Beeminding nights free from Beeminder

I have two issues.

I am highly motivated and therefore have set myself a number of beeminders both numerical and timer based that I want to complete each night.

I am highly akratic and only do the bare minimum on my Beeminder goals meaning that most nights i’ll have between 3 to 7 beemergencies on goals that I consider important enough that I want to maintain their current rate.

But this means I never have nights free to socialize or go to other activities because I always have to head home for all my beemergencies.

As with all problems, I’m trying to solve this with more Beeminding.

So far the thoughts I’ve had are having a Beeminder goal that is twice a week (perhaps monday and Thursday) where I have to get an extra day worth of all my evening beeminder goals to build a buffer.

Having a Beeminder were I have to flip a coin and if it’s heads I have to do an extra set of evening beeminders to build a buffer.

Has anyone had similar experiences/solutions?


I think you can very easily beemind too much too fast. I have fallen into the habit of wanting to change everything at once instead of focusing on just a few things and doing them right. Maybe you should consider building up instead of trying to do everything at once and becoming overwhelmed. It is said that it takes 21 days to make a habit so maybe you can consider adding one new thing to beemind every 21 days. Just a suggestion.


I guess I’ve managed to fall into a stable pattern, with most of my Beeminder goals being either 120 days or older, it’s not so much that I’m being overwhelmed by my Beeminders, merely that I tow the Beemergency line, but no further.

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I got you. Since you are highly motivated you have set a goal that is already challenging so building a buffer is probably really tough because your goal is already a bit of a stretch.

I was just looking at iftt and I have not tried it but it looks like you can create a trigger for when a datapoint is updated. So theoretically you can track how many times beeminder has been updated. Does that make sense?


You’re talking about Beeminding the number of datapoints you send to Beeminder? :mindblown:

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Some suggestions:

A do-less for eep days?
Change the deadline so the goals have to be done by 7pm so you’re always free to go out.

A socialisation goal, I like this one because it measures what you’re actually missing and isn’t day dependent.
Bonus: You can calculate which of your mutually exclusive goals it’s cheapest to derail.


Lots of cool ideas.

I do beeminder the times but I have work during the day so if I push it back too early then I have to do it the night before meaning I’m in the same situation as before.

I’ve thought about the IFTTT data points, how would you suggest setting it up? I have my coding goal which is a value of 1 for a pomodoro and my reading goal which is timer based.

Socialization goal is interesting, i do currently have a talk to strangers goal. suggested metrics for a socialization goal?

Thanks heaps for your thoughts guys!

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You need to work out what you’re trying to measure.
This was what you said in the original post:

So the problem you have is that you don’t have “nights free to socialize or go to other activities”, the staying home for beemergencies is just an excuse. Make what you actually want to do the goal[1] rather than beeminding away all the excuses.

How you arrange this depends a lot on you and your friends’ lifestyle. Maybe you could describe that. eg: Do you have friends who randomly call to say ‘wanna see a movie tonight?’ Is there a regular poker night every Thursday? Do you go down to the bar and hang out and see who’s around?

[1] Or even better, what you do to make sure that happens. Beeminding actions is better than outcomes.


I also think @chelsea raises some good points here.

I guess what I want is freedom to be able to go to the movie, or rock climbing or an evening presentation. I want the drive of an emergency to get my stuff done all the time but some credit or whatever that I use for important evening events.

This is where @dreev jumps in and says I’ll use my extra credit straight away. :stuck_out_tongue:


Im so meta, even this acronym


Love this discussion!

See also: Metamind.
And the obligatory link to Beating Beeminder Burnout.

I’m happy to Metamind, I just don’t know how to set it up to suit my needs.

How can do I set up a goal that forces me to build a buffer that doesn’t have me leaving earlier to deal with THAT meta goal?

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We haven’t actually built Metamind yet but you could approximate it with IFTTT now. I’m not at all sure that the fundamental problem is solvable with Moar Beeminding though. I had an eepless goal for a while and it was hard for me to stay on top of. @philip and @mary may have more successful examples of metabeeminding…

I don’t even know if that’s possible. (-:

I’ve experimented with a couple of variations on ‘eepless’. One was to beemind the number of days when I got my beemergencies despatched before lunch. (Lunch makes a nice deadline because it’s flexibly-timed and reward-like.) Another was to count the days when I had no beemergencies the following day (i.e. everything in the blue or better, not counting goals that can only be judged on the day itself) The current incarnation is a HabitRPG ‘Daily’ of having resolved all of my beemergencies.

Most of that boils down to doing what Beeminder reminds me that I’d wanted to do and not letting myself derail. If I keep derailing on something, maybe I don’t actually want to do it, or not so aggressively right now, or something else isn’t quite right.

I like keeping my evenings free, and will often derail if I’ve left any beemergencies until after dinner. But that’s just the price of my life balance, and is almost always because I wasn’t very focussed during the day. I might benefit from moving all of my goal deadlines to 8pm or something, since that’s usually how I behave.

Bottom Line:
Everything that I tried worked for a while; there may not be a permanent solution.
So make up a game, and play that for as long as it works…


I too am akratic enough to never pull things out of the red (except by chance, typically).

The feature I’d like is to be able to set the road dial to “7 a week”, but also be able to specify “Monday and Thursday off” — which would set the slope to 7 per 5 days, but have flat spots on Mondays and Thursdays – That way I’d just have to pull things out of red on emergency days, and get my days off for “free”.

I wonder how tricky that would be to implement…


That sounds like road dial magic!

I love that feature. You can get it now by “abusing” the road dial api, but it is pretty tricky to get right.

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Related discussion, and see especially the last reply by @mary who built exactly this, though it requires running php code:

After our remaining 2 autodata integrations (mostly done!) and revamped reminder settings, the Road Editor is our next priority, which may solve this whole problem very elegantly. Eager to keep discussing in the meantime, especially to make sure that the Road Editor is implemented the way people really want it.

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Mmm, I desperately want road editor, but that wouldn’t solve this, I’m seeking flexibility rather than subtle control over when goals are due.

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This is a hard problem with many edge cases. (Most of which I’ve forgotten since the last time I thought about it, so this comment is just to provide a flavour…)

The most common desire for specifying a calendar like this is to align to weekday vs weekend, to have flat spots on Saturday and Sunday. In turn, this means that folks tend to want to specify a ‘weekly’ slope of 5 units, based on 5 working days. But then there are bank holidays (national holidays) for which you’d like the goal to only enforce, say, 4 units that week. And for some goals, you actually do want to maintain 5 units of progress per week regardless of holidays or meeting-filled days. And then you need to combine it with take-a-break in an unsurprising way. And several other combinations that I’ve forgotten but which made my head hurt.

This may be an argument for doing exactly what @minstrelofc suggests and letting users specify a default pattern of flat days. But it may be more of a power-user feature than the simple description would suggest.

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