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"Change is hard." "People hate change." Those were two of the most common quotes we heard when we began to study change.
But it occurred to us that if people hate change, they have a funny way of showing it. Every iPhone sold serves as counter-evidence. So does every text message sent, every corporate merger finalized, every aluminum can recycled. And we haven’t even mentioned the biggest changes: Getting married. Having kids. (If people hate change, then having a kid is an awfully dumb decision.)
It puzzled us--why do some huge changes, like marriage, come joyously, while some trivial changes, like submitting an expense report on time, meet fierce resistance?
We found the answer in the research of some brilliant psychologists who’d discovered that people have two separate “systems” in their brains—a rational system and an emotional system. The rational system is a thoughtful, logical planner. The emotional system is, well, emotional—and impulsive and instinctual.
When these two systems are in alignment, change can come quickly and easily (as when a dreamy-eyed couple gets married). When they’re not, change can be grueling (as anyone who has struggled with a diet can attest).
In those situations where change is hard, is it possible to align the two systems? Is it possible to overcome our internal "schizophrenia" about change? We believe it is.
In our research, we studied people trying to make difficult changes: People fighting to lose weight and keep it off. Managers trying to overhaul an entrenched bureaucracy. Activists combatting seemingly intractable problems such as child malnutrition. They succeeded--and, to our surprise, we found striking similarities in the strategies they used. They seemed to share a similar game plan. We wanted, in Switch, to make that game plan available to everyone, in hopes that we could show people how to make the hard changes in life a little bit easier. --Chip and Dan Heath
(Photo © Amy Surdacki)
This book has really helped me think through some positive, concrete ways to make change happen.
What I like about "Switch" is how the Heath brothers framed their book into three elements: The Rider, The Elephant, and The Path.
This is a very clever book - well written and easy to understand with lots of examples of the suggestions being put into practice.
Originally this book was required for me to read as part of a college course. I had no idea what it was even about. Hard to get into at first, but it got good fast. Read morePublished 2 days ago by Aaron
This book is a quick read that sets out the dynamics of making difficult change. The Heath brothers illustrate their principles through real stories of change taking place in... Read morePublished 5 days ago by Matt Carter
Great read. A practical book to help make the Switch. Given that most of us are bound to our habits and ways I would think a couple of reads will help.Published 6 days ago by sherkhan
The authors give me clear pictures about mindset and behaviors. Easy to understand and implement.Published 10 days ago by Apichai
This is a great book to read. Great insight into how people make decisions as groups.Published 11 days ago by Daniel L. Moore
I don't feel comfortable giving anything a 5 but I really enjoyed switch. Really informative and interesting ideas. Now I just need to try them. Read morePublished 13 days ago by Lekan Nicholson
The subtitle to Switch could sum up the book, although I think advocating the pointed and practical advice may be a more direct statement as to the point of the book. Read morePublished 16 days ago by Shannon Farrell
I have read it and found it very direct and helpful. I do not particularly like the rider/elephant metaphor but I think the behaviours and intentions described are very helpful to... Read morePublished 19 days ago by Lawrence Philbrook