Jeremy Dean

Making Habits, Breaking Habits

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Habits are more powerful than your will – if you know how to make them work for you Two strings are hanging from a ceiling, one at the centre of the room, one near the wall. You’re asked to tie the strings together, but you can’t reach both at the same time. You look around the room and see a table and a pair of pliers. How would you solve the problem? When confronted with challenges, most people let habits rule them (in this case, ignoring the pliers, the creative tool at your disposal). That is not surprising when you realise that at least a third of our waking hours are lived on auto-pilot – ruminating over past events, clicking through websites trawling for updates and the like. Such unconscious thoughts and actions are powerful. But the habits of the mind do not have to control us – we can steer them.
Drawing on hundreds of fascinating studies, psychologist Jeremy Dean – the mind behind the hugely popular and insightful website PsyBlog – shares how the new brain science of habit can be harnessed to your benefit, whether you’re hoping to eat moreveg, take an evening run, clear out your email backlog, or be more creative when faced with challenges at work and at home.
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    Stevan Dimitrijevichar citeretsidste år
    Three characteristics have emerged: firstly, we perform habits automatically without much conscious deliberation. Secondly, habitual behaviors provoke little emotional response by themselves. Thirdly, habits are strongly rooted in the situations in which they occur.
    Valentyna Brusenkohar citeretfor 4 år siden
    Our mental habits can change in this way because our minds are so good at spotting patterns; indeed, it’s one of the mind’s chief functions
    Valentyna Brusenkohar citeretfor 4 år siden
    . The reason is that habits, through their repetition, lose their emotional flavour. Like anything in life, as we become habituated our emotional response lessens. The emotion researcher Nico Frijda classifies this as one of the laws of emotion, and it applies to both pleasure and pain

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