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  • William James: 19th century psychologist who wrote that the “will to believe” is the most important ingredient in creating change and that one of the most important methods for creating that belief is habits.
  • Larry Squire: A researcher who studies how the brain stores events. He is recognized internationally for his research investigating the organization and neurological foundations of memory. His work combines the traditions of cognitive science and neuroscience.
  • H.M. One of the most famous patients in medical history. When he was seven, he suffered a severe blow to his head which led to frequent seizures. Surgery slowed the seizures, but he was unable to form new memories. “Every person he met, every song her heard, every room he entered, was a completely fresh experience.”
  • Claude C. Hopkins: One of the leading advertising executives of his day who earned $185,000 in 1907. His rules on how to create habits in consumers are still used and he was named by Advertising Age as one of the people of the century.
  • Drake Stimson: The Procter & Gamble executive who turned Febreze into a billion dollar product. When he took over, Febreze was “the unwanted stepchild,” but by attaching the product to an already existing habit, he turned it into an enormous success.
  • Wolfram Schultz: Professor of Neuroscience at the University of Cambridge who studied how cues, rewards and habits intersect. He has applied his research to Parkinson’s disease, addictions, learning disabilities, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and schizophrenia.
  • Tony Dungy: The first African-American head coach to win a Super Bowl, Dungy “revolutionized the role of NFL head coach, using a kinder, gentler motivational style in sharp contrast to the league’s traditional in-your-face, winning-is-everything approach.”
  • Bill Wilson: The co-founder of Alcoholics Anonymous, along with his friend Dr. Bob Smith, was sober for over thirty-five years, but he still had his demons. “He suffered from debilitating bouts of clinical depression, was a womanizer, and experimented with LSD.”
  • Nathan Azrin: One of the developers of habit reversal training is the author of Toilet Training in Less Than a Day, the popular how-to guide which has sold three million copies and has been reproduced in dozens of languages. He also invented the “time-out” which has replaced spanking for most parents.
  • Paul O’Neill: In 2000, the Alcoa CEO retired and was appointed secretary of the treasury by President George Bush. Immediately after taking office, he zeroed in on a few key issues, including worker safety. But his politics were out of sync with the President’s and he was asked to resign after just two years.
  • Michael Phelps: The Olympic swimmer was introduced to the sport by his two older sisters, Whitney and Hillary. As a young child, Phelps was afraid to put his head underwater, so he began his Gold Medal career floating on his back.
  • Howard Schultz: The owner of Starbucks, who took the chain from six coffee shops to an international business, sold his blood to pay for college. His inspiration was the coffee shops he visited in Milan.
  • Steve Bartels:  The executive at Arista Records convinced listeners they wanted to hear “Hey Ya!” is the force behind Justin Bieber, who says Bartels, has made a real connection with his fans through social media. “He talks to them through these platforms. They are the first to know what he is doing, recording, performing, eating, etc.”
  • Rick Warren: The pastor of Saddleback Church has named “poverty, disease, spiritual emptiness, self-serving leadership, and illiteracy” as the major problems facing the world. In response he offers The Peace Plan, an effort to mobilize Christians around the world.
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