Beating Beeminder Burnout
Here’s a perennial topic on Akratics Anonymous: How do you keep from feeling overwhelmed by all the myriad things you’re beeminding?
I’m going to repeat my advice buried in a previous blog post, which is actually to beemind less. Not necessarily fewer things, but beemind everything less so. When you’re first starting I recommend that you pick one thing (or a handful, maybe 5 at most) that you’re blatantly, egregiously akratic about and focus on it. That may also be good advice for veterans who are feeling overwhelmed. Dial down all but a handful of goals so they’re no-brainers, put them below the fold in your gallery, or even archive them.
“Beemind less… Beeminder is the nuclear option.”
Not everyone views it this way but to me Beeminder is the nuclear option. Try every other lifehack in the book to get yourself to do what you want to do. Establish habits, set up environmental triggers, success spirals, social support, you name it. Beemind everything as well, but whenever possible find ways to keep that sword of Damocles securely tethered to the ceiling. Think of Beeminder as your insurance policy against falling below a minimum awesomeness threshold.
More and more people are excited to beemind every aspect of their lives (like this person or this person or this person or this person) and we’re obviously beside ourselves about that. But one of the above people is the one who brought up the topic of feeling overwhelmed by beeminding so much.
In my experience, you can beemind myriad things at once without it feeling overwhelming as long as you have other ways besides Beeminder’s looming sting to keep you on the good side of your yellow brick roads. Beeminder will feel overwhelming when your expectations for yourself are out of whack with reality. That’s your cue to scale back.
UPDATE 2014-07-22: Related reading on Inconsistent Universe.