Somewhat cured of Akrasia after ~2 years?

This is a small update about how I went from turbonerd to normal nerd in my ~2 years using Beeminder.
I think something clicked for real, so much that I am going to pause most of my goals. I thought I’d share it instead of going to bed at the right time, which is kind of ironic.:sweat_smile:

I realize now that I have the impulse to do things.

Here’s how it goes:

  • My room is messy, I should tidy it. I want to tidy it now!
  • Oh yes, but is Beeminder asking me to do it? Be smart and optimize!
  • Idk, guess I won’t do it
  • 19:00: uh oh, I have 10 beemergencies
  • tidies room very fast

Sure, that sounds bad.
But the truth is that now, I tidy my room, and I have the urge to make it better.
That’s a big difference from before, where I didn’t even recognize that the situation was bad.

I put a big break on most of my goals for one month as an experiment.
If I don’t fall back into depression, I’ll just put a bigger break, and next time, I’ll archive all my goals.

Broadly speaking, I think that Beeminder did this:

  1. Forced me out of depression by forcing me to do things once in a while (tidying my room)
  2. Taught me good habits that are now stuck inside me. I don’t need Beeminder to brush my teeth anymore.
  3. Pushed me to innovate. Okay, I cannot tidy my desk anymore, it’s as tidy as it could. But what about tidying my closet? What about decorating my room? :exploding_head:
  4. Reduced the friction to do the actions — tidying becomes an easy action, the same as unlocking my phone — just pick some stuff and put it somewhere else.

Here’s how I’m going to use Beeminder from now on:

  1. There is something I need to do but don’t know how / feel shy about doing (like, getting a haircut right now)
  2. I create a goal with a predefined end date. E.g. go get a haircut once every 3 weeks until I got 12 haircuts done
  3. I respect the Beeminder goal or pay the price!
  4. I learned the new skill, and next time I really feel like getting a haircut, I’ll go naturally :slight_smile:
  5. (if I loose the habit, I’ll create the goal again)

I learned a bunch of basic life skills, and now, I don’t need Beeminder.

I also learned the life skill of trying out new stuff even if I’m shy about it.
I didn’t need a Beeminder goal to go to the gym. Oh actually I did. I wrote in my journal. And I write because of Beeminder, lol. Some day I just felt “ready to go the gym” whereas before it was “too soon”.

Anyway. I might not even need Beeminder to learn how to go outside and ask for a haircut! Which is mind blowing to me. I’ll just do it one day, when it feels right. And I’m sure this day will come rather than sure that I’ll just let the problem get worse with time.

Some new behaviors that emerged:

  • I went to the gym
  • I went to a store to buy clothes, and picked from my taste rather than generic stuff (I even got cool chains)
  • I got lenses (and actually learned how to put them on without Beeminder)
  • I go to restaurants, coffee shops
  • I can sustain eye contact :flushed: (I could talk about this new superpower for hours)
  • I purposefully go outside to meet new people

I now realize how crazy that must seem to normal people. I feel like they were born with these basic skills. Or rather, learned them at school while I didn’t for some reason :thinking:.

Anyway, my point is that I am now a socially acceptable & normal human being somehow, and this is greatly due to Beeminder.

I just wish I saw a post like this a few years ago. I’m sure someone is going through a variant of what I’m going through. Hopefully they’ll find this post and it’ll resonate with them.

Thanks Beeminder :v:


This is so inspiring! Thank you for this post, it is a reminder of how much we can change, just a little bit at a time, until we become the sort of person who does these things naturally.