The Psychology of Habit

Theory, Mechanisms, Change, and Contexts

  • Bas┬áVerplanken

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xiii
  2. Bas Verplanken
    Pages 1-10
  3. Theory, Measurement, and Mechanisms

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 11-11
    2. Asaf Mazar, Wendy Wood
      Pages 13-29
    3. Amanda L. Rebar, Benjamin Gardner, Ryan E. Rhodes, Bas Verplanken
      Pages 31-49
    4. Barbara Mullan, Elizaveta Novoradovskaya
      Pages 71-90
    5. Ryan E. Rhodes, Amanda L. Rebar
      Pages 91-109
    6. Joseph B. Bayer, Robert LaRose
      Pages 111-130
  4. Breaking and Creating Habits

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 151-151
    2. Raymond G. Miltenberger, Claire A. Spieler
      Pages 153-167
    3. Marieke A. Adriaanse, Aukje Verhoeven
      Pages 169-188
    4. Bas Verplanken, Deborah Roy, Lorraine Whitmarsh
      Pages 189-205
    5. Benjamin Gardner, Phillippa Lally
      Pages 207-229
    6. Dominika Kwasnicka, Beatrice M. Konrad, Ian M. Kronish, Karina W. Davidson
      Pages 231-245
    7. Sebastian Potthoff, Nicola McCleary, Falko F. Sniehotta, Justin Presseau
      Pages 247-265
    8. Ed Watkins, Matt Owens, Lorna Cook
      Pages 267-284
    9. Inna Arnaudova, Hortensia Amaro, John Monterosso
      Pages 305-322
  5. Critical Questions and Prospects

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 323-323
    2. Claire M. Zedelius, Madeleine E. Gross, Jonathan W. Schooler
      Pages 363-378
    3. Sheina Orbell, Bas Verplanken
      Pages 397-409
  6. Back Matter
    Pages 411-418

About this book


This unique reference explores the processes and nuances of human habits through social psychology and behavioral lenses. It provides a robust definition and theoretical framework for habit as well as up-to-date information on habit measurement, addressing such questions as which mechanisms are involved in habitual action and whether people can report accurately on their own habits. Specialized chapters pay close attention to how habits can be modified, as well as widely varying manifestations of habitual thoughts and behaviors, including the mechanisms of drug addiction and recovery, the repetitive characteristics of autism, and the unwitting habits of health professionals that may impede patient care. And across these pages, contributors show the potential for using the processes of maladaptive habits to replace them with positive and health-promoting ones. Throughout this volume attention is also paid to the practice of conducting habit research.

Among the topics covered:

  • Habit mechanisms and behavioral complexity.
  • Complexities and controversies of physical activity habit.
  • Habit discontinuities as vehicles for behavior change.
  • Habits in depression: understanding and intervention.
  • A critical review of habit theory of drug dependence.
  • Questions about the automaticity of habitual behaviors.

The Psychology of Habit will interest psychologists across a wide spectrum of domains: habit researchers in broader areas of social and health psychology, professionals working in (sub)clinical areas, interested scholars in marketing, consumer research, communication, and education, and public policymakers dealing with questions of behavioral change in the areas of health, sustainability, and/or education.


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Editors and affiliations

  • Bas┬áVerplanken
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of BathBathUK

Bibliographic information