Baby Got Bonus: Beeminding Your Way to Awesome
by Grayson Bray Morris
This essay was first published in January 2015 on this site. Its permalink is here.
Way back in November of 2014, I discovered a productivity tool that would turn out to actually work for me. And more than just work: it’s been amazing. It’s helping me achieve goals I’ve had for decades—goals I always abandoned, time after time after time, when the first flush of enthusiasm waned. Here’s a major part of the reason why.
Feeling All Accomplished, All the Time
If you set up your Beeminder messaging right, it lets you focus on the goals that need some love today. So although I’ve got nearly two dozen goals set up, there are generally only a handful that are close to derailing on any given day, and Beeminder tells me what they are. It takes off a lot of the stress of prioritizing what to do, keeps my to-do list short and sweet, and once I do those few things, I feel like I’m meeting all my goals, because they’re all above that dotted line whether I worked on them or not.
Let me repeat that. I feel like I’m meeting all my goals, whether I worked on them today or not.
Let’s say my goal is to write an average of 250 words a day. Following my usual strategy, if I miss any days I start to feel like a slacker—even if I wrote lots on other days:
But Beeminder puts this cumulative data in unambiguous visual terms that reflect the success I’m actually having. As a result, the same objective behavior makes me feel accomplished instead of lazy:
Since the real goal is to get words written, Beeminder tracking is a much more productive strategy.