dan goldstein on the battle between your present and future self

Here’s his TED talk:

And here’s a comment I added to it, now buried:

This is really great work. The general term for the problem that this
research helps solve (and that commitment devices help solve) is
akrasia. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Akrasia
My only disagreement: Techniques that help connect you to your future
self, while valuable, are in my opinion bandaid solutions to the
problem of akrasia. Commitment devices go straight to the heart of the
problem. Goldstein notes the problem of weaseling out – well, that
means you didn’t set your commitment device up very well! Try
something like StickK or Beeminder. (Disclosure: I’m part of
Beeminder.)


http://dreev.es – search://"Daniel Reeves"
Follow the Yellow Brick Road – http://beeminder.com

I forgot that Dan Goldstein (the Dan Goldstein) is on Akratics Anonymous!
He’s off festivizing or something but was following along via his
phone and asked me to pass along his earlier email to me, responding
to my comment on the video:

… forgot to
mention that the solutions are band aids but good for financial
decisions in which you can set it and forget it. E.g. Choosing a 401k
contribution allocation. People never change those (hardly), so if you
are future oriented when you set the level, you will be ok. If you
don’t set them up at all, you will be in serious trouble. Most
Americans (not your messy matters post readers) undersave.

My own reply to that is this:

Great point. Sometimes a simple otherwise-bandaid solution can really
nail it, like setting up automatic 401k contributions.

On Sat, Dec 24, 2011 at 13:33, Daniel Reeves dreeves@beeminder.com wrote:

Here’s his TED talk:

http://www.ted.com/talks/daniel_goldstein_the_battle_between_your_present_and_future_self.html

And here’s a comment I added to it, now buried:

This is really great work. The general term for the problem that this
research helps solve (and that commitment devices help solve) is
akrasia. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Akrasia
My only disagreement: Techniques that help connect you to your future
self, while valuable, are in my opinion bandaid solutions to the
problem of akrasia. Commitment devices go straight to the heart of the
problem. Goldstein notes the problem of weaseling out – well, that
means you didn’t set your commitment device up very well! Try
something like StickK or Beeminder. (Disclosure: I’m part of
Beeminder.)


http://dreev.es – search://"Daniel Reeves"
Follow the Yellow Brick Road – http://beeminder.com


http://dreev.es – search://"Daniel Reeves"
Follow the Yellow Brick Road – http://beeminder.com