Skip to main content

The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg

Its been long since I blogged about a book or read any book worth blogging. As it happened, a book club was formed in our office and nominations for your book were given and voted. As fate would have it the book I voted came on top and I was nominated as one of the facilitators to summarize the book for our office audience so they can dwell deeper it they like it. "The Power of Habit", I voted for this book in hopes that it would help me create the habit of waking up early and change my YouTube watching habit. Turned out to be a good choice, I enjoyed this book as much as I'd enjoy a well written fiction!

Summary:
Any Habit can be better understood when looked through The Habit loop: Cue > Routine > Reward. Cue triggers the habit, Routine is the action performed and Reward satisfies your craving . Habits automates our brain, so we need not concentrate on every aspect of a repetitive action : we are not thinking hard on the route to take, traffic, rules to follow on our daily commute to office.

Habit is relatively easy to form but cannot be eradicated, we'd always crave for the reward. The Golden rule is to keep the same Cue and Reward but change the Routine (action) : Most people smoke(routine) to relieve-stress (reward); meditation or exercise can be used as replacement routine as they also release stress buster hormones.

Some habits triggers chain reaction of changes and creates new habits and eventually snowballs into life changing experience, these kind of habits are termed "Keystone habits" : In an office with flexible office hours and tight deadline it will be hard to establish a good work life balance. But if working hours are mandated in office, employees will have to come on time. So they have to wake up early > more early morning fresh air > relatively traffic free ride > most energetic time period spent in office translates to productivity > leaving on time > more family time in evening  > better life style.

Knowing the habits can be changed is not enough and thus the author provides his personal formula to change a habit. (override routine)
1. Identify the routine you want to change : as it is readily visible
2. Experiment with rewards : do minor tweaks in reward to see if your craving is satisfied.
3. Isolate the cue : what is the cue that sets up routine in motion? mostly it will fall in any of the following five categories,
    a) Location : Office
    b) Time : 4:30 pm
    c) Emotional state : Bored
    d) Other people : When colleagues comes/leave office or bay or Skype
    e) Preceding (previous) action : Did stretches, Sent mail and so on
4. Step up plan that goes on to explain minute detail : Everyday I'll wake up at 6 am, for this I'll set three alarm clock away from my bed, I won't hit snooze, I will brush and drink water, wear my sneaker and go jogging for 30 minutes.

For the simplest idea of changing the routine instead attacking the whole habit and offering a memorable 4 step formula, I'm giving this book above 3.5 in spite of being sort of self-help book which I hate most.

Popular posts from this blog

Up and Close with Sudalai Madan: The Encounter

Night of 13th April all the preparations for the rituals were done in the temple, Sudalaimadam swamies idol was decorated with flowers and fruits and coconuts dedicated to the lord reached above his chest.My cousin Sudalai muthu, senior priest of the shrine reached home by late night got blessings of his father Late Shanmugam Sundaram and blessed the family members in 8x10 room dedicated for God, then started towards the temple. There peoples in huge number were waiting for the Sudalaimada swamy's arrival. Different rituals were offered by people to the Lord in order to get the blessings. As its is believed Sudaimada swamy, son Lord Siva used to consume meat in Kailash for this reason he is sent to earth were he can satisfy his earthy hunger there by not polluting Kailash.



Offering meat to Sudalaimadan is the most important and an watchful event in the festival. Many devotees offer their goat & pig so as to please the lord and get his blessings. That midnight Sudalaimada swamy …

why do people sweat more in chennai???

One of the famous ornament of chennai is its summer!. Everyone here would have at least once talked about its effect and the way they affected. People comes out with sweats flowing from the body is the usual scene of chennai noon. The sweat produced is not just due to the temperature of the region. It is in fact due to the high humidity of chennai.

To explain this lets see a fact, people in chennai sweats more than the people in delhi where the temperature is higher than the former.

This is because of chennai's location. Chennai is located near sea due to which sea water evaporation is high during summer which in turn increases the humidity (Amount of water vapour present in air).
Normally human blood temperature is about 35 deg Celsius. If the outside temperature is more than that, then our system tries to automatically cools down by releasing sweat from the body.

The sweat which is released cools the surrounding heat by converting into vapour thereby reducing the body temperature…

Puththu kovilum Putho tilesum, as they are built

Its grand Aadi season here in Tamil Nadu wherever you  go you'd be followed by awful music from no mercy speakers. Yes this is the first post dedicated for it. Hindu is not a religion but it's idealism,  a way to unite people, that's perfectly constructed by assuming separate task to every God, no single God worship. Hindus moved from nature worship to idol worship, but that doesn't mean that we don't have nature worship we have created a idol for them and countinued to worship them in different form.

Snake is a beautiful reptile, I have made friend with few too... (got time? search my blog to know what I mean). Our ancestor found the nature law, 'every living creature on earth is important for the ecosystem to be balance'. Maybe to make sure snakes are not killed fearing their venom they made them as God too! Not just idol snakes, they are worshiped as they are at their conquered(from rats and termite)nest or puthu.


Lets not concentrate if snake drinks milk …