Do you talk to yourself out loud? Loud enough for others to hear?
Maybe it’s the result of getting older, but occasionally I mumble to myself. It’s as if my brain is so full, to make room, the excess thoughts need to come out somewhere. Or it helps me remember something if I hear it spoken. Or the sound of my voice is soothing.
My landlady, who’s older than me, talks to herself constantly. She mutters when she takes out the recycling, spouts monologues as she waters the garden, argues as she heads to the grocery store, jaw jutting forward. “Are you talking to me?” I’ll ask. But no, it’s herself she’s talking to. And she always sounds pissed.
If you’re going to talk to yourself, at least be kind.
What if you could talk to your future self? And what if, in the future, those words arrive?
It happened to me.
I wrote myself an email in 2018. Last week, it arrived in my in-box.
This reminds me of the movie Frequency. It’s about a father living in 1969 who, through a freakish weather event, is able to communicate to his son 30 years in the future via ham radio. Together, they solve a decades-old serial murder case. If you haven’t seen it, do. It’s fantastic.
Rather than people traveling through time, in the movie, it’s information that’s traveling.
Just like my email. Although I’m not solving any murders.
How did I pull off such a feat?
Through a website called FutureMe.org.
On the site, you compose an email to yourself, choose a date in the future for it to arrive, and click “send to the future!” It doesn’t cost a dime. No need to create a login. Just type in your message, select a date, and send it on its way.
Think of the possibilities!
Newlyweds, on the day of their wedding, can compose messages to their future selves about how they doubted whether they made the right choice, and say: “Aren’t you glad you didn’t let doubts get in the way?” Worrywarts can list everything that plagues them, finishing up with: “I’m so grateful you rose to the challenge, and it’s all behind you now.” A struggling artist can praise their future self for finishing a project, and ask for guidance.
Go ahead, try it.
Here’s what I wrote:
I love you.
I don’t say it enough, but I love you!
I love that you got a new job.
I love that you’re putting your fiction first.
I love that you’re exploring the possibility that copywriting might not be the path you want to take, but you’re open to taking it anyway to see where it leads.
Here’s what I hope for you:
I hope you set boundaries with people, so they know that you deserve respect and breathing room and the opportunity to learn from your mistakes.
I hope you allow yourself to make those mistakes, and that you love yourself anyway.
I hope you strive to maintain balance between work and what your heart longs to do, between what your heart longs to do and play, between play and rest, between rest and physical movement, between physical movement and reflection.
I hope you say I love you to the people who matter most in your life, and that you allow them the space to work, play, rest, be active, reflect, make mistakes, and do what their heart longs to do.
Forever at your side,