The Loop

The Loop

Episode: 014

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The Loop

Craig Groeschel tells a great story about his dog Sadie.

Sadie follows predictable routines based on visual cues.
We tend to do the same thing. Like Sadie, we are creatures of habit. We respond to simple cues.

And if we’re going to start healthy habits and stop hurtful ones,
We need to first make sure we understand how habits work.

What Is a Habit?

A habit is like autopilot or cruise control for the brain. The human brain seeks out ways to save energy. One of the ways it accomplishes this is through habits. Habits allow us to do things without engaging the brain to think about them or the need to make decisions.

A  habit allows good or bad behavior to happen without your brain having to take charge. -Craig Groeschel

How Are Habits Born?

    1. Cue

    1. Response

    1. Reward

James Clear adds a fourth option:

    1. Cue

    1. Craving

    1. Response

    1. Reward [2]

Cue
A trigger that alerts your brain to go into autopilot by engaging the habit. [1]

Craving
The craving is the physical, mental, or emotional need the cue leads you to want to satisfy.

Response
The response is the behavior you routinely fall into.

Reward
The reward is how the behavior makes you feel.

If you engage in the same loop–cue, craving, response, reward–enough times, the process will become automatic. -Craig Groeschel

Get Intentional About Your Cues

    1. Place

    1. Time

    1. Mood

    1. Moments

    1. People

PLACES
“A place can be the cue that initiates a habit loop.”
Example: 
When you get in bed, your body knows it is time to sleep.

TIMES

“Certain times can trigger behaviors.”

Example: 
If you typically exercise early in the morning, you might feel inspired to go for a run or ride a bicycle.

At night, when everyone is asleep, you may tend to worry as you lie in bed.

“Time and place matter a lot. When we create a plan for establishing new habits and ending old ones, time and place will be essential.”

Here’s our strategy:

    1. We will create time and place triggers to start a good habit.

    1. We will remove time and place triggers to stop a bad habit.

MOODS
“Moods can cue cravings and lead us into behaviors.”

HALT Acronym
Hungry, Angry, Lonely, and Tired.

MOMENTS
“Certain types of moments launch specific habit loops.”

PEOPLE
“Wrong people can be cues that lead us in the wrong direction. The good news is that right people can trigger right behavior. Studies prove that the closer you get to someone, the more likely it is you’ll have the same habits.”

Exercise

Working through the five major triggers/cues, list positives and negatives for each in your life right now. Remember, these are to discover consistent tendencies, not one-off incidents.

PLACES
Places that cue a positive response:
Places that trigger a negative response:

TIMES
Times that cue a positive response:
Times that trigger a negative response:

MOODS
Moods that cue a positive response:
Moods that trigger a negative response:

MOMENTS
Moments that cue a positive response:
Moments that trigger a negative response:

PEOPLE
People that cue a positive response:
People that trigger a negative response:

Principle

A habit is basically behavioral autopilot born of the process of cue, craving, response, and reward.

Walk with the wise and become wise;
associate with fools and get in trouble.
-Proverbs 13:20 NLT

Sources:

[1] Groeschel, C. (2023). The Power to Change: Mastering the Habits That Matter Most. Zondervan.

[2] Clear, J. M. (2018). Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones. https://catalog.umj.ac.id/index.php?p=show_detail&id=62390

Transcript

0:00:00.000,0:00:06.360
Hello and welcome to The Overflow Podcast. My name
is Craig Booker. The title of this episode is The

0:00:06.360,0:00:13.140
Loop a lot of the material for this week’s episode
was inspired by Craig Groeschel’s book The Power to

0:00:13.140,0:00:19.380
Change – Mastering the Habits That Matter Most. Note:
I will talk a lot about mental health but please

0:00:19.380,0:00:25.080
note this is not a substitute for therapy or
mental health care I am not a counselor or a

0:00:25.080,0:00:29.820
physician if you need help with mental health
challenges please find a qualified mental

0:00:29.820,0:00:36.300
health professional so last week we talked about
flossing saved my life we were talking about if

0:00:36.300,0:00:41.580
we want to make positive changes we don’t have to
do really big miraculous things to make changes in

0:00:41.580,0:00:47.580
our life we just have to start small with small
habits we’re picking up from there this week we

