A Habit Experiment

I’m trying to understand the neurobiological structure of habits, and I’d like your help. Here’s a quick experiment (takes 15 seconds to do, and 1 minute to report) that you may find interesting.

Step 1: With a pen (or pencil) and paper, write the word “situation” in cursive.


Step 2: Notice how you feel.

Step 3: Write the word “situation” in cursive again, but this time DO NOT lift your pen from the paper when you finish the last stroke of the N. In other words, do not go back and cross the T’s or dot the I’s.


Step 4: Keep still for 5 seconds, and notice how you feel.

Step 5: Describe your experience in the Comments section on this page.

Many thanks!

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  1. #1 • Lyena Solomon said on December 21 2012:

    The first “situation” was making me feel like I needed to add more words to it. But the act of writing the word was complete. Task well-done feeling. Now, the second one took some concentration to write. After I looked at it, all I wanted to do is correct the incompleteness of it. I did not think of “next step” or what else I needed to do. Task messed up feeling.

    Hope it helps. I think, it is more of a pride in what we do. I want my products to be high quality because they represent me. If I write badly, it will be a reflection on me that I do not want to happen.