This mind hack is simple: you imagine yourself way off in the future, or living in a different country or as a different person. The aim is to have that feeling of detachment, of stepping outside yourself, by whatever means you can.
This puts you into an abstract or psychologically distant frame of mind that has all kinds of effects on your perceptions of the world. Here are ten of my favourite examples:
1. Make challenging tasks seem easier
When you are finding a task difficult, increasing your psychological distance from it makes it feel easier:
“Activating an abstract mindset reduced the feeling of difficulty. A direct manipulation of distance from the task produced the same effect: Participants found the task to be less difficult when they distanced themselves from the task by leaning back in their seats.” (Thomas & Tsai, 2011)
So, it’s just as true of physical distance as it is for psychological distance.