0:00:47.580,0:00:53.460
are talking about the title of this section is
the loop in this chapter or this section Craig

0:00:53.460,0:01:01.020
Rochelle goes on talking about telling this story
and it he kind of takes a funny approach to it and

0:01:01.020,0:01:08.280
he starts out talking about he’s talking about his
dog Sadie and he starts talking about Sadie as if

0:01:08.280,0:01:14.640
Sadie is a human being almost or he gives you the
impression but he throws some humor in there about

0:01:14.640,0:01:21.840
about Sadie uh you know messing in their yard and
so uh he talked he tells this great story about

0:01:21.840,0:01:28.320
Sadie to illustrate a point and he said Sadie
follows predictable routines based on visual

0:01:28.320,0:01:36.540
cues so he goes into a describing how you know
when he goes to the back door and he I believe

0:01:36.540,0:01:44.580
he grabs a leash that Sadie knows what’s going to
happen next or if you know he grabs I guess the

0:01:44.580,0:01:51.000
garbage cans and starts making his way down the
driveway Sadie knows that they’re taking out the

0:01:51.000,0:01:57.720
trash and Sadie’s running down the driveway he’s
using these illustrations of his dog Sadie to show

0:01:57.720,0:02:04.740
how Sadie follows these predictable routines based
on visual cues likewise as human beings we tend

0:02:04.740,0:02:11.220
to do the same thing like Sadie we are creatures
of habit we respond to simple cues and if we’re

0:02:11.220,0:02:16.560
going to start healthy habits and stop hurtful
ones we need to First make sure we we understand

0:02:16.560,0:02:24.120
how habits work what is a habit a habit is like
autopilot or cruise control for your brain the

0:02:24.120,0:02:31.260
human brain seeks out ways to save energy and one
of the ways it accomplishes this is through habits

0:02:31.260,0:02:38.520
habits allow us to do things without engaging
the brain to think about them or the need to make

0:02:38.520,0:02:45.780
decisions quote Craig Rochelle says a habit allows
a good or bad behavior to happen without your

0:02:45.780,0:02:51.120
brain having to take charge you know some of the
examples I think that he discusses in this chapter

0:02:51.120,0:03:01.200
are like if you’ve ever driven a vehicle maybe to
work or to a place that you go to frequently you

0:03:01.200,0:03:05.580
know sometimes you get there and you don’t even
remember how you got there or you don’t remember

0:03:05.580,0:03:14.940
driving there and that happens because your brain
has formed a habit for going to that destination

0:03:16.800,0:03:26.340
um and so it’s pretty crazy that our brains can do
that um but we get in a routine and that’s how our

0:03:26.340,0:03:33.180
brains can serve energy is through that habit
how are habits born and there’s Concepts that

0:03:33.180,0:03:40.380
a lot of experts agree upon and these that are
presented first and the notes are Q like c-u-e

0:03:40.380,0:03:49.740
response reward so another habits expert if you
haven’t heard of James Clear James Clear wrote a

0:03:49.740,0:03:55.440
book called Atomic habits if you’re if you like
to read or listen to audiobooks it’s a it’s an

0:03:55.440,0:04:02.820
awesome book to check out and learn more about the
process of forming habits but James Clear adds a

0:04:02.820,0:04:08.820
fourth option that Craig Rochelle references
in this so you still have the cue craving the

0:04:08.820,0:04:13.860
response but he adds a fourth reward just to
give a little bit of detail on each of these

0:04:13.860,0:04:21.060
a q is a trigger that alerts your brain to go
into autopilot by engaging The Habit craving is

0:04:21.060,0:04:27.960
the physical mental or emotional need the cue
leads you to want to satisfy and the response

0:04:27.960,0:04:34.500
is the behavior you routinely fall into and then
there’s reward and the reward is how the behavior

0:04:34.500,0:04:41.640
makes you feel another quote if you engage in the
same Loop Q craving response reward enough times

0:04:41.640,0:04:46.560
the process will become automatic and that’s
Craig Rochelle we’re going to get intentional

0:04:46.560,0:04:52.440
about our cues so these are things that if you
already have the Habit you probably don’t even

0:04:52.440,0:04:58.800
recognize that they’re there he goes into detail
about some potential cues the different kind of

0:04:58.800,0:05:06.360
categories and one of them is place so a specific
place a time a mood different moments and people

