Habit formation is the process by which behaviors become automatic. Habits can form without a person intending to acquire them, but they can also be deliberately cultivated or eliminated to better suit one's personal goals.
How We Form Habits
People develop countless habits as they navigate the world, whether they are aware of them or not. The knee-jerk nature of these behaviors can help people get their needs met more efficiently in everyday life. Yet the fact that habits become deeply ingrained in our brains means that even if a particular habit creates more problems than it solves, it can be difficult to break. Understanding how habits take shape to begin with may be helpful in dismantling and replacing them.
Meaning and Definition of Habit
Generally, what a person becomes accustomed to doing is called his habit. For example, the habit of drinking tea and eating gutka, but in psychology, the habit is taken as a learned behavior that becomes automatic by repeating it again and again. For example, initially the child has to learn to ride a bicycle, how to balance the handle; how to rotate the handle; But due to repeated cycling, a situation comes that he starts cycling without thinking, according to the situation his handle starts rotating on his own and then we can say that cycling has become his habit.
Getting up on time, getting up and sitting properly, eating and drinking properly, speaking properly, etc., all these children first learn, after that all these start happening automatically. He does not have to make any effort for them and all these become his habit.
According to Garrett, "Habit is the name of the behavior that occurs automatically due to repeated repetition."
According to Ladell, "Habit is that form of action which is initially done consciously of its own volition but becomes automatic when done again and again."
Kinds of Habits
Habits are generally divided into two categories- Good Habits and Bad Habits. Psychologist Bernard has divided habits into 3 classes- Physical Habits, Mental Habits and Emotional Habits. Psychologist Valentine has divided habits into the following 7 categories-
(1). Mechanical Habits:- In this class, Valentine has kept those habits which are related to physical activities and which once learned, he starts mechanicalizing with his body parts; like cycling.
(2). Habits of Physiological Desire:- In this category, Valentine has placed those habits; which is formed due to the physical desire of the person to do it again and again; Such as the habit of drinking tea and the habit of eating gutka.
(3). Nervous Habits:- In this category, Valentine has placed those habits of humans which are formed due to emotional imbalance in the absence of its pulse balance; Like blinking your eyes again and again.
(4). Habits of speech:- In this class, Valentine has placed those habits of humans which are related to his speech, tone of speech and speed of speech etc. For example, always speaking in a loud voice.
(5). Habits of Thought:- In this class, Valentine has kept the knowledge and thought habits of man; For example, the habit of reasoning on talk.
(6). Habits of Feeling:- In this category, Valentine has kept those habits of man which are related to his feelings; For example, serving animals and birds.
(7). Moral Habits:- In this category, Valentine has placed those habits of human beings which are based on moral values; Like speaking the truth.
Characteristics of Habits
Human beings have many good and bad habits. Their construction depends on two factors, especially the environment and the practice. When a child gets into a habit, it becomes automatic and takes a permanent form, it is difficult to get rid of it. These are the characteristics of habits.
(1). Environment Product:- In the formation of habits, environment depends more than inheritance. The way people get up, sit, move, talk and behave in the child's environment, the child learns all by imitating them and on repeating them again and again they become his habit. There are good habits like speaking the truth and helping others and bad habits like smoking beedi-cigarettes and eating gutka are created by the environment itself.
(2). Automatic:- Once the habits are formed in humans, they do not have to think or think in doing them, the situation has arisen that the action of the habit has been completed.
(3). Less Fatigue:- The person who is used to doing kind of auxiliary or mental work, he has relatively little fatigue in doing those tasks.
(4). Uniformity:- There is uniformity in the type of work or behavior in which a person is used to.
(5). Stability:- Once a habit is inculcated in a person, it becomes permanent, it is very difficult to remove it.
(6). Parts of Character:- The character of a man is identified by his habits. A person with socially agreeable and moral habits is said to be of character and a person with habits contrary to the beliefs and morals of the society is called characterless.
Importance of Habits in Education
Before entering the school, many good and bad habits have been developed in the children, some of them are helpful in the education of the children and some are hindrances. Following is the list of helpful and hindering habits in education-
|S.No.||Helpful Habits in Education||Habits hindering education|
||Cleanliness habit.||Dirt habit.|
||Habit of getting up on time.||Habit of getting up late.|
||Habit of doing physical and mental labor.||Habit of not doing physical and mental labor.
||Habit of speaking the truth.||habit of lying
||Habit of coming to school on time.||Habit of coming to school late.|
||Habit of working on time.||The habit of wishing from time to time.|
Impact of good habits in Learning
- Good habits keep children balanced both physically and mentally. They do any work patiently and on time.
- Habits are a part of children's nature, they do not have to try to work through habits, they do not get tired of doing them.
- When a taught action becomes a part of the child's habit, then he does not easily forget it again.
- It saves time in learning and also consumes less power.
- Good habits help in building character and personality.
Impact of Bad habits in Learning
- Bad habits hinder the physical and mental balance of children.
- Children who do not have the habit of doing physical and mental labor, they get tired soon in learning.
- Children who do not have the habit of getting up on time, coming to school on time and doing their work on time, they lag behind in learning.
- Bad habits also hinder the character and personality formation of children.
Building Good Habits
One of the aims of education is to form good habits in children, because good habits are helpful in learning, they build the character and personality of children. Psychologist William James has given the following 4 ways to build good habits in children-
1. Determination:- First of all, both the child and the teacher should be determined for this. Unless the children who learn and the teachers who teach do not make a determination for this, then this work cannot be done properly.
2. Action:- According to James, both the child and the teacher should start the work immediately according to the resolution; Only then this work can be done. No work gets accomplished just by thinking and making determination.
3. Continuity:- According to James, until a habit becomes permanent, continuous effort should be made to build it.
4. Exercise:- James has also emphasized that the habits that the teacher wants to create in the children should be practiced daily. With practice, any work becomes a habit.
Break Bad Habits
Habits may be harmful or health-promoting. According to psychologists, the teacher should take the following measures to get rid of bad habits of school children-
1. Self-Suggestion:- First of all, the teacher should create such situations that the children themselves think of giving up bad habits.
2. Determination:- It is also necessary that first of all the children should make a determination to leave bad habits and at the same time teachers should also make a determination to get rid of their bad habits.
3. Replacement:- It means the formation of good habits in place of bad habits. If the habit of telling the truth is inculcated in the children, then their habit of lying will automatically end.
4. Right Environment:- Formation of good habits and elimination of bad habits is possible only when children get proper environment for them in family, neighborhood and school at all places.
5. Needs of Satisfaction:- Children often steal to fulfill their needs and they often tell lies also because of this. If the proper needs of the children are met on time, then bad habits like stealing and lying can be removed.
6. Reward and Punishment:- A little punishment for bad habits and a lot of rewards for good habits are also helpful in getting rid of bad habits.
Why do humans have habits?
One likely reason people are creatures of habit is that habits are efficient: People can perform useful behaviors without wasting time and energy deliberating about what to do. This tendency toward quick-and-efficient responses can backfire, however-as when it gets hijacked by the use of addictive drugs or consumption of unhealthy food. Instinctively reaching for a cigarette after waking up or any drug associated with particular cues is a habit. So picking up a pair of running shoes after getting home each day or buckling your seatbelt without thinking about it is a habit.