Episode 166: Charles Duhigg – How To Create Habits Using Mental Models

Charles Duhigg, is a reporter for The New York Times, and the best selling author of multiple books, including  The Power of Habit and Smarter Faster Better. They about the science of habit formation in our lives, companies and societies.

He’s worked at the Times since 2006. His latest series focused on Apple and was named “The iEconomy.” It won a Pulitzer prize for explanatory reporting in 2013.

He studied history at Yale and received an MBA from Harvard Business School. He’s appeared on This American Life, N.P.R., The Newshour with Jim Lehrer, and Frontline.  Details on his newest book, Smarter Faster Better: a fascinating book that explores the science of productivity, and why managing how you think is more important than what you think—with an appendix of real-world lessons to apply to your life.
At the core of Smarter Faster Better are eight key productivity concepts—from motivation and goal setting to focus and decision making—that explain why some people and companies get so much done. Drawing on the latest findings in neuroscience, psychology, and behavioral economics—as well as the experiences of CEOs, educational reformers, four-star generals, FBI agents, airplane pilots, and Broadway songwriters—this painstakingly researched book explains that the most productive people, companies, and organizations don’t merely act differently.

Episode 166: Charles Duhigg – How To Create Habits Using Mental Models

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The Learning Leader Show

“Lorne Michaels creates psychological safety.”

In This Episode, You Will Learn:

  • Common themes of sustained excellence = Creating a habit of thinking deeply
    • It’s possible to be busy all the time and never accomplish anything
  • Having “contemplative routines” — Habits, priorities.  Michael Lewis is a great example — He’s always finding great stories
  • There is a diversity in how people succeed
  • It’s very easy to be reactive — The brain prefers this
  • The most successful people take time to think — Needs in life change
  • The art of pairing stretch goals with SMART goals.  Structure.  Write this down
    • Specific
    • Measurable
    • Achievable
    • Realistic
    • Timeline
  • Every morning creates a new to do list — Stretch goals are most important
  • There are practices in order to be productive and practices to be happy
  • 2 Categories
    • What you have
    • What is going to happen
  • Mentals Models — The stories we tell ourselves prior to the event happening “what are all the things that could possibly go wrong on this flight?”
  • Nurses in a NICU — Very easy to be overcome with details
  • Saturday Night Live
    • Everyone gets to speak in equal proportion
    • People show each other who is listening
    • There is a psychological safety in their approach
  • Lorne Michaels forces this safety
  • The power of story telling

“There is a diversity in how people succeed.  That’s why thinking is so important.”

Continue Learning:

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Episode 078: Kat Cole – From Hooters Waitress To President of Cinnabon

Episode 071: Nate Boyer – Green Beret, Texas Football, The NFL

Episode 073: Jay Bilas – World Class ESPN Basketball Broadcaster, Toughness, Fixing The NCAA

Episode 107: Simon Sinek – Leadership: It Starts With Why

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Episode edited by the great J Scott Donnell

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