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  • Writer's pictureGodfrey Heron

ChatGPT's Custom Instructions: Your Personalized AI Assistant!

Ever wished you had a personal assistant that could understand your unique needs and preferences? Well, buckle up, because with OpenAI's ChatGPT's custom instructions feature, that's exactly what you're getting!

What are Custom Instructions?

Think of custom instructions as a way to give ChatGPT a nudge in the right direction. You're essentially saying, "Hey, ChatGPT, I want you to respond in this particular style or follow these specific guidelines." It's like giving your AI assistant a personality makeover!

How to Use Custom Instructions

Using custom instructions is easy. All you have to do is include your instructions at the start of your conversation with ChatGPT. Here's an example:

You may write before your main prompt, "You are a helpful assistant." In this example, the prompt instructs ChatGPT to act as a "helpful assistant". This sets the tone for the conversation and guides how the model will respond.

Further Examples of Custom Instructions

The beauty of custom instructions is that they can be as broad or as specific as you like. Here are a few examples:

Setting the tone: You can instruct ChatGPT to respond in a particular style or tone. For example, you could say, "You are an assistant that speaks like Shakespeare", then, ask it to write a greeting. It will respond with something like, "Good morrow to thee, user! How may I assist thee on this fine day?"

Guiding the content: You can guide the type of content the model generates. For instance, you could instruct, "You are an assistant that provides scientific explanations." Ask it why the sky is blue, and it'll give you a detailed, scientific explanation about the coloration of the sky.

Role-playing: You can even have ChatGPT role-play! Tell it, "You are Sherlock Holmes," and then ask it to solve a mystery. You'll be amazed at the detective story it weaves!

Tips and Tricks

While custom instructions are really cool, there are a few things to keep in mind:

Be clear and explicit: The more specific your instructions, the better ChatGPT can meet your expectations.

Experiment: Feel free to try different instructions and see how the model responds. It's all part of the fun!

Remember the limits: While ChatGPT is a powerful model, it's not perfect. It might not always understand or follow the instructions as you intended. But don't worry, it's getting better all the time!

So, there you have it! A quick and easy guide to using ChatGPT's custom instructions feature. Now, go ahead and give your AI assistant a personality makeover!


ChatGPT has streamlined the custom instructions feature for ChatGPT plus users, which will save your custom instruction so you won’t have to type it in each time you access ChatGPT.

The process is as follows:

1. Click on the 3 horizontal dots, beside your username, at the lower left hand corner of the ChatGPT main window.

2. Click on, “Settings & Beta”

3. Click on, “Beta features”, and then slide the, “Custom Instructions”, slider to the right, then click on the X at the top right hand of the Settings window to close.

4. Click on the 3 horizontal dots again and select, “Custom instructions”

5. Enter your instructions in the text boxes provided. You do not need to enter into both text boxes. For example, you may just enter the following in the lower textbox, “write your responses as if you are an assistant that speaks like Shakesphere”. Remember, you can clear the instructions at any time. Feel free to experiment to find out what works best for you.

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