This seemed like a fun idea.
What am I doing?
Trying to have actual consequences for my bad decisions.
I keep “getting away” with not taking care of myself, in the short-term, and then burning out in the long-term. Burning out doesn’t have immediate very-bad consequences. I get the urgent things done no matter what. But actually, not burning out is important to me, because burning out:
- Makes me feel sad and tired
- Makes me look flaky to cool people
- Makes me work less overall, and especially on the most important, interesting problems
Ergo, I will force immediate consequences for doing the things that eventually cause burnout.
What is in the toolkit?
1a. Focusmate. I struggle to sit down and do tasks with Ugh Fields. (I have many Ugh Fields, even around things that are cool and interesting.) But getting up and checking the fridge 10 times during a 75-minute Focusmate session is embarrassing, and more importantly, against the terms of service.
1b. Beeminding Focusmate. Why schedule a Focusmate session at all? Sounds painful. Ah yes, but also painful is losing $5 when Focusmate doesn’t tell the bee that I focused sufficiently.
2a. Fitbit. I like seeing the numbers go boop. Mostly the heart rate numbers.
2b. Beeminding Fitbit. I don’t care very much about seeing the “workouts this week” and “water today” numbers go boop. But the bee does. The bee also cares that I sleep exactly 6-9 hours per night. And I care about the bee('s money).
3a. Todoist. I don’t do anything unless it’s written down.
3b. Beeminding Todoist. I also don’t do things that are written down. Unless the bee tells me to do one per day.
4a. A variety of supplements and medications. Sure, I could manage my health kind-of-okay if I stuck to a rigid schedule and diet. But I like doing things other than that.
4b. Beeminding all my supplements and medications. I’m weasely, but I actually care about knowing how often I take these, so I don’t want to weasel them. So they’re mostly set to a very easy and low-pressure schedule so I track them but never get tempted to make things up.
5a. Headspace. I crave the empty-brain feeling.
5b. Beeminding Headspace via Apple Health. I do not like sitting down. But the bee demands it.
6a. A subscription to a boutique dance studio. It is kind of like a bee, because I pay in advance for 8 classes a month, and if I don’t use them all, I very obviously lost $20 per class. Also if I miss one that I paid for and didn’t cancel, I have to pay the studio another $5 and also might get banned.
6b. Beeminding my workouts (via Fitbit). It feels really weird to fake a record of how often I’ve gone into an actual building. So I tell the bee the truth.
The entire suite of Cold Turkey products. I can’t Beemind this, but I don’t really need to. It’s pretty foolproof. I just can’t use things my better self doesn’t want me to use.
i. I blocked every website I use for hardcore feeling-avoidance all day, every day. I locked that block almost all day every day as well – if I want to take something off the list or open it up for a while, I can only do that from 9:30-10:00pm.
ii. I blocked my entire computer from 11:00pm-5:30am. If I want to stay up late, I have to decide and remember to turn off the block between 6:00pm and 7:30pm.
iii. I blocked very work-related websites between 7:30pm-6:00am. If I want to work late, I have to know I won’t get everything done and turn off the block between 6:00am and 12:00pm that day.
iv. I only let myself use most of Google (besides Scholar, Meet, and Drive) for a cumulative half hour before 5:00pm. No rabbit holes.
v. From 2:00pm-3:30pm, no one can book meetings with me, I have a recurring Focusmate, and every non-essential app on my computer is blocked except for Google Docs. It’s writing time.
Rize. I don’t know what I do with my time. I usually forget my entire day. No longer. When was I on the computer? What was I doing? Did I actually work for 4-8 hours? Rize knows. Beeminding this would be nice.
How will I know if all these tools are helping?
If Rize says I’m working,
and Todoist says I’m working,
and my boss says I’m working,
and I don’t feel like it hurts to think,
and my house is clean,
and I am getting through some TV shows or books,
I’ll be very pleased.
What would make this more manageable?
Mostly Beeminder folders. Or dividers or something. Altbee is okay but it’s weird to have a view on a different website than the rest of Beeminder.
Is it working yet?
Not really, I’ve only had 3 days with most of these goals.