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Seeing the FutureTheoretical Perspectives on Future-Oriented Mental Time Travel$
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Kourken Michaelian, Stanley B. Klein, and Karl K. Szpunar

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780190241537

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190241537.001.0001

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The Role of Personal Goals in Future-Oriented Mental Time Travel

The Role of Personal Goals in Future-Oriented Mental Time Travel

Chapter:
(p.199) 10 The Role of Personal Goals in Future-Oriented Mental Time Travel
Source:
Seeing the Future
Author(s):

Arnaud D’Argembeau

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190241537.003.0010

What gives one the subjective feeling that an event currently represented in one’s mind refers to something that might happen in one’s personal future? The purpose of this chapter is to explore the idea that this feeling not only requires event simulation processes, but also the contextualization of imagined situations within higher-order knowledge about the self and one’s life. Knowledge about personal goals might play a particularly important role in this respect, and an important function of future-oriented mental time travel may indeed be to allow the detailed simulation of future possibilities in the service of effective goal pursuit. Support for this view is presented and discussed, with recent findings showing that personal goals influence the construction and organization of future-oriented thoughts, and contribute to the subjective sense of pre-experiencing one’s personal future.

Keywords:   future, pre-experience, goals, self, mental time travel

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