Triggers Book Summary - Triggers Book explained in key points
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Triggers summary

Marshall Goldsmith and Mark Reiter

Creating Behavior That Lasts – Becoming the Person You Want to Be

4.2 (131 ratings)
16 mins
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    Triggers prevent us from creating change, and we don’t even realize it.

    Imagine this: It’s a beautiful summer’s day outside, with the sun warming your back and a soft breeze dancing around your ankles. It’s also your first day on a new diet. You’re enjoying the day in a park, along with many other people. Except they’re enjoying it just a little more than you are – because they’re tucking into some delicious ice cream cones. The temptation is too much. You think, “I’d like one, too! I’ll just start my diet tomorrow...”

    That ice cream was a trigger that stopped you from starting your diet. A trigger is any stimulus that reshapes our thoughts and actions. Triggers can take many forms: people, events or circumstances. Even the sound of rain is a trigger, powerful enough to conjure a memory.

    Triggers also impact you in differing ways. Their effect can be direct or indirect, internal or external, conscious or unconscious, anticipated or unexpected, encouraging or discouraging, productive or counter-productive.

    A direct trigger might be seeing a happy baby, which brings a smile to your face. An indirect trigger might be seeing a family photo that initiates a series of thoughts, which in turn causes you to call your sister. It’s great when triggers remind us to perform positive acts like these. Unfortunately, however, they’re also incredibly powerful at stopping us from creating change. Why? Because we aren’t always aware of when we’re being triggered.  

    For years, the author, out of vanity, sported a comb-over; he couldn’t admit he was going bald. Why couldn’t he admit it? Unbeknownst to him, a number of triggers in his environment were pressuring him to look sleek and young.

    That all ended one day when his hairdresser cut his remaining hair too short. After realizing that his surroundings were making him behave superficially, the author did away with his comb-over, and was finally able to embrace himself, baldness and all.

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    What is Triggers about?

    Triggers (2015) exposes the things in your life that you didn’t know were affecting you – and what you can do to stop these things from preventing you making positive change. Backed up with insightful research and filled with the experiences of the author and his clients, these blinks will help you eliminate unwanted behaviors and put you on the path to achieving your personal goals.

    Best quote from Triggers

    Feedback teaches us to see our environment as a triggering mechanism.

    —Marshall Goldsmith and Mark Reiter
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    Who should read Triggers?

    • Those who want to make their new health regimes last
    • Professionals looking to up their motivation game
    • Anyone interested in salvaging those forgotten New Year’s resolutions

    About the Author

    Marshall Goldsmith is recognized as one of the most influential business thinkers in the world. He works as an executive coach and author.

    A literary agent in New York, Mark Reiter has collaborated on 13 previous books.

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