shanaqui's Beeminder Journal: 2023

[Pre-2021 Beeminder Journal thread ] | [2021 Beeminder Journal Thread ] | [2022 Beeminder Journal Thread]

Welcome to 2023, folks! I figured I’d start out the year by setting this up and making a post about the changes I’m making for the first day of the year, and then we can settle back into my routine weekly updates, usually on a Friday.

Ground Rules:

Feel free to join in and ask questions, poke me and give me accountability, chip in with your experiences. I’m game. If something’s out of bounds, I’ll try to just say so proactively.

I am very frank about my physical and mental health, particularly the latter. That means I’m usually happy to answer questions that others might consider impertinent or TMI… but I’ll let you know if it crosses the boundary.

Useful things to know:

  • I add goals for a subset of the books I own that I want a prompt to come back to soon. These are usually talked about in the “Project Bookminder” section of each post. Originally, I was making a goal for every book I bought, but that got super overwhelming. I also used to have them flat permanently, but now I have them only flat through the akrasia horizon, and add new breaks every 7 days. That keeps them in mind! I have a goal (/pileminding) that’s on the autodialer and makes me start one of those backlogged books regularly.
  • I use a few Beeminder-related tools that I talk about here: zzq’s browser extension and Nathan’s autodialler.
  • I’ll update this post if anything else comes to mind!
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Derailments:

  • None yet!

New goals:

  • /bibliophibianorbust - To post three times per week on my blog (which might be reviews or other features that come up, it doesn’t matter). Tracked with RSSminder.
  • /meditationminutes - Starting with a rate of 7 minutes/week, and adding +2/week each week. I’ve already set the increase to 9 minutes/week for next week. I expect to do more than 1 minute/day most days, but hopefully this will help me to slowly build up a meditation practice. I’ll add an autoratchet once I have a feel for how likely I am to overachieve.
  • /moredaysthannot - For exercising more days than not in the year ahead! Even the bare minimum counts.
  • /2023reading - Tracking the number of books read this year, via StoryGraph, since Adam got me hooked up with the ‘books’ metric instead of pages!

Changes to existing goals:

  • /stepitup - I’ve got this going again, and told the autodialler it has a minimum setting now, so hopefully that will help. Again, starting with baby steps, just 1000 steps a day, hoping that the autodialler will help me ratchet up the difficulty to the right kind of level.
  • /intensityminutes - Same, this now has a minimum setting on the autodialler, and I’ve manually set it to 10 minutes/day.

Project Bookminder:

I make goals for various books from my backlog that I would like to read and could use a nudge on. These are flat for at least 8 days when started, and then every time they’re down to 7 days remaining, I add more flat spot. This way, I regularly have to interact with them, to ensure they stay top-of-mind. I aim to have 15 of those at once. Goals that are in progress have a rate of 5 pages/day, and an autoratchet so I can never have more than a day’s buffer.

  • /splitting - For reading Amanda Ellison’s Splitting: The Inside Story on Headaches. I started it before making the goal, so it’s a 5/day goal with autoratchet, straight away.
  • /theatreroyale - Since I’m now at 14 total backlog goals, and 15 seems a manageable number, this is a backlog goal for Ada Moncrieff’s Murder at the Theatre Royale. It’s a Christmas mystery, though, so I expect to start it up soon and read it fast, hopefully before Twelfth Night. I certainly inhaled the previous book in the series!

Notes:

  • And here we are, embarking upon 2023… Happy new year to you all, and best wishes!
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Derailments:

  • N/a

New goals:

  • /metameditation - With Beeminder’s new meta integration, I decided I needed to add something to the /meditationminutes goal so I have to do it consistently, and can’t just meditate for X minutes at the start of the week and be done. This goal has a rate of 6.5/week.

Changes to existing goals:

  • N/a

Project Bookminder:

I make goals for various books from my backlog that I would like to read and could use a nudge on. These are flat for at least 8 days when started, and then every time they’re down to 7 days remaining, I add more flat spot. This way, I regularly have to interact with them, to ensure they stay top-of-mind. I aim to have 15 of those at once. Goals that are in progress have a rate of 5 pages/day, and an autoratchet so I can never have more than a day’s buffer.

