The Power of Habit

Why We Do What We do in Life and Business

Groundbreaking new research shows that by grabbing hold of the three-step “loop” all habits form in our brains–cue, routine, reward–we can change them, giving us the power to take control over our lives.
 
“We are what we repeatedly do,” said Aristotle. “Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” On the most basic level, a habit is a simple neurological loop: there is a cue (my mouth feels gross), a routine (hello, Crest), and a reward (ahhh, minty fresh). Understanding this loop is the key to exercising regularly or becoming more productive at work or tapping into reserves of creativity. Marketers, too, are learning how to exploit these loops to boost sales; CEOs and coaches are using them to change how employees work and athletes compete. As this book shows, tweaking even one habit, as long as it’s the right one, can have staggering effects.
 
In The Power of Habit, award-winning New York Times business reporter Charles Duhigg takes readers inside labs where brain scans record habits as they flourish and die; classrooms in which students learn to boost their willpower; and boardrooms where executives dream up products that tug on our deepest habitual urges. Full of compelling narratives that will appeal to fans of Michael Lewis, Jonah Lehrer, and Chip and Dan Heath, The Power of Habit contains an exhilarating argument: our most basic actions are not the product of well-considered decision making, but of habits we often do not realize exist. By harnessing this new science, we can transform our lives.

Reviews

Amazon.com - Best 100 Books of 2012
Amazon.ca - Best 100 Books of 2012

The Power of Habit is an enjoyable book, and readers will find useful advice about how to change at least some of their bad habits — even if they want to keep their salt.”
The New York Times (editor’s choice)
 
“Reading the quirky anecdotes and the whizbang science of it all becomes habit-forming in itself. Cue: see cover. Routine: read book. Reward: Fully comprehend the art of manipulation.”
Bloomberg Businessweek

“[A]bsolutely fascinating … Really juicy, fascinating, sometimes confounding stuff here.”
Wired
 
“Fascinating.”
The Wall Street Journal
 
“Duhigg has a knack for distilling laboratory findings into accessible language… . The Power of Habit is a fascinating read.”
The Daily Beast

“Duhigg makes everything accessible and useable for habit-makers and habit-breakers alike. Much like a handful of potato chips, in fact, this book is hard to resist.”
—The Nashville Ledger

The Power of Habit is a good and educational read… . Duhigg doesn’t preach, rather he invites you to learn—a much better approach.”
—Fortune
 
“Duhigg’s writing is easy to consume and is sure to make you laugh. You’ll forget that this non-fiction book has as many stats as your college psych textbook.”
—Huffington Post

“With penetrating intelligence and an ability to distill vast amounts of information into engrossing narratives, Charles brings to life a whole new understanding of human nature and its potential for transformation.”
—MarketWatch