The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg

This book has been on my wish list for a while now. Everywhere I looked, it seemed like this book was on some must-read list, but I kept putting off buying this book for one simple reason: it seemed too simple. How could someone write a book on habits for 300 pages? Will the premise merely be formulaic? To be successful you must create good habits and destroy bad habits, do I really need a whole book for that?

Well, I finally picked up this book and I was totally, completely, and utterly wrong. This book was amazing. It was incredibly interesting and flawlessly written. I am ashamed that I did not read this book earlier. Perhaps I need to stop this habit of judging books by their cover.

Purely stated, habits control our lives. The majority of the things we do are out of habit and not decision making. Today, I will eat lunch at noon, not because I am hungry but because it is noon. I will crave coffee this afternoon because it is part of my routine. Our brains are pretty lazy, and they will do anything to work less.

The author takes us through the inner workings of habits on three different levels: individual, organizational, and social. To make a change in your life, in your organization, or in society as a whole, you need to change the habits. Some of the greatest advertisements of all time understand that changing habits are the recipe for success.

In addition to learning about habit forming, I also learned that shampoo and toothpaste do not need to foam to function. Foaming action has been included to give us the feeling cleanliness which gives you a mental reward which is imperative for habit forming. Incredible.

I highly recommend this book to anyone.

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