  • /theatreroyale - Started this up… and indeed finished it! A very fun mystery. I still need to add a new goal to replace it, but I’m having trouble picking a book (embarrassment of riches)!
  • /splitting - Finished this up! It was okay but very much aimed at a layperson.
  • /headedforahearse - And finished this one too! Not my thing.

Notes:

  • A successful first week of the year, I feel! Partly with the help of my new tool, Amazing Marvin, with which I schedule my day pretty heavily (using the Agenda strategy).
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Derailments:

  • /clockoff - Lost track of time. Once @adamwolf finishes making me the klaxon that goes off when I approach my limit (:blue_heart:), I’m going to up the pledge on this to $90 to make sure it really has bite. For now, I’m relying on my mental math/checking up in time, and so I don’t feel confident enough of that to put $90 on the line. This failure was pretty much just that: failure of mental math, didn’t keep actively checking. I let it stand because I should’ve noticed from the clock-time that I was likely to be over.

New goals:

  • /2023pages - I have a pages-read goal as well as a books-read goal on StoryGraph, so duplicating that here. I imported the previous data via the bot so I had all the data starting from the 1st, and adjusted the graph to match.

Changes to existing goals:

  • /intensityminutes - Added a little break to this, as the temperature/wind chill do not permit for an asthmatic to be out there. At least, not this asthmatic, at this stage of trying to control my asthma!

Project Bookminder:

I make goals for various books from my backlog that I would like to read and could use a nudge on. These are flat for at least 8 days when started, and then every time they’re down to 7 days remaining, I add more flat spot. This way, I regularly have to interact with them, to ensure they stay top-of-mind. I aim to have 15 of those at once. Goals that are in progress have a rate of 5 pages/day, and an autoratchet so I can never have more than a day’s buffer.

  • /dinnerinrome - I made this as a new flat/placeholder goal, and then promptly started it up, devoured it, and now it’s finished and archived. Enjoyable, though the subtitle saying it’s a history of the world is optimistic. More like “history of Europe”.
  • /pride1_blindtiger - Another goal created as a flat/placeholder goal which I then… started up pretty quickly! It’s a fun read, I inhaled it.
  • /duetoadeath - This is a standard 5-per-day/autoratchet reading goal, for a book that I’d accidentally half-read then abandoned. Getting back into it!
  • /aquestionofproof - This is a longer-term backlog/flat-forever goal that I’ve now actually started up! A bit slow so far, but we’ll see how it goes.
  • /darkbetweenthetrees - A backlog goal for reading Fiona Barnett’s The Dark Between the Trees.
  • I owe another backlog goal to create, I think, which will be for Prof Alice Roberts’ Buried, but I haven’t got the copy immediately to hand to get that set up right now.

Notes:

  • As you can see, more reading now than there has been for a while! Which is nice.
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Just for my personal culture; wouldn’t auto-ratcheting work in this case too?

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For me, no. I am using it on my meditation goal in addition to having the meta goal, but conservatively: I don’t actually want autoratchet ensuring I have no buffer – and only having no buffer will ensure I do it every day, if I only have that goal.

The way I have things set up, the meta goal will be satisfied if I do even one minute of meditation, regardless of what my rate on the meditation goal is. If I ratcheted away my buffer on the main goal all the time, my meditation goal could only be satisfied by me doing the full amount of meditation every single day – which I’m not interested in at this stage.

(The meta goal still has some slack, with the 6.5/week rate, because I don’t want to be totally discouraged and doomed if I miss a day for whatever reason.)

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Derailments:

  • N/a. Amazing Marvin’s been keeping me very well on track with everything!

New goals:

  • N/a for now.

Changes to existing goals:

  • N/a here too!

Project Bookminder:

I make goals for various books from my backlog that I would like to read and could use a nudge on. These are flat for at least 8 days when started, and then every time they’re down to 7 days remaining, I add more flat spot. This way, I regularly have to interact with them, to ensure they stay top-of-mind. I aim to have 15 of those at once. Goals that are in progress have a rate of 5 pages/day, and an autoratchet so I can never have more than a day’s buffer.

