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How to turn your chatbot into a life coach

Greetings! We are back with another edition On Tech: AIA pop-up newsletter that teaches you about artificial intelligence, how it works and how to use it.

Last week, I went to you How to turn AI into a personal shopper To accelerate product research. Let’s now ask AI to try something more ambitious: helping us set goals and organize our lives to achieve them.

It turns out that chatbots like ChatGPT and Bard are actually pretty good at these tasks. I’ll help you by prompting a chatbot to create an action plan and help you build new habits, including adding your goals to your calendar and to-do list.

First, choose a goal! It helps if there is a self-help book with relevant advice. For example, let’s say you want to run a marathon and you just read the book “Slow AF Run Club: The Ultimate Guide for Anyone Who Wants to Run.”

Now choose a chatbot. I will be using Open AI’s ChatGPT for this example Web browsing turned on in Settings, since the book is brand new. Then try this prompt, which I adapted promptheroA database of ChatGPT prompts that have helped people:

I want you to act as a life coach. I’ll provide some details about my current situation and goals, and it will be your job to come up with strategies that can help me make better decisions and reach those goals. This can include giving advice on a variety of topics, such as making plans to achieve success or dealing with difficult emotions. My first request is: This fall my goal is to run a marathon. Create a three-month plan using the principles from the book “Slow AF Run Club.”

ChatGPT can explain the book’s premise — that anyone, regardless of their body size and fitness status, can train at their own pace to become a runner — and put together a workout plan using the book’s principles. Could

For example, in the first month, the chatbot might recommend starting with four 30-minute walks a week to get you into the habit of physical activity. Then at 2 months, it would say to maintain that frequency but start incorporating jogging. In the third month, it would be said to focus on jogging and increase the total time of your sessions to 45 minutes.

The next step is to take these tips and turn them into habits. You can manually plug workouts into your calendar, but what’s the fun in that? On ChatGPT, calls are made using plug-in automation tools ZapierYou can connect the chatbot to your Google Calendar and ask it to automatically integrate these workout recommendations into your calendar for you.

(Currently only customers who pay $20 per month for ChatGPT Plus can use the plug-in. We explained how to do this last week’s newspaper,

Once you have connected Zapier to ChatGPT, go to Zapier Open AI Actions Menu And click on “Add New Action”. For Action, type “Google Calendar: Quick Add Event”. Follow the steps to connect your Google Calendar account and click “Enable Action”.

Once this is done, go back to ChatGPT. With the Zapier plug-in selected, re-enter the prompt asking the bot to be your life coach. Now, after the bot generates a workout plan, type “add each workout to my calendar.”

From there, the bot will look at the workout plan and automatically follow the workout plan’s directions to add each session to your calendar. When it’s time to increase your running duration, the calendar events will change to reflect that.

Pretty neat, but if you’re a person with a to-do list, it’s a pretty easy setup. Just tell your life coach that you are going to share your to-do list regularly and you want him/her to add these workouts to your to-do list as per the proposed schedule.

For example, I told my life coach that this week I would have to get the car tires changed at Costco, contact the health insurance company for a claim, write the copy for this week’s newsletter, buy broccoli, and do business with the companies. Must schedule a phone call with you. It automatically spreads these tasks over the course of a week and tackles 30-minute walks.

Try using these steps for any goal you have in life – such as saving money to buy a house, or preparing yourself to get a promotion at work. A little automation can turn vague advice into a more practical plan.

After asking about a running plan, I told my life coach that I had put on a lot of weight and was out of shape after the pandemic. The chatbot reminded me that, based on the book’s principles, the goal is to run a marathon, not lose weight, and to overcome shame and find joy in the process of running. It encouraged me to join a community of runners, whether in real life or online in communities like Reddit or Strava. It sounded like good advice.

What will happen next?

Next week, we’ll look at how students can take advantage of AI to study (not cheat).

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