Beeminder Forum

How to Beemind Changing Auto/Car Oil? Going to the dentist regularly, etc?

I started this post as an open ended question, but I figured out the solution, so I’ll leave the post up. :grin:

I’d like to Beemind changing my car oil at least once a year. I don’t drive much, about 5,000 mi/year, so one year happens to be just about the right.

However, I could easily derail by waiting until it’s a beemergency, and then not having the time to do it that day. So I’ll beemind to make an appointment to change my oil. That gives me flexibility when it comes due. I can make the appointment for any day that’s convenient.

I guess that sounds obvious after saying it, but I wasn’t sure about it when first thinking about it.


An excellent idea, that!

This probably applies to a lot of things that don’t so much need to be done by a date, but need to be scheduled regularly. Particularly when the actual date is somewhat out of your control, such as getting a dental appointment.


Ah very good point! I’ve changed the title to reflect the broader utility.

Before: How to Beemind Changing Auto/Car Oil?

After: How to Beemind Changing Auto/Car Oil? Going to the dentist regularly, etc?


That seems like a good way of going about it. Sometimes it’s really beeminding those first keystone steps that really have the effect you’re looking for.

Alternatively, you can also beemind doing it on the beemergency day but set up your reminders so that they’ll start reminding you 30 days before that. That way you could make the appointment when you get your first reminder. That might apply more pressure to keep the appointment and to make sure to make it within that one-month span or to do something like take a break if that turns out to be needed because of restrictions or changes in your area when the time for the appointment comes around or etc.


Ha, yeah, I use that for focusmate actually – I can’t beemind doing a focusmate session because not every day will work time-wise, but I can absolutely schedule a session any day of the week.


Oh you mean set up a 30 day beeminder reminder. That’s a good idea. However, my concern with that is that I have 50 beeminders, and the reminder could easily get lost in the mix of reminders. On the other hand, I could also put it on my Google calendar, and I review my entire beeminder list just about every day, so I’d probably catch it anyway.

On the other other hand, I like being held accountable for making the appointment. But… I also like being held accountable for completing it.

So another strategy is to make it a dual task beeminder. Have multiple reminders (beeminder, Google calendar, etc) that’ll get my attention 30 days prior. Then making the appointment is 50%, and then going to the appointment is the remaining 50%.


In the past when I’ve used this strategy, I felt that the appointment was it’s own type of commitment contract, so I didn’t feel the need to also beemind completing the task after the appointment was already made.


Yes I think you’re right. I was a little worried that I might continually postpone the appointment, but on second thought, that’s kind of an irrational fear. Because if something comes up, I might reschedule once, or very rarely maybe twice, but I’m still going to make the appointment.

So there’s no need to include the achievement of going to the appointment as a beeminder, other than the satisfaction of checking off a box of something having been completely done.

I have a saying, “Why make problem if there’s no problem? Don’t make problem if there’s no problem.” If it’s really an issue getting to the appointment after I make it, then I’ll include that in the beeminder goal as 50%, 100%.