  • /darkbetweenthetrees - Started up, finished reading it, archived the goal. It’s a pretty atmospheric book and a fun read, but not super memorable.
  • /buried - I duly created a goal for this, as planned, and then started it up quite soon after, raced through it, and now the goal’s finished and archived. It was pretty good and I preferred it to Ancestors, another book by Roberts in the same vein.
  • /duetoadeath - With a Beeminder goal for it, I quickly finished this off! Very slow and psychological; not a huge fan.
  • /hex1_hexbreaker - Created to take the place of a goal that got started up… only I’ve already started it up and finished the book (which is by Jordan L. Hawk). Lots of fun! This wasn’t a new book, it’d been on my shelves for ages, so I thought I’d make the goal to nudge me to get started, and I’m very glad I did.
  • /everybodylies - A flat goal for eventually reading Seth Stephens-Davidowitz’s Everybody Lies. I’m very curious about it!

Notes:

  • Everything’s been going surprisingly well for the past few weeks. I do think the fact that I am no longer a moderator of Habitica has to do with it; I suspect the regular interruptions to my concentration caused by user flags on Habitica, even when I wasn’t the one who handled them, were really bad for me. While I’m sad about everything that happened there, I’m glad about the way my time and attention have opened up, no longer pinging from minor crisis to minor crisis.
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So much this! Also I hadn’t realised how much background stress there was from it all. Working with the other mods was lovely but the whole thing was toxic apart from that.

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Derailments:

  • /inhaler - Even Marvin can’t make me take my inhaler! I feel like I need to apply my own advice from Troubleshooting My Toothbrush here… Why don’t I just do it in the first place? It’s inconvenient/I don’t get a reminder for it at the right moment. Why do I want to change that? I want my breathing to work right! Okay, so first thing to try: stick a reminder into Marvin for my evening inhaler doses, as well as my morning ones. Sad thing: I won’t be able to clear my Marvin list at the end of my workday… but I’ll see my inhaler reminder when I open it later to set up the next day. Done.

New goals:

  • N/a.

Changes to existing goals:

  • N/a.

Project Bookminder:

I make goals for various books from my backlog that I would like to read and could use a nudge on. These are flat for at least 8 days when started, and then every time they’re down to 7 days remaining, I add more flat spot. This way, I regularly have to interact with them, to ensure they stay top-of-mind. I aim to have 15 of those at once. Goals that are in progress have a rate of 5 pages/day, and an autoratchet so I can never have more than a day’s buffer.

  • /totheletter - Finished this up and archived it! It’s an interesting book, but I got most sucked in by the real letters included between each chapter, between Bessie and Chris Barker. I really wanted to know what happened to them both!
  • /everybodylies - Started it up, read it all, and archived the goal. An enjoyable look at how big data might reveal new things about us.
  • /turner1_scoundrel - For reading Cat Sebastian’s The Soldier’s Scoundrel, created to replace the goal I started up, and because it’s on my Litsy challenge bingo card this month. And I promptly started it up a couple of days later and inhaled it, so it’s already done and dusted!
  • /daisyjones - A goal that started out flat as a replacement for a goal I started… but which I’m now in the middle of, reading Daisy Jones & The Six (Taylor Jenkins Reid). I’m not a huge fan, actually? Not as compelling as the other book by TJR that I’ve read.
  • /ww3_princess - For reading Erica Ridley’s Nobody’s Princess. It was created as a flat goal, but – you guessed it – I started it quickly, and have already finished the book.
  • /amasterofdjinn - For reading P. Djèlí Clark’s A Master of Djinn. Started out flat, has been started up as a 5 pages/day goal.
  • /te6_babylonsashes - The next of James S.A. Corey’s The Expanse series, currently a backlog goal…
  • /wintersorbit - This is a reread, but it’s on my Litsy challenge bingo card, so I declared it to count as a possible backlog goal. I’ve restarted the old Beeminder goal from when I first read it, and otherwise it’s all set up as usual.

Notes:

  • I’m doing so much reading lately! My old StoryGraph pages goal (/readreadread) is looking a bit silly with a rate of 50 pages/day, and it kind of duplicates /2023pages in purpose. Still, I like being able to see the trend over time, so I’m going to leave it alive.
  • It’s kind of annoying me now that I have /2023pages and /2023reading. The latter matches previous years’ reading goals, but looks odd next to /2023pages and should perhaps be /2023books… but changing it now breaks links! Argh. Hm. Any thoughts? Should I ignore it, we think?
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