I was invited to give a talk at the upcoming Fourth Eurosymposium on Healthy Ageing in Brussels, early November, please see abstract below:
For some people, wanting to live longer lives is genuinely motivated by a serious interest in pursuing multiple and different activities in life and realising the strict time constraints current life expectancy imposes on pursuing such a plan. For others, the trigger is coming from the fear of death and disease and the accompanying pain and suffering. Let’s call the former the upbeat, the latter the downbeat path to longevity advocacy. Both are valid strategies to pursue longevity advocacy.
The motivation behind the upbeat path should be confronted with hypothetical scenarios of how such a longer life would be experienced. How should we construct our life and ourselves if we could expect to live hundreds of years in good health? To answer this question one needs to use the tools of psychology.
In the first part of the talk some results of a current psychology study will be introduced that asked hundreds of participants to conduct radically distant future self-simulations. This work is the first systematic exploration of the mental characteristics associated with imagining life beyond current lifespan.
The second part of the talk will offer some longevity advocacy tips for discussion.
I’m excited about this talk because the study has grown out of a philosophical project of mine but was actually conducted by professional psychologists, which makes it all the more valuable, scientific and guarantees objectivity. The talk will be closed, so no social media coverage will be allowed but will share details here once the details are all in place.