Monday, August 7, 2023

The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg Book Report


“The Power of Habit” by Charles Duhigg explains why habits exist, how they coexist in our lives, and how to change habits to create more successful careers and everyday lives. Habits help steer our decision making and actions and have a strong influence on the successes as well as mistakes we make in life. Duhigg uses vivid images and terminology to demonstrate how important habits are in our day to day lives, and how it is important to identify both negative and positive ones. A lot of the time, we do things during the day without thinking, and we don’t realize that those are habits that we have formed without realizing we even formed them. Duhigg points out that acknowledging the habits that we have created will give us the power to change those habits that we are unhappy with, and create new, healthy habits.

There are many parts of the book that I enjoyed, but I think my favorite part was learning about Duhigg’s “golden rule”. His golden rule explains that bad habits are very difficult to destroy. To change them, you must replace them with a new routine. This relates back to the beginning of the book that discusses "the habit loop", which is a three-step loop that contains a cue, routine, and reward. The cue is what activates the brain and reminds it to do something. The routine can be either physical, emotional, or mental. The reward is what you receive by performing the habit.  Every single habit follows this loop, whether they are good or bad habits. The book states, “This is how new habits are created: by putting together a cue, a routine, and a reward, and then cultivating a craving that drives the loop (pg. 49, paragraph 2)." For example, if someone is obsessed with food, seeing the said food forms a taste of the cake, pizza, or whatever they will be eating before they even touch it. Just the sight of the food will send a trigger to their brain which causes the cravings to happen. In this case, the golden rule really applies because any sort of habit can lead to an addiction, which is very hard to break. But if you follow the “golden rule” that Duhigg talks about, you can combat the bad habit and replace it with a positive routine. In this situation, the cue stays the same along with the reward, but the routine that connects the cue to the reward is changed.

In class, we learned about impulsivity and self-control, and how they affect our daily lives. To tie this into the book, both traits are habits themselves. When acting on impulse, a lot of the time we do so without thinking twice. Just like any other habit, impulsivity can have a negative impact on how we trek through life. Impulsive thoughts are one thing, but when you turn them into an action, the habit is then created and is hard to break. On the other hand, self-control is also a habit, but is more of a positive one. Self-control and impulsivity are opposites, but they both are habits that we form. Just like the book states, we choose whichever habits we decide to form, and by choosing these said habits, they will begin to shape our lives, whether negative or positive.

Linked below is a video discussing Duhigg’s book. The video discusses habits, specifically a bad habit, and why it is sometimes so hard to shake. This video does a great job broadly explaining the core of the book, providing examples that are easy to relate to.


I believe that this book is a great book that can be useful outside of the classroom. A lot of the time, we don’t realize that we are creating a habit. This book is an asset to just about anyone because it addresses an important topic that applies to everyone’s everyday life. We all have habits, whether good or bad, that we create throughout our lives. This book is a great tool that will help you understand the “why” of habits and help

us figure out why we create the habits we do, and how to readjust our habits to live the life we want to. We cannot fully succeed in life or accomplish what we want to accomplish without understanding how habits work. This is why this book is extremely important when wanting to improve your live and live it healthily.




No comments:

Post a Comment