So, if you're like me, you probably have at least a few bad habits you would like to break. But it's tough because no matter how hard I try, I seem to slip back into the same old routines again and again.
In the last decade, we've learned a lot about how habits work.
That's Charles Duhigg, author of the book The Power of Habit.
那是 Charles Duhigg，《習慣的力量》那本書的作者。
And in particular we've learned the neurological structure of a habit.
He says that we tend to think of habits as a single thing, but actually...
Each habit has three components: There's a cue, which is like a trigger for a behavior to start. And then there's a routine, which is the behavior itself. And then, finally, a reward, which is how our brain learns to encode that automatic behavior for the future. And one of the big differences is that for years, when people thought about habits, they focused in on the routine, on the behavior. But what we now know is that it's these cues and these rewards that really shape how habits occur and how to change them.
And Charles says that whether we like it or not, this kind of habit formation is endemic to our brain.
And what it will do is our brain will latch on to a cue that it associates with a behavior and a particular reward. And over time, that cue and that reward become more and more and more, sort of, intertwined. A particular part of your brain named the basal ganglia will relate them together. And the behavior that's associated with that, that will just sort of happen automatically.
But Charles says the good news is we can also use this knowledge to our advantage.
不過 Charles 表示，好消息是我們可以善用這項知識。
There was a big study that was done about how to create exercise habits. And so what they did is they told a group of people, "Okay, first of all, choose an obvious cue. Always go running at the same time every day or put your workout clothes next to your bed so that you see them first thing when you wake up." And then they said, "And then go for a run or go workout. And when you get back from exercising, give yourself a small piece of chocolate."
Now, this is kind of counterintuitive, right? Because people who are exercising are trying to lose weight, not eat more chocolate. And yet what the researchers knew is that their brain needed that reward. Their basal ganglia needed some reward. And what they found was that people who ate a small piece of chocolate after coming home from a run or a workout, they were much more likely to start exercising habitually.
So, according to Charles, whether you want to break a habit or start a new habit, the key is to divide the habit into its component parts: cue, routine, and reward, and design it for the result that you want.
所以，根據 Charles 所說，無論你是想改掉一個習慣，或開始養成一個新習慣，關鍵是將習慣劃分成它的構成要素：提示、慣性行為以及獎勵，並依你想達到的結果來設計。