- Cues – A habit starts with a trigger in our environment, it could be the time of day, something we see, an emotion like hunger or boredom, or a route we take.
- Routine – This could be what we do, what we eat, what we say, or how we react. This is when we go into auto-pilot often without any thought at all.
- Reward – The final step is the reward, or the benefit we get from the habit. It could be a feeling, or something accomplished.
As we start a new year, some of us will make resolutions, others will refute the concept and decline to participate in the annual ritual of forming resolutions that will soon be broken. Regardless of what camp you are in – consider habits as an alternative to traditional resolutions. Look at opportunities to create new habits or replace old habits with new and improved habits. Charles Duhigg in The Power of Habit describes habits as the cycle of cues, routines, and rewards.