Predict Yourself

To act more on far ideals, predict what you will do:

Asking participants to predict their future vaccination behavior … substantially increased vaccination rates among patients with high short-term vaccination barriers (who, in the absence of this intervention, have low vaccination acceptance rates). These findings are consistent with past research on temporal construal, which suggests that people asked to think about a future behavior tend to focus its abstract benefits, and disregard concrete barriers that might impede it. (more)

Consider personal prediction markets, which predict what you will do in the future, such as whether you will lose weight, get married, get an A, get promoted, etc. By allowing your associates to participate in such markets, you could let them (anonymously) tell you what they really think about what you will do. Looking often at the predictions of such markets, and asking yourself if those predictions are wrong, could help you to live up to your far ideals about what you should and will do with your life.

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  • I blogged about and attempted microprizes a few years ago, in this vein. micromarkets seem worthy of experiment too.

  • Alrenous

    Predicting yourself is dangerous because you find out how little direct control you have over your actions, as compared to how much you’re ‘supposed’ to have or compared to the default self-assessment.

    On the plus side having accurate self-predictions is the only way to gain indirect control.

  • Robert Koslover

    Sounds like an interesting idea.

  • Anonymous

    It would be difficult to establish a personal prediction market- most people don’t have the resources? Maybe a collective Rationalist prediction market where we can bet on each other’s behaviour?

  • JLA

    When I was studying for qualification exams, I joked around with friends about setting up a prediction market to help us figure out how we should allocate our study time.

  • Do you think there’s base enough to extrapolate this exact result (this works on vaccination programs) to other areas like adoption of innovative clean technologies?

  • Michael

    You can use as a proxy for such a market. You have options such as sending money to a friend if you do not keep to your commitment, and you need only have an agreement that your friend pays you if you do keep your commitment. Of course, this is no longer anonymous, but it seems pretty tricky to have an anonymous market on your behavior in any event.

  • Lil’D

    I suspect this could be a great app for Google+

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