• The Power of Habit

  • Why We Do What We Do, and How to Change
  • By: Charles Duhigg
  • Narrated by: Mike Chamberlain
  • Length: 10 hrs and 53 mins
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars (892 ratings)

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The Power of Habit  By  cover art

The Power of Habit

By: Charles Duhigg
Narrated by: Mike Chamberlain
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Publisher's summary

Brought to you by Penguin.

There's never been a better time to set new habits. This book will change your life.

Why do we do develop habits? And how can we change them?

We can always change. In The Power of Habit, award-winning New York Times business reporter Charles Duhigg translates cutting-edge behavioural science into practical self-improvement action, distilling advanced neuroscience into fascinating narratives of transformation.

Why can some people and companies change overnight and some stay stuck in their old ruts? The answer lies deep in the human brain, and The Power of Habits reveals the secret pressure points that can change a life. From Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps to Martin Luther King Jr., from the CEO of Starbucks to the locker rooms of the NFL, Duhigg explores the incredible results of keystone habits and how they can make all the difference between billions and millions, failure and success – or even life and death. 

The Power of Habit makes an exhilarating case: the key to almost any door in life is instilling the right habit. From exercise to weight loss, child-rearing to productivity, market disruption to social revolution and above all success, the right habits can change everything. 

Habits aren't destiny. They’re science, one which can transform our businesses, our communities and our lives.

©2012 Charles Duhigg (P)2012 Random House Audiobooks

Critic reviews

"It’s a fascinating insight into making and breaking habits and offers practical advice, funny stories and critical thinking." ( Press Association)

What listeners say about The Power of Habit

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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Only stories, no evidence

This book is from beginning to the end an example for all kind of cognitive fallacies and biases.

Don't get me wrong:
I believe that most of the author's hypotheses are true. But, the author does a very poor job of showing convincing evidence for his hypotheses.

You encounter instead hindsight bias, availability bias, non-sequiturs and anecdotal evidence.

For example, the author gives several examples of success stories, like "CEO "x" was very successful. CEO "x" used to do "y". Therefore, doing "y" is the reason why CEO "x" was successful. "

What about all the other CEOs who did "y" but weren't successful?
What else did CEO "x" do? Maybe one of THOSE things also contributed to the success as well?

I found myself repeatedly saying: "You cannot conclude that from what you just told me!"

Only few examples are given, where a scientific approach and unbiased logic were used.


I also think, that some anecdotes lighten up the flow of a non-fiction-book.
But an entire book full of anecdotes?

Furthermore, most of the stories are soooo tedious. E.g. I had to fast forward the story about this coach guy....

Also, I found the narrator a little bit annoying: in my opinion there was too much over-emphasizing and dramatization.

Over all, I regret the time for listening to this book.

I give two stars instead of just one star, because the hypotheses shown in this book are very interesting.

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35 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

I want more

Where does The Power of Habit rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

it is probably in the top 10%

Any additional comments?

The book is such a tease!! hold on, it is probably not fair to say that. the book is really valuable it offers great insight into the mind and how it works, into how habits form. but I need more.

1) there is so much around us that take advantage of how habits form, in a way that is sometimes (in my view) unethical. it makes me question a lot of the marketing that takes place. also made me wonder who has access to my habits and how do they use it. SCARY

2) the book offers no recipe for change. it tells you change is possible, it tells you the ingredients of the habit which can be potentially used for affecting change but it still leaves you wondering how to portion out the ingredients. not intentionally but just because of the nature of habit and the nature of individuals and how divers they are. it makes me want more.

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10 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Truly Life Changing

Any additional comments?

If you're reading this then chances are, you want to change something in your life. I've read self help books for years, some good, many terrible. This book stands head and shoulders above them all because the core concept of the book is a prerequisite for any other self help book to work.

In my opinion, anyone can write a self help book full of useful tips. You know the ones - "start with your outcome in mind, set goals, seek the advice of mentors, exercise in the morning, blah blah blah". Nothing wrong with any of that advice ..... other than the fact that so few people have the ability to follow it.

This book is the missing foundation. It's the platform that once in place will provide you the means to make successes of all the other self-help books out there (if you still need them that is).

And one more thing. Duhigg's methodology isn't really 'his' methodology. It relies on current research surrounding the triggers and rewards that make us do the things we do. It's refreshing to read a self-help book like this; one where the author forms his conclusions from empirical research instead of the all too frequent self help author who wakes us one day and writes a book about how much better our lives would be if we were self-disciplined.

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9 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

anecdotal

Lots of anecdotes, little science.
I exoected more studies and actionable advice backe by science. instead its a collection of stories about alcoholics anonymous et cetera and the studies are sort of buried among all of those. but maybe that is your thing!

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3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Not what I expected.

While the book teaches the fundamentals of habits and in the end accomplishes what it promised to do, in my opinion the countless stories are not needed at all. It goes in great unnecessary detail and in the end the points made are the same. This book could have been half the pages it is and that might be an understatement! Do not purchase this if you're looking for a compact book that goes straight to the point. This could be great for people that want to learn more about habits while not being bombarded with complex terminology but rather digest the book through entertaining stories.

Overall it's not a bad book but definitely not for me since I feel it wasted more time than it taught me.

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2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Good book with interesting facts.

A must read to understand the nature of habits and habit forming and how to use it to our advantage.

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1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Good storyline and performance

I love the way the author, Charles Duhigg, uses the power of parallel storylines to bring out key learning points. Well written with good examples.

Good performance by the narrator, Mike Chamberlain, to bring the right expression for each character.

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1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Fascinating insight to ourselves

Really enjoyed the unmasking of the automatic things we do every day and why. The mix of personal, company and societal habits added an interesting dynamic that sometimes felt a stretch but the author worked hard to connect.

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Powerful explanation of human behaviour

Succinctly explores the building blocks of humanity and the forces that tie us together. Recommended.

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Valuable! Thank you.

Fantastic content. I can't recommend it enough. This content, put into practice, have such great potential to improve one's life and that of their family and friends. Thank you Mr Duhigg, the fantastic narrator and the publisher's.

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