ISSN 1671-3710
CN 11-4766/R

心理科学进展 ›› 2021, Vol. 29 ›› Issue (6): 1086-1096.doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2021.01086

• 研究前沿 • 上一篇    下一篇


卢蕾安, 王春生, 任俊()   

  1. 浙江师范大学教育与人类发展学院心理系, 金华 321004
  • 收稿日期:2020-07-09 出版日期:2021-06-15 发布日期:2021-04-25
  • 通讯作者: 任俊
  • 基金资助:

How people imagine the future: The effect of episodic future thinking on individual's psychology and behavior

LU Leian, WANG Chunsheng, REN Jun()   

  1. Department of Psychology, College of Education and Human Development, Zhejiang Normal University, Jinhua 321004, China
  • Received:2020-07-09 Online:2021-06-15 Published:2021-04-25
  • Contact: REN Jun


未来情景思维(Episodic Future Thinking, EFT)主要指人们基于当前情景或过去经历来思考、想象未来的过程, 是人们对于未来的一种设想。根据已有的行为实验和神经影像学等多个方面的研究结果, 系统论述了未来情景思维的概念和特征, 以及个体过去的生活经历及相应记忆和个体生活目标对其的影响, 通过概括和分析行为和脑神经两方面的证据来论述未来情景思维会对人们具体生活实践产生积极与消极的双向影响。当然, 未来还需要进一步加强未来情景思维研究的广度和深度, 特别是要细化未来情景思维的类型, 探讨未来情景思维可能导致的不适应行为以及影响个体心理和行为的作用机制, 从而为人们如何更积极地适应未来提供更充分的实证证据和理论构想。

关键词: 未来情景思维, 积极偏向, 延迟折扣, 社会折扣


Episodic Future Thinking (EFT), a mental simulation of likely future experience, is critical to human adaptation. Accordingly, EFT has been explored with different rigorous scientific approaches-cognitive, neuropsychological and neuroimaging. Benefits of these research outputs are understandably enormous. However, these findings need to be properly organized to be accessible in a digestible manner. Therefore, based on the results of behavioral and neuroimaging studies, this paper systematically discusses the concept. Specifically, the study summarizes research findings on brain and behavior as they relate to individual's past life experiences, the corresponding memories, and life goals. Further, the study highlights that EFT is not solely positive; and demarcates conditions where EFT is potentially detrimental to the individual as reported in the literature. Strong argument is put forward for deepening the depth and widening the breadth of research on EFT. Particularly, the paper recommends further work on EFT typology, EFT and maladaptive behaviors, and the mechanisms for corrective measures or interventions. These areas when examined may contribute to theoretical understanding of EFT whilst expanding its practical utility for human adaptation.

Key words: episodic future thinking, positive bias, delay discounting, social discounting