Our disposition to focus on the near term can cause us all sorts of problems: over-spending because we feel low, making poor diet decisions because we're tired, not going for that run today because it might rain...
Banks, supermarkets, health apps, you can all help here. Consider including reference somewhere in your digital experiences to our own aspirational goals.
For instance, UK supermarket Waitrose might recommend us healthy options if it knows a little of our goals. The shopping experience could change, surfacing our goals at key decision points, or offering a basket-specific 'healthier substitutes' page prior to checkout with accompanying copy like "Be more you with the following healthy substitutes".
Importantly, such goals should be explicitly chosen by the user. But, once defined, timely nudges to remind and steer better behaviour become possible.
What are users' high level goals in your product?
In what situations are users most likely to deviate away from them?
Where therefore can you help them make better decisions by gently reminding them of their own future aspirations?
They will thank you for doing so.
Though the goal is habit formation, there's untapped joy in the tiniest of steps taken. How can we help celebrate each one?
Given that we tend to prioritise present needs over superior future gains, how can we make plans to bridge the gap?