The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business
Is it odd that the term “habit” is usually used in the negative? As in, “Ooh, yeah, that’s a bad habit of his.”
If you’re familiar with my work, ahem, habits, you might know that I’ve been writing for 1,600 plus days. In a row. Today is day, let me check, 1,644. The difference between Charles Duhigg and me is:
- I just do it.
- He studied it, researched it and has the science to back it all up.
It was refreshing and enlightening for me to read about the neuroscience and case studies that prove what I have been doing: changing my habits and changing my life.
“Once you understand that habits can change, you have the freedom — and the responsibility — to remake them. Once you understand that habits can be rebuilt, the power becomes easier to grasp, and the only option left is to get to work.” — Charles Duhigg in The Power of Habit
One part of the book I really enjoyed was how to change habits. As far as I understood it, an old habit has to be replaced by a new habit. In other words, you can’t just stop smoking, but you need to replace smoking with something else. It takes time for your body and mind to get with the (new) program and adjust–and change.
The case studies and stories he tells throughout the book give us a real life look into how change truly works and how it affects people’s lives. Again for me, it was reassurance that I’m “doing the right thing” by keeping the consistency. For me, lots of the book was “reading the manual” on what I was already doing and experiencing. I especially like how the stories he uses are varied. Not just how someone stopped smoking or got into shape, but how habits changed corporate cultures and sold products.
You’ll probably need to be someone who wants to improve your life to enjoy this book. But if you are, it’s an excellent manual for change.