The Role of habit in daily life.
The summary breaks down into two parts. The first part focuses on how to create a new habit. And the second part focuses on how to replace an old habit with new ones.
The Purpose of habit is to automate the behavior.
Without habits, your brain would shut down by figuring out the little details of everyday life. That’s why. A person with damage basal ganglia become mentally paralyzed. Because he has troubled to-do the basic activities of day-to-day life.
Your habit decides your routine.
It decides what you do when you wake up the next morning.
Either you will drink a glass of water first or check your phone. All your life, you will think each day you will wake up and begin to make choices. But, you are not making choices.
These are habits that ingrain in your brain. Once you understand this, you can use the habit loop to create a new habit and replace the old ones.
Habit allows you to stop making little choices like how much to eat, what to focus on, and when you go to the office. So you can save the mental energy to produce something productive.
But conserving mental energy is tricky. Because if your brain power down at the wrong moment. You would fail to notice something important. Basal ganglia have created an authentic system to decide when to automate the habits.
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The process of habit formation occurs in three steps:
First, a cue that tells your brain to go into an automatic mode and decide which habit to use.
Then, the second step is routine ( the path you follow ) which can be physical, mental, and emotional.
And the last step is reward. Reward tells the brain that the particular loop is worth remembering.
Formula: Clue > Routine > Reward
Here is a catch.
Cues to trigger habits can be anything: a candy bar, a time of day, a certain emotion, a sequence of thoughts. Once you catch the cue you will automatically follow a routine.
Routine can be simple as well as complex.
Once you associate the cue with a certain reward. A subconscious craving will occur in your brain.
Example: People love smoking because it provides a burst of stimulation (subconscious craving).
The dark side of habit is, your brain cannot tell the difference between good and bad habits.
Moreover, habits never disappear. So if you have a bad habit. It always hiding there waiting for the right cue to execute the behavior.
Pattern to replace old habit with new one.
But if you want to change your old behavior with the new one.
You need to focus on the second part of the habit loop Routine.
Because it is easy to convenience someone to adopt a new behavior if a cue and reward were the same.
To change any habit you need to follow the same cue and reward but insert a new routine.
At Last: Here are my favorite Quotes from this book.
- Change might not be fast and it isn’t always easy. But with time and effort, almost any habit can be reshaped. ― Charles Duhigg.
- Champions don’t do extraordinary things. They do ordinary things, but they do them without thinking, too fast for the other team to react. They follow the habits they’ve learned. ― Charles Duhigg.
- Willpower isn’t just a skill. It’s a muscle, like the muscles in your arms or legs, and it gets tired as it works harder, so there’s less power left over for other things. ― Charles Duhigg.
- If you believe you can change – if you make it a habit – the change becomes real. ― Charles Duhigg.
- If you want to do something that requires willpower—like going for a run after work—you have to conserve your willpower muscle during the day. ― Charles Duhigg.
I recommend the book to the person seeking to get rid of bad habits. In this, Duhigg breaks down the science behind habit formation. And, also define how the brain plays tricks and create excuses. But once you implement the tricks in your daily life. You’ll begin to see the difference.
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Above article is the exact version of the book “The Power of Habit” written by Charles Duhigg.