How to Beat Morning Akrasia?

Courage is not simply one of the virtues but the form of every virtue at the testing point, which means at the point of highest reality.

C.S. Lewis, The Screwtape Letters

Dear Bees,

How to cultivate courage?

Is courage something that can be beeminded? Ideas?


Courage is for loosers; true winners use discipline

My recipe to wake up:

  1. When going to sleep, set an alarm
  2. Alarm wakes me up first time: prepare the mind by taking Methylphenidate or Modafinil (any stimulant will do). Snooze the alarm (it repeats in ten minutes). Go back to bed
  3. Second time: prepare the body by putting on some clothes. Go back to bed (with clothes on, yep… to hell with hygiene)
  4. Third time: prepare the tools for the workday – put stuff in bag, that kind of stuff
  5. Fourth time: go outside!, where you can be seen by other people.

This works for me because it allows me to keep track of time, when in the morning, everything is a fuzzy blob of irritability, laziness and sleepiness that would end up on Instagram doom scrolling otherwise

If you really cannot wake up, either look up into sleep hygiene or physiological conditions (narcolepsy, sleep apnea, ADHD, depression… You’ve got some choice.)

You are not supposed to have a hard time waking up; if you do, something is wrong and needs to be fixed. Is your natural circadian rhythm such that it requires you to wake up later? Can you move your circadian rhythm? Can you move your alarm clock? Are you having practices that disturb your sleep (alcohol, nicotine, doing 100 pushups before bed, meditating too late in the day, etc… Tons of don’ts and a few dos to respect)

I take back what I’ve said about courage, because it takes courage to admit there is something to fix, when most people close their eyes and continue living with their problems forever :slight_smile:


To answer your question directly, yes, you can beemind “courage” in the context of beeminder.

Human is a creature of habits; which are hell of a pain to change. It takes motivation. Either you got it because of random life parameters, or you create it yourself. The best way that I found so far is a combination of Complice (alignment of yourself with your higher order goals) and Beeminder (incentives yourself to actually work towards these goals or improve their rate of progress)

So here, we are looking for “courage to change habits”, which can be translated to a beeminder goal that prompts you to “make a significant change in your life”

For me, I created a goal called “metastar”. Every 2 days, I have to make such a change. For instance, recently, I have made the following change:

  1. Start my day with a whole day intention
  2. Create a sleep journal to monitor and improve it
  3. Created a goal to turn off my phone before 2am
  4. Created a Tasker workflow to push me to build buffer on my beeminder goals (brushing teeth, that kind of stuff)

In this specific case: “make a significant change that might significantly reduce morning akrasia”.

I’ve seen @linux535 do it with their screen time journal, with impressive results.

I have no doubt that @april will beat their insomnia problem and become the best sleeper in the planet, because their are going to look at their problem problem every day. Then, with this, they will be able to create children beeminder goal to improve it, whatever it may be. Maybe it’ll be a goal to push them to see a sleep doctor, or a goal to use Exist to determine the factors that influence their sleep; or a goal to be into bed at 11pm and close their eyes for 30 minutes.

The keys to success in these cases:

  1. Looking at the problem regularly, and having a didactic approach to it; the same way that you can prompt an AI to have efficient reasoning by making it “think” step by step, writing allows to find good ideas. In public is even better IMO, because if you have a bad approach, you’ll feel shameful about it and/or someone will point it out.
  2. Trying out changes regularly

So yeah. Thanks for your post, it made me think a lot :slight_smile:

Beeminder FTW!! I’m motivated


Aside: Pavlok shocking alarm bracelet thing has effectively moved my circadian rhythm! I’ve been waking up fairly consistently at 6am.


Can you tell more about how you’re using Pavlok? I also want to get up at 6am


I bought the Pavlok 3 pro (on a subscription basis because I wanted to try it out - it’s $30/month, with the option to buy it out for $90).

The basic one is fine I think if you’re using as an alarm clock. You’ll want to double check that it has all the features I describe though.

I set the alarm to to 6am with the following settings:

  • no “chirp” sound, so as not to wake my wife
  • buzzing
  • require jumping jacks
  • zap me if I don’t respond
  • wake me up early, depending on my sleep cycle (it tries to be intelligent about this, and results in a gentler waking up)

So when it starts bumping, I’ve been trained (via zapping!) to get up and start swinging my arm quickly to turn off the alarm. It’s very hard to go back to sleep after that :stuck_out_tongue:

The zapping isn’t very painful, but sure is attention grabbing.

After about 2 weeks, my clock started shifting - now I’ll wake up around 6 or 7 even without the alarm.


When did you wake up before? And when do you usually go to bed then vs. now?

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How do you sign up for subscription? That’s sounds like something that would interest me. Also I could give details a real sting :honeybee:

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I think this is the link. Order a Pavlok 2 - Subscription | Pavlok

Full disclosure - a major life change (quitting my current job, working on a startup) caused me totally fall off the band wagon with Pavlok and getting up early.

I’m also swapped wearables - I’m trying the BangleJS 2 instead of the Pavlok, because it’s more programmable and I want to use it in another attention-hacking experiment. @april / @linux535 I can give you my Pavlok 2 if you want to try it and can cover the shipping cost. If you both want it I’ll flip a coin (heads april, tails linux).


Alright, I think I want it. @linux535 ?

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