Gretchen Rubin

Gretchen Rubin

My experiments in the pursuit of happiness and good habits


Do You Text While Driving? Why You Shouldn’t–and How to Stop.

September 11th, 2015

Episode 121 of 540 episodes

Guess: What’s one habit that’s very common and extremely dangerous? Yes, of course, smoking. But what else? Using your smart phone while driving is a terrible habit. So common, so dangerous. About one quarter of car accidents involve the use of a smart phone. It’s easy to think, “Oh, I’ll just glance at the screen,” but it takes a minimum of five seconds to take a look, and if you’re going 55 mph, you’ll go the length of a football field in that time. And it turns out that just reaching for the device raises the chance of an accident. Probably, most of us know that using a phone while driving is a bad idea. And yet we’re in that habit. So how to stop? In Better Than Before, I identify twenty-one strategies that we can use to make or break our habits, and this is a great place to use the Strategy of Inconvenience. True, some people try to break this habit by working on their will-power: reminding themselves of the danger, steeling themselves to resist the siren call of the ring-tone, etc. My view: this doesn’t work very well. Don’t work on your attitude, work on your ...

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