Zhifei Ge's Reviews > The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business

The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg
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's review
Jun 28, 2012

it was amazing
bookshelves: psychology, neurology

Before I opened this book, I thought it would be another book just like those on positive psychology, which are spiritual. It turns out I was wrong. The book is anything but spiritual. The book, The Power of Habit, starts by explaining what is habit from the aspect of neurology. The habits are neurological cycles in our brain. These cycles control our behavior when necessary inputs are there. Neurologically, those cycles won't disappear. They can only be suppressed. Thus, behaviorally, we should try to replace old and bad habits with new ones, rather than eradicate them.
Neurological inferences about replacement of habits are followed by topics on what are the best chances for successful replacement of habits. Since our old habits won't disappear, chances are that our habit changes are just on the surface and when emergency arises, we end up with old habits. Therefore, in order to really eradicate old habits, we must be plain with ourselves, really understand motives of our behaviors, and finally have belief in our new habits. I think the topics on belief are probably the only part of the book that is more spiritual than scientific.
The last parts of the book are only organizational habits and societal habits. All these topics are interesting to me, especially when habits are intertwined with morality. The stories about the similarity between a women addicted to gambling and a sleep walker are fantastic and inspiring for us to reconsider the responsibility in a case when old and bad habits are involved.
Overall, this book is among the best books on psychology I've read.
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Reading Progress

Started Reading
June 28, 2012 – Shelved
June 28, 2012 – Shelved as: psychology
June 28, 2012 – Shelved as: neurology
June 28, 2012 – Finished Reading

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