Reading & Writing Assignment (9) – The Habit

What will you do in this assignment? – You would read something entertaining, watch a video on it, and then answer a question.

And before we forget, do you remember what we recommend you to do if you want to improve your English communication skills? Yes, just like these assignments, read and write every day.

Today’s situation:

“We become what we repeatedly do” – Sean Covey in his book The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens.

Each one of us has some or the other peculiar habits that define us. I, for example, sleep at 9:00 PM(ish) and find it really hard to stay awake beyond 10:00 PM. If you have ever lived in a hostel, you can imagine how much fun I must have missed out on.

The other habit I have is that I can never say no to a cup of tea, even at 11:00 PM in sleep :). Another common habit that I believe I share with many is that I procrastinate – always leaving stuff to the last minute, especially the things that I do not enjoy (like course assignments, writing appraisals, making presentations etc.).

A friend of mine, back in college, was known for excessive compulsive hand gestures and movements while speaking. “Tie his hands if you want to shut him up,” went the joke. :)

In TV series Friends, Monica had OCPD (Obsessive Compulsive Personality Disorder). She was obsessed with things being clean and in an order – exactly as she wanted. She would not be able to sleep otherwise. Watch the clip below and see for yourself :)

Tip – If you are looking to develop a new habit (say exercising regularly, or becoming punctual), just do it for 21 days continuously without fail. After that, it would become naturally ingrained in your subconscious and become a habit. Go ahead, try it! There is a lot of science behind this advice and it works for most of the people.

Question for you– Describe a particular habit that you have and what reactions does it get you from people? Has it ever got you in any trouble or may be helped you? Please write your answer (min 100 words) in the comments below. If you are struggling to think of an answer for yourself, you can write about the peculiar habit of one of your friends or family members too.

You can also read fellow students’ answers but do so only after you have submitted your own answer so that you don’t get influenced by what others wrote. We also encourage you to share your feedback, appreciation and thoughts against others’ answers. Remember, it is a community effort and we are all in it together :). Only when you participate, you can expect others to participate and share feedback on what you wrote. Deal?

To read the next article of the series on gaining fluency in spoken English, click on the next button below. To go back to the earlier article, click on the previous button.

13 thoughts on “Reading & Writing Assignment (9) – The Habit

  • October 15, 2016 at 9:29 AM

    My close friend has this really annoying habit of filling stories with too many boring details. We had just spent an eventful winter visiting Bombay (for the IIT Bombay Cultural fest) and he was narrating our experience to our other friends. The first few times, the narration was short-ish (20 minutes by his standards) but the next few times he mentioned how long the train ride lasted, what breed the dog was, the amount of seepage in the walls, yawn, snooze. In my head I was screaming “what is the point of all of this?”

  • October 15, 2016 at 3:52 PM

    My mother is OCD about the bottle of oil in the kitchen. Somehow touching that bottle has consequences. There is a strict set of rules which one needs to abide by in order to access oil in the kitchen such as – washing your hands before and after touching that dreaded bottle of oil or once you touch the bottle you are not allowed to touch any other object in the kitchen or elsewhere without washing your hand etc.
    I have not yet been able to figure out the actual logic behind this and trust me it is extremely stressful and not to mention annoying when one decides to cook or hunt for anything in the cabinet.

  • October 15, 2016 at 8:14 PM

    Now that I have to, I would put aside my shy and mention this weird habit of mine. I have an annoying, over-impulsive, ever-encroaching, omnipresent habit of rectifying English grammar, punctuation, vocabulary and pronunciation (sometimes even spellings) in everything I hear, read, or simply come across, aloud. Even if it is in the middle of receiving rebukes from the authority, or taking lectures from professors, or reading a meme on social network or simply chitchatting with a co-passenger in a bus, i just can’t let go of a single scope. I, not only end up judging people based on their grasp on choosing the correct set of words in expressing themselves, but also delivering them, irrespective of their seniority, with the most correct explanations that fit the scenario. Right from childhood, I would inevitably circle all the wrong words in a story book, with a pencil and write the correct ones against them. And over the years, this habit has grown to the extent where I am reading something or listening to someone with the prior motive of filtering their speech, and then, if i’m left with some interest, probing into the contents. My circle, no-matter how new, takes only a couple of weeks to start calling me names like the “Gramma-Queen” or “chalti firti Wren n Martin”. Call me a factist, or a perfectionist, fail you would, because my room is always in a mess, and deadlines, are by far, not my thing. A completely incorrigible carefree personality I bear, but for this ‘habit’ of acting as the ‘savior of English Grammar’ everywhere i go! :P

  • October 16, 2016 at 9:32 AM

    So here I am writing one of my father’s habit. He has this thing in his my mind that I can not cook alone. I don’t know why but he feels that I can do anything or everything wrong while cooking without his presence. I know it is very sweet of him because he cares for me but sometimes it is very annoying. My mum always says”Tum dahez me iske saath jaana” :P.
    Whenever I am in kitchen and he gets to know that I am cooking something so he always comes and check and stand there with me which is cute as well as annoying.

