The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg


Charles Duhigg

  Habit, Personal Development, Personal Growth,Self Development

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How to change what you do: The process

Habit loop

1. Cues

A trigger that drives your brain into automatic mode and which habit to apply. These cues can be anything. Such as visual, audible, emotional, etc.

2. Routines

An action that is repetitive in nature. This can be physical, mental, or emotional.

3. Rewards

The gratification your brain gets from completing the routine. This allows it to find a loop worth retaining for the future. Rewards can be physical and emotional.

Habits don't really die. They’re embedded into the structures of our brain.


Keystone habits

There some habits that matter more than others in shaping our lives or businesses. These keystone habits determine how people work, eat, play, live, spend, and communicate. These habits have the ability to influence other existing habits as well.


The Golden Rule of habit change

Habits cannot be erased. Instead, it must be substituted.

According to this rule, you must:

1. Use the same old cue

2. Offer the same reward

3. Change the routine


Changing your habits

First and foremost, identify the components of your habit loops. From there, follow these four steps:


1. Identify the routine

Routine is the most explicit component of a habit. It’s the behaviour you want to change. Once identified, isolate the cues, and the reward, since the routine embodies the two.

2. Experiment with rewards

Find out which cravings stimulate specific habits. Experiment with different rewards. This will take weeks, or months even.

When you sense the desire to start the routine, modify it so that it offers a different reward. This will determine which craving is fueling your routine.

3. Isolate the cue

Most cues belong to one of 5 categories:

  1. Location
  2. Time
  3. Emotional state
  4. Other people
  5. Immediately preceding action

When experiencing an intense urge for a habit, try observing these five things at that moment.

4. Have a plan

When you see *cue*, do *routine* to get *reward*.

Break the loop by switching it up. Make a plan.

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