Good habits are essentials for a successful life. Habits, good or bad, are formed by repetition. The more often we do anything in a special way, the more likely we are to go on doing it in the same way. At last, to do it in that way becomes a habit.
It is easy to form bad habits and difficult to form good habits. This is because on all occasions our natural tendency is to follow the line of less resistance. It needs effort and a firm hold over ourselves to take the more difficult path and to form good habits. For example, it is easier to lie in bed on a cold morning than to get up early. When we get into a difficult situation due to our own foolish action, it is easier to avoid punishment by telling a lie than by facing the consequences by telling the truth. When we are in the company of friends, it is hard to face their displeasure by refusing to drink liquor and so we do the easier thing and drink. Thus the habits of late rising, telling lies and drink liquor are formed by repetition. Good habits are also performed by repetition. They require effort and determination at first. Once a good habit early rising, we will not want to lie in like a lazy chap. Once we get into the habit of telling the truth always, it will be very difficult to tell a lie.
Habits are important because they form our character. Character is the sum total of our habits. If we form good habits, we build up a good character. If we allow bad habits to overcome us, our character becomes bad. Repeated acts form habits, habits make up character, and our character decides our success or failure in life. Good habits form a good character and it means success and happiness. Bad habits form a bad character which means sorrow and failure.
A habit, once formed, is difficult to break and as our habits settled, our character becomes set. The time habits are formed is when we are young. When a metal is molten, we can give it any shape. The branches of a young tree can be bent, but when the tree is grown, they are tough and unyielding. A child’s nature is like the molten metal or the young branch; it can be shaped or bent for good or for evil. But, when the child becomes a man, his habits are formed and his character is set, and it is very hard for him to change it. So, we should form good habits when we are young.