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The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business | [Charles Duhigg]

The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business

At its core, The Power of Habit contains an exhilarating argument: The key to exercising regularly, losing weight, raising exceptional children, becoming more productive, building revolutionary companies and social movements, and achieving success is understanding how habits work. Habits aren’t destiny. As Charles Duhigg shows, by harnessing this new science, we can transform our businesses, our communities, and our lives.
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Audible Editor Reviews

Why we think it's Essential - Change is hard, or is it? In The Power of Habit, New York Times reporter Charles Duhigg examines just how people and institutions undergo transformation: by changing habits. Narrator Mike Chamberlain (Moonwalking with Einstein) brings just the right mix of objectivity and conviction for a fascinating, life-changing look on how to change. —Diana M.

Publisher's Summary

A young woman walks into a laboratory. Over the past two years, she has transformed almost every aspect of her life. She has quit smoking, run a marathon, and been promoted at work. The patterns inside her brain, neurologists discover, have fundamentally changed.

Marketers at Procter & Gamble study videos of people making their beds. They are desperately trying to figure out how to sell a new product called Febreze, on track to be one of the biggest flops in company history. Suddenly, one of them detects a nearly imperceptible pattern - and with a slight shift in advertising, Febreze goes on to earn a billion dollars a year.

An untested CEO takes over one of the largest companies in America. His first order of business is attacking a single pattern among his employees - how they approach worker safety - and soon the firm, Alcoa, becomes the top performer in the Dow Jones.

What do all these people have in common? They achieved success by focusing on the patterns that shape every aspect of our lives. They succeeded by transforming habits.

In The Power of Habit, award-winning New York Times business reporter Charles Duhigg takes us to the thrilling edge of scientific discoveries that explain why habits exist and how they can be changed. With penetrating intelligence and an ability to distill vast amounts of information into engrossing narratives, Duhigg brings to life a whole new understanding of human nature and its potential for transformation.

Along the way, we learn why some people and companies struggle to change, despite years of trying, while others seem to remake themselves overnight. We visit laboratories where neuroscientists explore how habits work and where, exactly, they reside in our brains. We discover how the right habits were crucial to the success of Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps, Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz, and civil-rights hero Martin Luther King, Jr. We go inside Procter & Gamble, Target superstores, Rick Warren’s Saddleback Church, NFL locker rooms, and the nation’s largest hospitals, and see how implementing so-called keystone habits can earn billions and mean the difference between failure and success, life and death.

At its core, The Power of Habit contains an exhilarating argument: The key to exercising regularly, losing weight, raising exceptional children, becoming more productive, building revolutionary companies and social movements, and achieving success is understanding how habits work.

Habits aren’t destiny. As Charles Duhigg shows, by harnessing this new science, we can transform our businesses, our communities, and our lives.

©2012 Charles Duhigg (P)2012 Random House, Inc.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (7869 )
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Performance
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  •  
    jose Hernandez 04-27-14
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    3
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    Story
    "Very Informative"
    What made the experience of listening to The Power of Habit the most enjoyable?

    I learned something I could use in everyday life.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    No particular character, mostly the collection of studies with various individuals.


    What about Mike Chamberlain’s performance did you like?

    How it was explained, with a story, a breakdown, and how it was changed.


    What did you learn from The Power of Habit that you would use in your daily life?

    How my habits hinder your utmost potential in life. That is, if you can find the habit and change it.


    Any additional comments?

    I would recommend this book to anyone that wants something in life but has a hard time finding a way to get it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    John J. Ryan Colorado Springs, CO 04-27-14
    John J. Ryan Colorado Springs, CO 04-27-14
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    7
    4
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    Performance
    Story
    "Starts strong and fizzles"
    What disappointed you about The Power of Habit?

    It got really boring and forced. Half of the examples have political agenda.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Charles Duhigg again?

    probably not.


    Did the narration match the pace of the story?

    Narration was fine.


    What character would you cut from The Power of Habit?

    About half of the content.


    Any additional comments?

    Could have been replaced with a book half as long.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mary 04-25-14
    Mary 04-25-14 Member Since 2014
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    4
    3
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    Performance
    Story
    "yaaaaaaaawn"
    What disappointed you about The Power of Habit?

    Most boring book ever.


