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Learning to effectively manage habits

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James Clear, author of the bestselling Atomic Habits, believes that any habit is created and destroyed in four steps.

The chain for the formation of any habit: stimulus-desire-response-reward. For example, you see a beautiful bag in the window – this is an incentive, you start to crave to buy it and have already mentally made two or three images with it – this is a desire. Then you go to the store and buy it – this is a response to the stimulus, and then the reward comes: you are the owner of a new bag.

If you do this once, it won’t form a habit. And if you go shopping every week, looking for new stimuli, your brain will form a stable connection: “This is my pleasure, shopping is good, buy something else.” And at some point, you may find that shopping addiction is your new habit, because of which you can’t make your loan payment on time, but have five pairs of identical jeans.

Most of our daily habits were formed long ago, and we don’t even notice when we are acting automatically.

Habits are a kind of “factory settings” that we set ourselves during our lives. And it is in our interest to change them if we want to improve the performance of our internal “computer”. To change your habits, you need to change their four components, “hack” the system – stimulus-desire-response-reward.

To form a new habit, you need to: make the fulfillment obvious, attractive, simple, and learn to get satisfaction from the new habit.

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