Monday, August 7, 2017

Book Report - The Power Of Habit by Charles Duhigg

General Overview

The book I chose for my report was The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business by Charles Duhigg. This book discusses habits and the impact habits have on our daily lives, making a compelling argument about the importance of habits. The author delves into scientific studies and personal anecdotes centered around habits, their impact on our lives, and how we can rewire ourselves to have better habits. The book is divided into helpful chapters about habits - important habits, willpower, successful habits employed by organizations, habits in advertising and society, and many more. The author keeps the book engaging by using scientific jargon in an understandable way, but also using anecdotes and examples that are interesting to read.

The book was very enjoyable and not at all a boring or difficult read; it kept me engrossed from the first page and I learned a lot. I am actually grateful at having read the book because it is chock full of information that is relevant and helpful to everybody; this book has universal appeal because it is about something that all of us as humans do and could improve on.

Image result for the power of habit

Favorite Part

There were many parts in the book that I enjoyed, as there were many insightful tips in the book, but my favorite chapter would have to be the one on keep the cue, provide the same reward, insert a new routine. In this part one example really resonated with me and stood out to me. One example was given of a girl that bit her nails; but it was chronic and serious to the point that her nails would bleed or her skin would have scabs on it. Her fingers would tingle, an indication of nerve injury. I can relate to this because I used to bite my nails a lot when I was in high school.

Mine would bleed too and I would be in pain because they would be so short and injured. I knew it was wrong and painful but would continue to do it anyway.  The girls therapist gave her tips to stop and made her write down when she would do it. The girl then replaced her nail biting with something else and reward herself for not biting them, and soon her habit was gone. I realized that I changed my habit similarly; I realized that I would bite my nails as nervous habit and once I got treatment for my generalized anxiety disorder I no longer felt as nervous and stopped biting my nails.

I related this part to what we had learned in class in the lecture slides about rewards. I realized that I took away my negative behavior by also replacing it with a positive one; getting therapy and rewarding myself for getting over my nail biting habit by eating a food I liked to reinforce the good behavior.


I have always wanted to learn astrology and how to read birth charts. Birth charts are charts that show all of your astrological placements and how they affect your personality. To a lot of people, astrology seems fake and pointless, but to me it is a lot of fun and even if you don’t take it seriously, it can be enjoyable and even helpful in helping you to realize things about yourself. This year, 2017, I started to take learning to read birth charts more seriously and actually put in practice. Instead of just thinking I would do it, I started to watch videos, read books, and gather more information online.

By changing my habit of thinking and waiting to actually doing, I changed my habit of being intimidated by learning something new.  I read a lot on the signs, what certain placements meant, and how to enhance possible unfavorable aspects of yourself according to the birth chart. I have gotten much better, and while I am not an expert I can still read a person’s chart pretty well and have received positive feedback from people that say what I told them resonated with them or was true. Once again I realize that astrology is not a legit science or accepted by the scientific community, but it is fun and interesting to learn about to me. It has also helped me to learn about a whole new concept and world that was once intimidating and foreign to me.

(Not my picture/art - just found interesting and it is of a birth chart)

Here is also a link to a website that you input your time, place, and date of birth and it will give you your birth chart. There is also some interpretations of the results as well. In case you were curious.


I believe that this book is very helpful and could definitely help solve a real world problem or address a current issue. Since the book is about habits, changing our habits and being more productive, and recognizing bad habits, it is relatable and can be applied to anybody. A real world problem today affecting people is hunger; many people don’t have access to food or are malnourished. If we changed our habits and became more mindful of our spending, we could afford to donate to organizations that aim to eradicate world hunger. A current issue affecting college students in the US that I discussed in my discussion post was how college students don’t get enough sleep.

I believe it is because of bad habits like drinking and partying too much and eating unhealthy foods and also excess usage of cellphones during bedtime. By changing these negative habits, college students could improve their poor sleep. The book has good ideas about habits and oftentimes our habits have real world consequences.

Final Thoughts

I really enjoyed this book and felt I learned a lot. I can see why it has so many rave reviews as it is a great self help book. It is very relatable and a lot of people can benefit from it. I learned some good tips on how to turn bad habits into good ones and get into the core reason of habits I do and why I do them. This book is one I will turn to from time to time in order to make sure I ingrain the lessons from it into my life. I highly recommend this book and find it engaging and beneficial.

1 comment:

  1. Hey Samra,

    Loved your post. I am glad you learned so much in the book. I've heard notable things about it.