0:05:06.360,0:05:15.720
so Place time mood moments and people places and
a place can be the cue that initiates initiates

0:05:15.720,0:05:21.540
a habit Loop example when you get in bed your
body knows it’s time to sleep now that’s kind of

0:05:21.540,0:05:27.120
given that you don’t do a lot of other things
when you go to bed like you don’t stay up and

0:05:27.120,0:05:33.480
watch TV a lot you know a lot of other activities
like reading in bed experts recommend that you

0:05:33.480,0:05:42.360
only sleep in bed right so your body has that cue
to you know get you into the proper mood or state

0:05:42.360,0:05:49.980
of mind to sleep Place could be your bed if you
work at a desk and you only use that desk for work

0:05:49.980,0:05:56.280
your body or your brain would know that when you
go to that desk it’s time to work there’s times

0:05:56.280,0:06:03.720
certain times can trigger behaviors example if
you typically exercise early in the morning you

0:06:03.720,0:06:10.080
might feel inspired to go for a run or ride a
bicycle at night when everyone is asleep you

0:06:10.080,0:06:16.680
may tend to worry as you lie in bed the book says
time and place matter a lot when we create a plan

0:06:16.680,0:06:23.340
for establishing new habits and ending old ones
time and place will will be essential so these

0:06:23.340,0:06:28.800
are really important things to take note of when
we’re trying to establish new habits or possibly

0:06:28.800,0:06:34.740
when we’re trying to stop old ones here’s our
strategy we’ll create time and place triggers to

0:06:34.740,0:06:41.340
start a good habit we will remove time and place
triggers to stop a bad one next category is moods

0:06:41.340,0:06:49.740
moods can cue cravings and lead us into behaviors
there’s an acronym that was provided in the book

0:06:49.740,0:06:56.100
and it’s something I’ve heard elsewhere it’s
the the acronym Halt h-a-l-t and that stands for

0:06:56.100,0:07:06.780
Hungry angry lonely and tired it goes into detail
talking about how these specific moods can be cues

0:07:06.780,0:07:13.740
for different habits you know like if you’re alone
at night you may be prompted to do something that

0:07:13.740,0:07:19.740
you normally wouldn’t do if you’re you’re angry
and tired so you have a a couple of these things

0:07:19.740,0:07:26.100
of these moods going going on that could cue
your body to do something that you’ll regret

0:07:26.100,0:07:31.980
a lot of times when I’m angry and tired that’s
just not a good combination for anything or I’m

0:07:31.980,0:07:37.140
not going to have a lot of productive behaviors
when I’m in that mood we also have moments so

0:07:37.140,0:07:44.160
certain types of moments launch specific habit
Loops we also have people and it says the wrong

0:07:44.160,0:07:49.680
people can be cues that lead us in the wrong
direction the good news is that right people

0:07:49.680,0:07:55.500
can trigger right Behavior studies prove that the
closer you get to someone the more likely it is

0:07:55.500,0:08:01.920
that you’ll have the same habits I don’t know you
know what your personal experience with this is

0:08:01.920,0:08:09.600
but I know that in my past when I hung out with
certain people it led to not the best behaviors

0:08:10.380,0:08:18.480
and so you know at the time maybe I didn’t
realize it but after a little while I realized

0:08:18.480,0:08:25.140
that hanging out with those people usually was
not positive that’s why hanging out and finding

0:08:25.140,0:08:30.900
the right group of friends is really important if
we want to make positive changes to our life for

0:08:30.900,0:08:37.080
example uh you know this group we have a group
of individuals here that in some way understand

0:08:37.080,0:08:43.140
the challenges we’re all facing likewise this
group can encourage us because they know what

0:08:43.140,0:08:48.060
we’re struggling with and what we all kind of
want to accomplish we’re all looking to make

0:08:48.060,0:08:53.820
positive changes in our life or help other people
make positive changes so this group can come

0:08:53.820,0:08:59.880
together and encourage one another to establish
these habits and so that’s one great example of

0:08:59.880,0:09:08.400
people we have an exercise in this exercise we’re
working through five major Trigger or cues okay

0:09:08.400,0:09:16.560
so you can use like trigger as a replacement for Q
work through the five major trigger cues and lists

