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The Power of Habit

ISBN: 9781400069286 | 1400069289
Edition: 1st
Format: Hardcover
Publisher: Random House
Pub. Date: 2/28/2012

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A thirty-four-year-old woman walks into a research laboratory outside Bethesda, Maryland. Over the past two years, she has changed almost every aspect of her life. She has quit smoking, lost forty pounds, run a marathon, and been promoted at work. The patterns inside her brain, neurologists are shocked to discover, have fundamentally changed. A group of marketers and psychologists at Proctor & Gamble gather in a conference room, watching videotapes of people making their beds. They're trying to figure out how to sell a product named Febreze that, so far, is on track to become one of the biggest flops in the company's history. Then, someone detects an almost imperceptible pattern in consumers' cleaning routines, and with just a slight shift in how the product is advertised, Febreze goes on to earn more than a billion dollars a year. A new, untested CEO takes over the helm of one of the oldest, largest, and stodgiest companies in America. He begins his tenure by noticing, then attacking, one pattern among employees-how they approach worker safety-and soon the firm, Alcoa, becomes the top performer in the Dow Jones. What do these people have in common? They all achieved success by focusing on the patterns that shape every aspect of our lives. They succeeded by transforming our 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, for the first time, why habits exist and how they can be shaped and changed. The Power of Habit explores why some people and companies never achieve real transformation, despite years of trying, while others remake themselves almost overnight. It takes you inside laboratories where neuroscientists create and extinguish habits, as though flipping a switch. It tells the stories of Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps, Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz, and civil rights hero Martin Luther King, Jr., and shows how the right habits were essential to their success. You'll go inside Proctor & Gamble, Rick Warren's Saddleback Church, Target superstores, and the nation's largest hospitals, where implementing so-called ;keystone habits ; can earn billions and mean the difference between life and death. At its core, The Power of Habit contains a exhilarating argument: The key to exercising regularly, becoming more productive, losing weight, raising exceptional children, tapping into our reserves of creativity, building revolutionary companies and social movements, conquering our most stubborn vices, and capturing success is to understand how habits work. And by harnessing this new science, we can transform our businesses, our communities, and our lives. From the Hardcover edition.

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