Beeminder Forum

Old Year's Resolutions AKA I challenge you! Or something

Hey folks! So… inspired by @dreev & co’s rules on “no purchases unless you beemind using it”, and by memories of 2019’s Survivor Challenge, I thought it’d be nice to try and get up a challenge to help me commit to using my new treadmill. And since it’s about to be December, it’d also be nice to see the old year out in style… So!

The Proposed Rules:

  • Come up with a goal you want to do roughly every day (or every work/weekday) next month
  • Set up a graph for it, or decide on an existing graph
  • Post a description of your goal here along with a screenshot of how the road looks now (it may be helpful to go to settings and set your x-max to 1st January to show the whole thing) so we can see later if you’ve changed it
  • Add a link to your goal if you’re comfy sharing; otherwise, share screenshots as you go along!
  • Check in when you derail or need motivation, so we can nudge each other along

I can’t really offer any shiny prizes or swag, but we’re in this to beat akrasia and that’s its own reward, right?!

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My goal:

Use the treadmill 6 times a week for the whole of December!

My graph link:

https://www.beeminder.com/shanaqui/treadlightly

My screenshot:

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Still just me?

Ideas: walking more, eating veggies, reading more (I heartily endorse), squats, Clozemaster/Duolingo… C’moooon. :slight_smile:

In the meantime, my treadmill has arrived so I’ve made a start. I need to be careful; I was going barefoot because my shoes are muddy, but since I roll my feet inwards if I don’t have an insole… this was, on balance, a bad idea. I’m gonna buy some new trainers (…and another pair of insoles, sigh)!

Okay, I am joining.

My goal:

Study Statistics and Probability on Khan Academy for 25 minutes (one Pomodoro) per day.

Meta goal:

Create good Anki flashcards to not have to relearn the same concepts for the rest of my life.

Reason:

I have done some classes about advanced algorithms lately and my math to analyze random algorithms is a bit rusty.

Graph Link:

https://www.beeminder.com/felixm/random

Screenshot:

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My goal:

Spend at least 15 minutes a day on my two ovedue tax returns.
If I finish them in December, start collating the data I already have for this year’s and/or planning the steps needed to get it done on time.

My graph link:

https://www.beeminder.com/alys/tax

My screenshot:

image

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The reason I suggested having a screenshot is so that we can see that your graph has stayed the same for the whole of the month – e.g. you can look at my goal and if I suddenly add a break for 24th-26th December now, you’ll be able to see that that wasn’t in the original screenshot. If you used the SVG (which I think can be done, but I don’t know how) then we wouldn’t be able to tell if you changed it!

I went through a lot of that material recently! Good luck. I hope you find it easier than me. :sweat_smile: Not a math person.

Aaaah taxes. :scream:

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Got it, that makes sense. I have added a screenshot and the link to the goal.

I went through a lot of that material recently! Good luck. I hope you find it easier than me. :sweat_smile: Not a math person.

Thanks! I enjoy stochastic in general, my only issue is that I forget things and then I get upset when I know that I was able to solve a certain problem in the past. Hence, my plan to create proper Anki cards to avoid that in the future.

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Rather you than me, @felixm! :stuck_out_tongue:

In the meantime, this is probably the effect of the new shiny, but I’m probably going to do a second stint on the treadmill today. Technically my goal counts “sessions”, with no definition of what counts as a session. I was planning to count anything over 15 minutes, basically to help build a habit of it where I’ll use it for at least some time every day…

Which is fine as far as it goes, but what about multiple sessions in a single day? I’m thinking maybe add it to the comments, but not to the datapoint, as it’s specifically about building a habit of using the treadmill every day rather than “reach a certain number of sessions”. What do folks think?

This yes, or anything with a similar effect (max safe days?). Daily habit building is important.

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Yeah, I thought about that or skatesum, but max safe days might backfire (I do need to be able to be off on Christmas Day) and skatesum wouldn’t work well with the rate set to 6/week therefore 0.86/day. Ooh, ooh, maybe nonzero or binary? I’ll need to remind myself of those/the difference between them, but that might work.

EDIT: I regret to inform that I have broken this goal quite comprehensively and it will currently give you a 500 error and spray out error emails to support. Oops.

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OK, I’m in.

Goal: Post some music to Soundcloud five times a week. I’ve acquired a few new musical instruments and tools during lockdown but haven’t recorded much music that I’m ready to share. Posting stuff publicly (likely just short scraps and experiments to start with, maybe complete tracks later) will hopefully make me more intentional about practising/playing every day, and maybe get over my fear of posting music that other people might listen to. #showyourwork

Starting graph:

Link: https://www.beeminder.com/claudine/soundcloud-tracks

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@claudine Ooh, I look forward to hearing how that goes! Welcome in. :smiley:

My goal: Give using a Zettelkasten a decent try (5 days/week, 15 minutes a day tracked by another goal) for the whole month of December. It seems like it could be uniquely helpful for a project.

The graph is here.

Screenshot:

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Allllright, how’s everyone doing so far? Mine’s going pretty well, with some expected days off due to external factors:

E.g. today I will not log an entry because I have both a tutorial and an appointment, neatly in the chunk of my day that I normally use to hop on the treadmill. But this is the kind of thing I planned for by setting my rate to 6/week.

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I don’ wanna do it!!! :frowning: It’s so hard and boring. The goal was helping for several days, and I know it will again, but it’s derailed twice and and will again today. I’ll get back to it tomorrow though I think.

:blue_heart: You can do it! And once it’s done, it’ll be all out of the way and off your mind!

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I’m doing good!

I’ve put in a good amount of time, too. I was helped greatly by an enforced shift in my sleep cycle (paper walls in my new studio :expressionless:) and some calls with a friend that provides motivation and accountability.

Unfortunately, I’m doing poorly on some other goals that are very important but I’m not Beeminding at the moment, since I haven’t quite succeeded in my earlier Beeminding attempts.

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I am doing well too. I have ratcheted a little once to keep me motivated. I am trying to build a little buffer for Wednesday when I travel and I am not yet sure if I will be able to do all my goals.

The courses on KhanAcademy are actually really great. I have never formally learned probabilities and combinatorics in a systematic way so I have always just relied on my own conjectures for this type of stuff in college. Learning some corner cases and basics in a structured way helps a lot.

I am not creating a lot of Anki cards because KhanAcademy has this “mastery” concept where it tells you to what percentage you have understood a topic. I think it includes some time-decay, so you can come back after a couple of weeks and re-do the mastery-tests. I don’t know if they remind you automatically to do that, though.

Nice, I have “mastered” probability and combinatorics. As a corollary, I finally understand Bayes Theorem to the point that I can derive the equation myself. Really not complicated at all when you reason about it from first principles.

Makes me sad to think about how many students suffer because they are not given the time to understand things from the ground up and then have to reason from higher and higher abstractions without a solid foundation. I remember that I was able to derive all equations in physics from first principles till 11th grade, but then there came the point where I lost contact with reality and I feel like I have never caught up. Yes, I made it through college, but not with that deeply satisfactory feeling of having a firm grasp on reality. Maybe it’s just me getting older, but revisiting these concepts and understanding them on a deeper level is so rewarding.

I move on two random variables (which is the main reason why I did this challenge) so I am excited about that. Maybe I will rename the goal /random to /ka (KhanAcademy) and just continue to learn stuff there forever. For example, I would really like to revisit chemistry and biology. I just didn’t care about these topics in middle school and now I find it so fascinating.

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