Kable asked subjects if they would rather have an immediate reward, or a greater reward in the future. Those with greater activity in the part of the brain that houses imagination chose the latter. Kable believes that his findings can help people make better choices about money by triggering people’s imagination to think about delayed gratification and greater rewards.
This thinking contrasts positively with the ‘Age of Now’ framing in my speeches. For sure we live in the Age of Now – it is an accurate description and has compelling attributes though continuous gratification is not one of them. Sustainability is premised on the idea of a better future – and according to the UN’s Helen Clark, we are living as if we have four planets. Time for some active imagining.