Saturday, July 29, 2017

Book Report- The Power of Habit

General Overview: 
The Power of Habit was a great book by Charles Duhigg that was able to keep my attention throughout the whole time I was reading it. The book is broken into three categories that go over various reasons behind our habits and how we can properly replace habits with more positive ones. The author gives easy instruction and reasons why we have habits that we just cannot figure out on our own.

After purchasing this book, I thought I would just leave it somewhere on a shelf in my apartment but I have actually loaned it out to a friend with the hopes that they gain something useful aid and knowledge from the messages inside the book.
Favorite part of the book

    My favorite part of the book came from the second lesson. The author tells us that we can change our habits by substituting just one part of the routine. The trick is to switch the routine but keep everything else intact.  It seems simple, but in our hectic lives we often try to change everything at once but in reality, we only need to make minor changes that will snowball into bigger changes if we feel the need to continue to change our habits. A perfect example that was given in the book was “trying to get off caffeine? Just switch to Decaf”. It can be that easy, but when we are trying to change our behavior we often think too broad and try changing too much too quickly.
In our food slide, we learn people tend to crave fat food and have a preference to food that is not always healthy for us. Charles Duhigg explains that with willpower you can change any habit even the ones that seem impossible. To change our preference will take time but Charles explains there are three ways to strengthen our willpower.

 Step one: Do something that requires a lot of discipline. If you always have a soda with your meals a good first step is to cut back and only have a water with your meals.
Step two: Plan ahead for worst case scenarios. If you know you are stressed out from work and often go home to binge eat unhealthy snacks try stopping somewhere to pick up fruits as an alternative.
Step three: Preserve your autonomy. If you take away your autonomy, your willpower will suffer as a result.

Overall this book helped me understand why we have habits and ways we can stop the negative ones.  I look forward to applying some of the knowledge I have gained in my every day life. Hopefully after this I can start to kick my chips and dip every night habit!


  1. I am kind of upset that I opted for another book choice. This seems like a good one that would have helped me to motivate myself to have better study habits. I just find that I can't break these habits. I recently began getting up early in the morning around 6am. I figured since I usually can't fall back to sleep, I should try to do homework. I found that it is much more rewarding to do this instead of waiting later in the day when I'm hungry and tired because then it seems like the day goes by much faster. I will consider reading this book to see what else it has to offer. Great post!

  2. I was the same way for my first couple of semesters. Now I wake up at 6 and workout then immediately do my homework. Getting done everything makes the rest of my day go so much smoother.

  3. Hey Sean, I have to agree. I think making habits is key to a successful life.

  4. Hey Sean, thanks for the post. This book sounds pretty interesting, especially the way that the author seems to detail infallible ways to slightly adjust the daily habits of your life. This author appears to be onto a promising strategy, by not over complicating the process of change and to merely adapt to the processes of new habits. Thinking of change this way seems to make different habits/ways of living a breeze, rather than a drawn out process that you have to psych yourself up to get started.