It is said that early to bed and early to rise makes a man health, wealthy and wise. Early to bed and early to rise is a good habit. A habit means repetition of the same action in similar circumstances. All men have habits. There are good and bad habits. They are of different kinds. Habits are acts which men indulge in to satisfy their needs. These habits are developed or learn from different sources. Drinking water, taking breakfast, lunch and dinner and sleeping at nights are habits, based on instinct. Man has no control over thirst, hunger and sleep. They are therefore inborn habits. There are other habits acquired like brushing your teeth, taking a bath, wearing clothes, combing your hair etc., which help a man to look neat and healthy. A walk in the morning is a good habit for old men.
The needs of society develop in men some good habits. Man is a social animal and he can not live in isolation. Respecting elders, wishing ‘Good morning’, ‘Good evening’ and ‘Good night’ are good habits. Serving the cause of poor and needy, and respecting the social laws like observing queue are good habits. Men live in groups. These groups influence some habits. A man laughs when others in the group weep. These are group habits. Man wants happiness and peace. Listening to music and reading a book are good habits, which help a man to spend a peaceful life. Going to a temple or offering daily prayers are habits, which serve the needs of the soul.
Education is based on the principle of habit formation. Repetition makes learning easy. Learning a language i.e. speaking, reading and wring is based on habit. Similarly education helps in the development of good habits like punctuality, attention, concentration, cooperation, discipline etc… As there are good habits, there are had habits too. We acquire them both from our friends and from the society in which we live. Smoking, drinking alcohol, drugging, speaking untruth, teasing the weak, committing acts of theft may all be considered as bad habits. Habits are easy to acquire but difficult to give up. They have a great hold on people and are not easily broken. So it is better not to acquire a bad habit than try to give it up later. Good habits lead to good manners.