39 Ways to Take Care of Your Future Self

published Mar 31, 2019
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(Image credit: Federico Paul)

If you’re anything like me, you have a flurry of thoughts swirling somewhere in the back of your head—ones that whisper their contents inconveniently as you’re trying to sleep or sit and relax. They’re the voices you shush as you pick up your book or flick on the TV.

Not that you should heed their every intonation, but some of these thoughts are possibly (probably?) necessary to-dos that you’ve been putting off for years. Or maybe things you’ve always wanted to do or try. Others might be creative ideas you should maybe take a stab at; maybe they’ll make your day-to-day a little bit smoother.

Here’s a list of thoughts like this and maybe some new ones, too. The thing these all have in common is that your future self, whether tomorrow’s or the one you’ll meet a decade or so from now, will thank you for doing them now.

  1. Start a one-line-a-day journal.
  2. Look into that retirement account you’ve been wondering about.
  3. Pack tomorrow’s lunch.
  4. Check out some identity theft protection programs.
  5. Set up a password management system.
  6. Toss the wet load in the dryer.
  7. Fold two loads of laundry and put them away.
  8. Make a grocery list.
  9. Write down your financial goals for the year.
  10. Make an appointment for a skin check with your dermatologist.
  11. Make a habit tracker for walking 30 minutes a day for the next month.
  12. Change the dead light bulb.
  13. Cut some greenery from outside and put it in a vase.
  14. Go through the papers on your desk.
  15. Clean off the desktop on your computer.
  16. Connect your phone photos to a cloud backup system.
  17. Call your grandmother.
  18. Make a meal plan for the week.
  19. Order the supplement you want to try.
  20. Set up Amazon Subscribe & Save.
  21. Sweep and/or clean your front porch/entryway.
  22. Take everything that doesn’t belong out of the car.
  23. Create a holiday gifts line item in your budget.
  24. Find out what you need to do to create a legal, binding will in your state (if you don’t already have one).
  25. Double your dinner and freeze half.
  26. Make a list of household items you want to buy when they’re on sale.
  27. Wash your bed linens.
  28. Clean your oven.
  29. Chop the vegetables for all your meals this week.
  30. Have everyone put their shoes by the door for tomorrow morning.
  31. Set up college savings accounts for each of the children.
  32. Put on sunscreen every morning.
  33. Plant a few saplings in the yard.
  34. Fill your library holds queue.
  35. Buy a few gift cards to have on hand for teachers.
  36. Buy a few gifts to have on hand for kids’ birthday parties.
  37. Take inventory of your baking supplies, including spices, so you can replenish as necessary.
  38. Do a chore that you need to do later in the week today.
  39. Set out tomorrow’s clothes.

Do you have any ideas to add to the list?