Many health behaviors are characterized by efforts in the present with the benefits paying off in the distant future. Given of the obvious importance of time in health behavior, time orientation seems to be an important psychological construct in the self-regulation of health behaviors.
Time orientation reflect how one’s perception or weighing of the past, present and future influences decision-making. Time perspective has previously been related to a range of health behaviors, such as risky driving, substance use, condom use etc. Those with a strong orientation towards the future, generally display healthier behaviors.
However, research on this topic generally used weak designs with weak measures, has mainly focused on adults and was mainly applied to risk behaviours. Therefore, we would like to gain insight into time orientation in youth and in relation to health promoting behaviors (such as healthy eating, exercise). Possible research questions are 1) How can time orientation be reliably measured? , 2) Is it possible to promote a more future oriented time orientation?, and 3) for whom is a future time orientation most beneficial?