0:09:16.560,0:09:23.160
positive and negatives for each in your life right
now so we’re going to go through this don’t feel

0:09:23.160,0:09:28.320
like you have to do this right now but I would
encourage you this week if you have time to go

0:09:28.320,0:09:34.140
through this on your own you know if you run into
the speed bumps or get stuck on something feel

0:09:34.140,0:09:39.780
free to reach out to me or other people in the
group remember these are to discover consistent

0:09:39.780,0:09:45.840
Tendencies not one-off incidents so what we’re
trying to do is uncover patterns in our Behavior

0:09:45.840,0:09:52.440
we give different categories in this exercise of
each of those things we discuss so places times

0:09:52.440,0:09:59.880
moods moments and people and other places we have
places that cue a positive response we have places

0:09:59.880,0:10:06.120
that trigger a negative response there there are
just certain places that you go that can either

0:10:06.120,0:10:12.120
have a positive or negative response and that
trigger us to do something positive or negative I

0:10:12.120,0:10:19.260
think one of the examples he gives is if you’re in
church most likely you’re not going to be tempted

0:10:19.260,0:10:24.180
to want to like smoke marijuana or something
in church likewise if you’re in church you’re

0:10:24.180,0:10:31.560
probably going to be more attuned or more likely
to want to pray and connect with God because your

0:10:31.560,0:10:37.020
brain is formed a habit of knowing when you go
to church that is for worship and that is for

0:10:37.020,0:10:42.360
connecting with God in prayer and learning through
the word so likewise you could have places that

0:10:42.360,0:10:46.440
trigger a negative response you know depending
on your background I want to be sensitive to

0:10:46.440,0:10:54.420
that say you if you go to a bar or a place that
serves alcohol that may be a cue or a trigger

0:10:55.020,0:11:01.200
that you know invokes a negative response and
that you do things that you later regret and

0:11:01.200,0:11:04.740
then we have times and we’re going to do this
is very similar to one before we’re going to

0:11:04.740,0:11:10.560
have times that q a positive response and times
that trigger a negative response a lot of people

0:11:10.560,0:11:18.420
in the evening it’s dark and it’s late a lot of
times that time of day cues a negative response

0:11:18.420,0:11:25.080
for a negative behavior so that could be like a
time of day that you have to be you know pretty

0:11:25.080,0:11:31.800
careful about your behaviors likewise that time of
day could cue a positive response maybe you have

0:11:31.800,0:11:37.860
a routine that you get up in the morning and you
have a quiet time where you’re spending time with

0:11:37.860,0:11:44.100
God you’re in your Bible you’re praying maybe
you’re seeing some worship songs and that is a

0:11:44.100,0:11:49.320
time of day that cues a positive response
so we have moods and we’re likewise we’re

0:11:49.320,0:11:55.140
gonna we’re gonna look at moods that cue
a positive response or a negative response

0:11:55.140,0:12:04.740
yeah we talked about those four that halt acronym
hungry angry lonely and tired if we have if we

0:12:04.740,0:12:11.520
make observe that we’re experiencing one of
those moods we can probably see a pattern in

0:12:11.520,0:12:18.120
behavior when we’re feeling either lonely angry
tired or hungry that something comes after that

0:12:18.120,0:12:24.720
likewise we may have certain moods that that cue
a positive response we have moments there are

0:12:24.720,0:12:29.700
certain moments that cue a positive and negative
response then we have people we talked about that

0:12:29.700,0:12:37.020
already but this is a exercise that you can go
through and just do some reflection to try to

0:12:37.020,0:12:45.240
identify some patterns in your life the passage
of scripture here is Proverbs 13 20 and this is

0:12:45.240,0:12:51.360
the New Living Translation it says walk with the
wise and become wise associate with fools and get

0:12:51.360,0:12:56.100
in trouble that’s all for this episode thank
you for watching if you like the video give

0:12:56.100,0:12:59.940
us a thumbs up and be sure to subscribe
so you don’t miss out on future episodes

Show Notes

Episode Description

In this episode, we discuss The Loop. We discover how habits are born. This is part of a study inspired by The Power To Change by Craig Groeschel. Each week, I take concepts from Pastor Craig Groeschel’s book, The Power To Change, and apply them to brain health.

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Last updated on: 02/03/2024

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