Breaking a bad habit or developing a good one might be hard work, but it’s not impossible. In fact, once you know the main structure of habits, you can develop a plan to change them. This flowchart from The Power of Habit author Charles Duhigg guides you through the three steps of breaking the habit loop.
This is a universal approach to any habit you want to replace, since habits all share basic characteristics: a cue or trigger and a reward that perpetuates the routine. (In fact, we’ve mentioned a similar approach before — breaking habits with an “if-then plan”.) To change the habit, the flowchart helps you think through what you’re feeling and thinking during each stage of the habit, then substitute the old reward and old routine with new ones. It’s a great visual tool to help you practise until you have your new habit loop (or the right “keystone” habits, as Duhigg has explained in full here before) established.
Here’s the full flowchart. Click to expand or right-click to save to disk.
If you’ve got any habit rebooting tips of your own, share them with us in the comments.
Infographics! (Or, a flowchart for changing a habit) [Charles Duhigg]