habit

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habit

1. Psychol a learned behavioural response that has become associated with a particular situation, esp one frequently repeated
2. Botany Zoology the method of growth, type of existence, behaviour, or general appearance of a plant or animal
3. Crystallog short for crystal habit

Habit

 

an established mode of behavior whose performance by an individual in a certain situation becomes a need. Habits arise from the repeated practice of an action. In contrast to such practice, however, the decisive moment in the formation of a habit is not so much the mastering of an ability or a mode of action as it is the development of a new, functional need to practice this ability under certain conditions. An example is the alleged need to wash one’s hands before eating.

Habits are usually involuntary and for the most part unconscious. They may be the result of upbringing, but they often arise spontaneously. They may be restricted to certain situations, such as the habit of turning off a light when leaving a room, or they may characterize an individual’s overall behavior; examples are the habit of walking rapidly or of speaking softly. Habits develop in all types of activity and embrace all aspects of life. In terms of both social behavioral norms and personality formation, some habits are valuable, leading to the formation of positive character traits. Others are harmful and may develop into undesirable proclivities. Certain habits, particularly those relating to morals, may become permanent character traits.

A. A. PUZYREI

habit

[′hab·ət]
(crystallography)
(psychology)
A repetitious behavior pattern.

habit, habit of growth

The distinctive appearance and pattern of growth of a plant.
References in classic literature ?
It had been her habit, from an almost immemorial date, to go about the country as a kind of voluntary nurse, and doing whatever miscellaneous good she might; taking upon herself, likewise, to give advice in all matters, especially those of the heart, by which means -- as a person of such propensities inevitably must -- she gained from many people the reverence due to an angel, but, I should imagine, was looked upon by others as an intruder and a nuisance.
But the long habit of victory has made them generous.
She had regained her riding habit and calash from the grisly phantom, and was, in all respects, the lovely woman who had been sitting by my side at the instant of our overturn.
And will the habit of body of our ordinary athletes be suited to them?
Again, after speaking of the frustration of some impulses which is involved in acquiring the habits of a civilized adult, he continues:
As to that, if I wanted evidence of a fact, which is abundantly apparent by the habits of the animal, I have the word of Ishmael himself.
She and her younger sister, Janet, had quarreled a good deal through force of unfortunate habit.
He lifted the latch, and turned into the bright bar or kitchen on the right hand, where the less lofty customers of the house were in the habit of assembling, the parlour on the left being reserved for the more select society in which Squire Cass frequently enjoyed the double pleasure of conviviality and condescension.
The former -- if at least they would assert their claim to be really and truly Circles, and not mere high-class Polygons with an infinitely large number of infinitesimally small sides -- were in the habit of boasting (what Women confessed and deplored) that they also had no sides, being blessed with a perimeter of one line, or, in other words, a Circumference.
And when other meat failed them, they turned to what old habit had hitherto forbidden.
Let no one imagine, however, that the lovely Fayaway was in the habit of swallowing great vulgar-looking fishes: oh, no; with her beautiful small hand she would clasp a delicate, little, golden-hued love of a fish and eat it as elegantly and as innocently as though it were a Naples biscuit.
I STOLE that other drink, and, worse than that, I began the habit of drinking alone when there was a guest, a man, a comrade, with whom I could have drunk.