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The Power of Habit: A Summary - Why We Do What We Do In Life and In Business
The Power of Habit is organized into three parts. Part one examines the source of individual habits, the neurology of habits, and methods of changing habits on a personal level. Part two examines the habits of successful companies and organizations and how leadership might conceptualize habit change at the institutional level. Part three investigates social habits, and in particular, the role they play in times of larger societal shifts.
A central thesis that Duhigg returns to throughout the book is that habits are central to our lives as individuals, institutions and larger social groups. If we have a better understanding of the mechanics of habit formation, then we can exercise more agency in affecting positive change on all of those levels. The work draws on scholarship from neurological and behavioral science, corporate research, and hundreds of interviews. In addition, the author draws heavily on stories of people and events to provide anecdotal support and cogent examples of his theories of habit and habit change.
Duhigg is a Pulitzer Prize winning journalist for The New York Times where he writes on business topics. He has a background in History from Yale University and an MBA from the Harvard Business School. In 2010, he won the Science in Society Journalism Award from the National Association for Science Writers.
Charles Duhigg puts the power of behavior change in the hands of the reader. The curtain is pulled back on the origin, structure, and purpose of the habits that keep us, our companies, and our society functioning smoothly.
Using examples from some of the most prodigious, profitable, and well-known institutions in the modern era, Duhigg explains our habits in an easy to digest and relatable format. How thoroughly we depend on our habits can be traced back to our evolution. Our habits are instincts that have evolved throughout time to dictate our relationships, our behaviors, and the way we do business. But understanding the nature of our habits is just the beginning. Once we know how our habits are built, we can work to modify them to our benefit. This behavioral empowerment is at the core of The Power of Habit.
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