self for advice on. So it really, really does work. And the only thing you have to do is just consider the challenge or what you want advice on and ask your future self what you think you should do.
And it works wonders. Your future self is so wise and she will know better than anyone else what you should do. I wanna give you some hypothetical examples where you might access wisdom from your future self. Let’s say that your daughter was diagnosed with depression and your first thought is, I don’t know what to do. I don’t know how to help her. I don’t know what she needs from me. I don’t know, I dont know, I don’t know. There’s a lot of confusion you’re feeling. Ask yourself, what does your future self think that you should do? How can you show up as a supportive, connected, strong mom in this circumstance? What advice does your future self have? To give you another example, let’s say your mother-in-law isn’t respecting your boundaries with your kids. What advice does your future self have to give you? I love this question so much because it really does ignore things that don’t matter.
So in the moment, your brain considers things that really don’t matter for making a decision like the judgment of of other people, their approval, your own judgment of yourself, your worries, your fears of failure or embarrassment or of making a mistake. When you access that wisdom of your future self, it cleans all of that up. Now, once you get the advice from your future self, you get to decide if you’re going to take it or not. Just because she gives you that advice doesn’t mean you have to do it, but it really does help make a decision and particularly get you out of any sort of the confusion.
You may access this tool and use it when you’re feeling kind of upset. So I recently had a client try to steal from me and I was so upset about it. And it was interesting because when I accessed my future self and I really asked her, is this something I wanna be upset about? The answer was no, not at all. I didn’t wanna waste time or effort or any of my thoughts on what was happening and it didn’t make the upsetness go away right away, but it added so much perspective. Like in the moment my brain felt like it was so dramatic and it was a really big deal and I needed to do something about it. And my future self really just told me I didn’t need to worry so much about it. It wasn’t a big deal. This person wasn’t worth all of the emotional, um, kind of toll that it was taking on me and that I could let it go.
I loved getting advice about that. I was thinking back on my own life and some personal examples that I wanted to share with you. How using this tool of accessing advice from my future self has been so helpful. When I was practicing as an attorney, I was thinking very seriously about quitting and shifting careers and then running my own business. And I really spent some time and was very thoughtful about that decision. And one way that I was able to get to complete peace over it was thinking from my future self and I went far into the future, I was thinking about myself 80, 90 years old, um, thinking back on my life, would I have hoped that I would’ve made this career switch? And the answer was yes. It was so clearly a yes, which was really, really helpful. I remember when my dad was sick in the hospital and I was on a trip about to fly somewhere else for the second leg of my trip and I wasn’t sure if I should cancel my trip and go out of state to see him.
And this was made more complex because he had had some health challenges for years and kind of, you know, been in and out of, of the hospital from time to time. And if it wasn’t that big of a deal, I didn’t wanna cancel my trips. And so I accessed this tool. I said, okay, thinking about my future self down the road, looking back, what would I have hoped that I did? And it was so clear to me that I needed to go see my dad. And of course that was the start of, um, his process of end of life. And so I’m very grateful for that decision. Um, and the future self tool really helped me thinking about kind of the present and the future, making decisions about my life, my career, my health. This tool is really helpful. I was thinking about getting a PhD maybe, I don’t know yet, but when I access my future self, she says, yes, do it. So I’m kind of letting that just sit there and we’ll see. But I love that my future self just knows.
You may have heard me talk about sugar before and how I like me some sugar, I like red vines, I like chocolate and peanut butter together, the Reese’s Cups and even the quote unquote healthier versions of those with the better ingredients. But I still find myself eating too much sugar for what I want to be eating. And so I play around with the idea of giving up sugar entirely or putting myself on some sort of, um, protocol with it and and just sort of play around with this idea. And for a little while it felt a little bit confusing or overwhelming or if nothing else just I was undecided about it. And so interesting when I ask my future self, she came back with, yes, give up sugar completely and see how it goes. And this was so mind blowing to me because I had never considered that I was making the decision from this place of needing to decide permanently and forever what I’m gonna do with sugar.
And I loved that right away my future self gave me the advice of give it a try and just see how it goes. So I’m gonna do that. Stay tuned, I’ll probably talk more about it on the podcast. And then with drinking, I haven’t drank in several years. I think it’s been about four years or so. And I was asking myself from my future, should I start drinking again? And it was a no, not because of fear or there being a problem or anything, but the reason that my future self gave me was that it doesn’t add value to my life. And I found that to be so interesting and I think that as long as that’s my reason, I’ll probably stick with this. But I’m always open to deciding. I feel very empowered when I give myself permission to redecide. So your assignment from this podcast is to skip the part where you’re asking other people what you should do, what you should say, how you should feel, which decision you should make, and ask your future self.
She knows the best answer for you, better than your mom, better than your sister, better than your sister-in-law, better than your daughter, better than your friend, better than your best friend, better than your therapist, better than me, your coach. Because you have the wisdom within you to really know what’s best for your life. I always like to say I have no idea what you should do, but I am trained to help you figure out what you think you should do so that you make the decision for you. And that is one of the best gifts, that I think I can ever give you. Start small with just this exercise. Alright, my friend, I will talk with you next week. Take care.
If you loved this podcast, I invite you to check out Grow You my mindfulness community for moms where we do the inner work together. Head on over to momonpurpose.com/coaching to learn.