The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg

sandordargo profile image Sandor Dargo Originally published at sandordargo.com ・2 min read

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Books on habits can be extremely popular as we all, of course, want to create ones that can help us in our life. They help is both in our careers and in our everyday lives. Though maybe it's easier to see that in our professional path. That's why The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People can be so influencing. Corporations organize training around that book and hand out copies to their employees.

The Power of Habit is not about successful habits, it's simply about habits.

It analysis the core of habits. If you read this book you'll learn how a habit works in your brain and what do you need to do in order to create a new one and what will not help to form a habit.

You might remember my talk on Zuckerberg's gray T-Shirt and coding guidelines. I emphasized the importance of decisions already made for you versus willpower. While I advocated for rules already set and automation to free your willpower so that you can focus it on more important matters, habits also produce similar results.

When a repeated activity becomes a habit you don't waste any willpower on continue doing it. Once your brain identifies the cue, the automated pattern will kick-in and you'll perform it without thinking in order to just to get the reward your brain used to.

Cue Routine Reward cycle from The Power Of Habit

Duhigg's book can help you identify which are the habits that matter the most in your life, the so-called keystone habits and how to form them. But it goes beyond because there are not only individual habits. Families, companies, and societies also have them. How habits helped the Saddleback Church or the Montgomery bus boycott to succeed? You can learn from the book.

While courts might say that in certain cases we are not responsible for horrible acts. They might say that we cannot be responsible for acts that came out of habit, without being aware of what we were doing, don't forget it is your sole responsibility to form good habits.

Which habit of yours are you going to change?

Happy reading!

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Sandor Dargo


Happy father. Blogger. Developer. Amateur of graph databases.


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When a repeated activity becomes a habit you don't waste any willpower on continue doing it

I keep on saying this to my wife and kids ( in relation to waking up early, exercise regularly, eat vegetables, clean their desks) so many times, it has become a bad habit of mine... :-)

nice post ( and talk ) btw


Thanks for your words!

Is that a bad habit?! :) Veggies are good. The keystone habit we started with my wife around 8 years ago was to reduce our lunch portions (we used to bring it ourselves) and to bring lots of fruits for the hours in between. The best thing that happened to our diet!


Yes, I love this book! My keystone habit is waking up early, everything else falls into place if I can do that.


I totally agree with you. I've just extended early wake-ups to the weekends. How do you use your first hours?


Studying Japanese, and then a bit of time spent programming (learning things/working on side projects).