    What could Charles Duhigg have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    He just rambles on and on about useless examples of habits.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mary Chapel Hill, NC, United States 04-19-14
    Mary Chapel Hill, NC, United States 04-19-14 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
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    "Very effective book"
    What made the experience of listening to The Power of Habit the most enjoyable?

    I'm generally not into self-help books but 2 friends recommended this. I too recommend it. While it has numerous case studies, they are interesting and to the point. They aren't just filler. The advice is sound and the book actually motivated me to make some changes in my life. Highly recommend.


    What did you like best about this story?

    It offers useful advice with examples that back up the advice. It enabled me to gain control of some situations that I had allowed to lead me.


    What does Mike Chamberlain bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    I don't know since I didn't read the book.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    It motivated me to make some changes that needed to happen. The book gave evidence for what we do and why we do it so it was easier to implement the advice. Wish I'd read something like this years ago.


    Any additional comments?

    If you want to get control of your life, read this book, or rather listen to it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    romantic 04-17-14
    romantic 04-17-14
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    12
    2
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "too much of performance can ruin a good book"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes, but reading the book, not listening to this performance.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    The prologue is wonderfully written; it compels to read the book


    How could the performance have been better?

    It is not a novel or adventure; please do not change your voice during dialogue/monologue; Please do not become too emotional describing an emergency situation. I want this book to be a teaching device. If I need emotions, I'll read novels.


    Any additional comments?

    Do you mind changing this list of questions to a simple: what do you think about the book; what do you think about the performance. The last question, "what did you learn from ..." too schoolish.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gil Michelini Indianapolis 04-07-14
    Gil Michelini Indianapolis 04-07-14

    Gil

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Worthy of 5 Stars!"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    GREAT insight into what drives each of us. The more I think about habits, the more I see how I can apply the power of controlling may habits to change my life. This can also better help me understand others.

    Recommend this book for anyone who wants to better understand themselves or other people.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ely Rye, NY, United States 03-29-14
    Ely Rye, NY, United States 03-29-14 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Boring"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    Not really, the points are good but the stories that lead to the ultimate useful information are way too long and boring, it makes your mind drift away so often. I fell that I was wasting time listening to so much padding.


    What do you think your next listen will be?

    Something more direct, something for busy people. Quick and useful


    What do you think the narrator could have done better?

    Shorten up the whole stories, just get to the point


    If this book were a movie would you go see it?

    No, I'll fall sleep


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Omtomyheart 03-23-14
    Omtomyheart 03-23-14 Member Since 2014

    A mother, a wife, part-time professional trying to fit it all in...

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "I had no idea how much science was involved!"

    this was a fascinating book! There is ALOT of technical and scientific information to get through and to understand, in order for you to really comprehend how a habit is formed and maintained. It encompasses historical evidence, psychology, and practical guidelines on how to change an existing habit. I believe that this book makes you be more mindful of your habit so that you can effectively change habits or use habits to your advantage. What a great foundation to learn, especially when embarking on new endeavors.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    kedar United States 03-17-14
    kedar United States 03-17-14
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    2
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    Story
    "Two Words "Game Changer""
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes. This book delivers insight, in depth understanding and real practical info.... If only bought one book this one would be worth a whole year subscription to Audible. Real Talk! :0)


    What did you like best about this story?

    I went from technical to laymen discussions uniformly. This made it a practical and applicable source of knowlege.


    What does Mike Chamberlain bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    His narration was good... He applied animation to each scenario and topic. was not boring at all.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    The Game and how to play it....


    Any additional comments?

    Let's just say: I Bought the book also.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alexandra 03-16-14
    Alexandra 03-16-14 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Fascinating"

    You can tell a journalist, not a scientist, wrote this page-turner. Compared to other psychology books, the stories are both memorable and emotionally compelling. They're written like an article you'd get sucked into and remember years later. I can verify that, having listened to this book well over a year ago, and re-listening to it now, I not only remembered each story in its details but was excited when I heard it come on. Although at times, this distracts from the main point of the story, on the whole it makes a 10 hour audiobook go by much faster. (Although I still could have wished for a little shorter). I especially appreciated the Appendix, which describes how to apply the learnings of the book to your own life. The only other suggestions I'd have to improve this book would be to bullet point the learnings at the end of each chapter, and to get the narrator to chill out a little bit. He got into the voice acting a little too much when portraying certain protagonists.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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