Beeminder Forum

Trigger-Action-Plan Practice Club: Starting on December 20th

Towards the end of October, you may have read @alys’ announcement of the Hammertime club. This is sort of a follow-up to that, focusing on one of the exercises in the Hammertime.

During the month of November, we have gone through the Hammertime sequences as a loosely collaborating group. This has been nice! I’ve read a few people express that sharing the experience with a group helped them in different ways. I certainly benefited from the presence of the group. Another shared experience was that some of the exercises seemed useful, though the daily pace was too high to be able to focus on them properly. I felt this way about the idea of Trigger-Action-Plans (TAP), also known as “Implementation Intentions”.

So I’d like to try and find others interested in practicing TAPs for a month, starting on December 20th :nerd_face:

For those who didn’t join the Hammertime Club and are curious what TAPs are, here’s part of what @alys shared with us in the Hammertime Club area, as a teaser:

'Trigger-Action Plans (TAPs) are the if-then statements of the brain. Installing a single TAP properly will convert a single intention into repeated action.

Recommended background reading: Making intentions concrete – Trigger-Action Planning .

  1. Pick a bug…
  2. Identify a trigger. An ideal trigger is concrete and sensory…
  3. Decide on an action you want to happen after the trigger. Pick the minimum conceivable action that counts as progress towards solving the bug…
  4. Rehearse the causal link. Go to the trigger and act out the TAP ten times. If the trigger is not currently available, visualize it. Focus on noticing and remembering sensory data that will help you notice the trigger.
  5. Check the TAP in a week. Write down the TAP when you intend to do it, and check back in a week to see if its installed. TAPs can require a lot of tweaking.

TAPs take a couple days to install successfully. Today, we will practice installing two TAPs.’

I propose we copy the Hammertime Club format (which in turn was modelled on @dreev’s Book Club for Milkman’s How to Change).

In this format, we have a private forum area with the price of admission being a Beeminder goal. The goal should:

  • be public (the datapoints and fine print can be private)
  • start on 20 December
  • ideally have a rate of 1 per day - i.e., a daily commitment for the exercise

A useful commitment can be spending X minutes per day on “installing/reinstalling a TAP and/or reflecting on the existing TAPs”. For those who are not familiar with TAPs, “installing” a TAP is a 5 minute long mental exercise.

If you’d like to be part of this, create a Beeminder goal (remember to give it an initial flat spot so that it starts on 20th of December) and post your goal’s link here. I’m not yet sure how we’ll get you into the private area, but I’ve checked the idea of doing this here with @dreev and we have his blessing, so I suppose it’ll be fine :slight_smile:

If you any suggestion, reply here!

p.s. I copied most of the text from @alys’ existing posts :innocent: Thanks for organizing the Hammertime club, making this much easier and supporting the idea @alys!


:tada: I’m in! taps | alys/taps goal page

I’m so pleased the Hammertime Club was helpful, and thank you for organising this new Club!


haha! Just yesterday I independently had the idea of a goal to regularly practice TAPs. I guess this means I should do it. I was kind of thinking more along the lines of an anki-review style goal, rather than time-based. But since I didn’t participate in the Hammertime club, and I haven’t done the work of generating a list of TAPs or whatever, (though I do have a handful of questionably installed good intentions, hence my original idea of making a goal out of it), perhaps the more general “spend 5 minutes a day working on your TAPs” is a better idea.

Which is a very long preamble to say:


Oh nice! I feel doubly validated - there isn’t only one but two independent intentions here :sweat_smile:

The second being the idea of using anki (or an anki like review system)

I suppose we’ll get to chat more about this once we get going. Here’s where I stand at the moment. I’ve got an Anki deck for TAPs. This deck has custom settings. The most important one is that I have no “progressive spacing” on this deck (= I want to see cards in this deck every day, regardless of what I answer, except if I draw a blank and hit “Again”)

I have only a handful cards. And if TAP installation works as successfully as I hope, I should start finding some of those cards dull. If/when that happens, I’ll suspend those cards.

And here’s my goal: taps | oguzhanogreden/taps goal page


Excellent plan! I’m in on this, as I have been finding myself just failing to run my TAPs, and was mooting some kind of reinforcement plan. I like your idea @ozanogreden of using an Anki deck: I already review mine daily, it’s an obvious tool in retrospect, but I simply hadn’t thought of it. Good stuff!

Here’s my goal: tap | clivemeister/tap goal page


I didn’t do the Hammertime club, but I’m excited to try this! Here’s my goal.


I’m in!

You are! :slight_smile:

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