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(p. 255) Prospection, well-being, and mental health 

(p. 255) Prospection, well-being, and mental health
Chapter:
(p. 255) Prospection, well-being, and mental health
Author(s):

Andrew MacLeod

DOI:
10.1093/med:psych/9780198725046.003.0011
Page of

date: 21 September 2017

Chapter 11 provides an overview of Chapters 1 to 10 and introduces the idea of a subjective future life trajectory. A subjective future life trajectory describes the sense that persons have of themselves being located in the present, but always moving forward into the future. The trajectory involves both short-term and long-term representations about the future, which vary in detail and value. Disruptions to the trajectory can take different forms, with anxiety and depression representing the two main kinds of disruption. A settled trajectory enables someone to focus on the present, whereas disrupted trajectories pull attention away from the present to try to ‘repair’ the trajectory. A future trajectory, and a present focus, can also be disrupted by memories relating to the past portion of the trajectory. Methodological issues that have been touched upon throughout the book are revisited and suggestions made for how research could move forward.

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