An introduction to habit theory

Date: 10/06/2020 Written by: Daisy 13 minutes to read.
Understanding human behaviour

At Social Change UK, we employ behavioural science and psychological theory in order to understand human behaviour so that we know how best to change it. One area which has recently piqued our interest is habit theory.

Habit theory explores the psychology of the many habits which make up our behaviour. It proposes that behaviour is tied to the context in which it occurs due to a learned stimulus-response association. When we are faced with the situational cues related to the context, we execute the associated behaviour. 

We are both consciously and unconsciously aware of our habits, many of which are automatic. In some cases, the automaticity of a habit can be so strong that it overrides behavioural intention, which may actually be different. As such, we can often execute a given behaviour without even being aware that we are doing it.

In this paper, we explore what habit theory is and how we can work to change habits in order to support efforts to change behaviour for the better. Once you’ve had a read, if you want to find out more about the approaches and disciplines we use to create positive social change, then get in touch with our team today!

You might also like

We create meaningful digital products that connect with people and make positive change possible.

Home of the changemakers.

We just need a bit more info

* indicates required

Marketing Permissions

Social Change will use the information you provide on this form to be in touch with you and to provide updates and marketing. Please let us know all the ways you would like to hear from us:

Marketing preferences

You can change your mind at any time by clicking the unsubscribe link in the footer of any email you receive from us, or by contacting us at We will treat your information with respect. For more information about our privacy practices please visit our website. By clicking below, you agree that we may process your information in accordance with these terms.

We use Mailchimp as our marketing platform. By clicking below to subscribe, you acknowledge that your information will be transferred to Mailchimp for processing. Learn more about Mailchimp's privacy practices here.

Project Planner