    PS:- I cook really well (some dishes).

  • October 16, 2016 at 4:30 PM

    So I was coming back home in the metro from my maths tuition. After that depressing class of applications of integrals I was very tired but finally got a seat to rest. After 15 min. my phone vibrated and I received a video from my friend and after watching it I laughed so loudly(almost screaming out loud) that everyone started staring at me and few even got scared :’D . Even today I have this weird habit of laughing/screaming loudly when I see something really funny and it does turn alot of heads :p

  • October 17, 2016 at 10:12 PM

    I have a 3 yrs old, sweet and a very naughty nephew. He has a very bad habit to play with flour dough. We (my family members) try to involve him in other activities but as soon as he gets to know that dough is ready in kitchen, he says very cutely to his mom ‘Mumma, aata de do na please’. We try to explain him that it’s not good to play and waste dough as it can be used to serve a poor. For a while he understands and say, ‘I am a good boy, ab waste nahi karunga aata’ but again he gets a craving to have a piece of dough in his hand. Sometimes he becomes so violent and starts screaming when we say that you will not be getting new piece of dough. We have even provided him with clay to play but he has a craving to play with dough only.

    I will try to use the above mentioned tip and will try to keep dough away from him for 21 days and will see what happens.

  • February 12, 2017 at 4:37 PM

    My brother has obsessive compulsive personality of taking too much time to eat his meal.HE does not eat his meal at a time .He took breaks during his meal ,his this habit of eating food in 1-2 hours is very annoying .He never took his meal consistently and most of the time lies down in the middle of eating.I hoisted by dinner but my brother keeps on eating . My mom also got irritated due to his habit.

  • March 17, 2017 at 11:12 PM

    I’m getting less obsessive about this now, but I used to never sleep on the same side of my pillow more than once. I had a system of flipping my pillow and washing it frequently so that I wouldn’t have to deal with the skin and hair oils (I have a sort of phobia about oils). Sometimes I couldn’t handle even one side a night, and I would flip it a couple times. I usually ended up sleeping without the pillow for a day and just resting my head on the sheet under it when that happened. My roommates laugh at my habit every day.

  • March 29, 2017 at 11:43 AM

    Honestly speaking ,I have a bad habit of comparing myself to others in almost all aspects.Whatever I do I just aim for perfection with a hope that no one would do better than me,without realizing that everyone has got unique way of performing things and one cannot be exactly like the other.I am fed up of this habit of mine and often it gives rise to additional stuff like jealousy.Though a competitive spirit is fruitful for us but it ruins oneself if it gets the hold of one’s mind.Always one will be overwhelmed by the immense pressure and his mind would be a residence to short temperdness.I just try to get out of this and do what I want irrespective of what others have views.All I want is just to be myself and lead a peaceful life by just boycotting the competitive feeling.I do not want to reveal things to others.I am what I am and no one has got right to judge my level of conscience.

  • March 31, 2017 at 10:53 AM

    One of my cousin Harshit has a habit of exaggerating things. When he was in class 1, he used to tell us that he fought with a class 12 boy and defeated him in the fight. We to laugh on his gossips and his mom used to say don’t believe him he brags a lot. He has grown up now and he is in college but, no believes him. Few days ago, he told that he ride the bike at 120 which was almost next to impossible to believe because he has recently started riding a bike.

  • March 31, 2017 at 10:59 AM

    One of my cousin Harshit has a habit of exaggerating things. When he was in class 1, he used to tell us that he fought with a boy who is in class 12 and he defeated him in the fight. We to laugh on his talks and his mom used to say don’t believe him he brags a lot. He has grown up now and pursuing his engineering but no believes him. A few days ago, he told that he ride the bike at 120 which was almost next to impossible to believe because he has recently learned to drive a bike. He always has such things to tell and I always pretend that if I am actually believing him.

  • July 20, 2020 at 7:09 AM

    when i was pursuing 1st year ,one of my faculty always try to insult me because of my poor communication skills .” At that time i decided at any cost i wanna good at my communication skills and prove myself infront of him” . I have a habit of wake up early morning daily from my childhood . I spent that time to improve my communication skills . one fine day hackathon was conducted at my collage. I participated in that hackathon. I am a team leader of my project . I explained about my project infront of judges who came from various countries like Japan ,Spain ,Nepal, Chaina . They appreciated a lot for my project explanation and my communication skills . I got first prize in that hackathon . One who is always insulted me that day he also congratulated me instead of insulting .”” yes, i proved myself infront of him””.

    • July 20, 2020 at 4:21 PM

      Hi Sandhya,

      Congratulations for winning the “Hackathon” contest. Glad to hear that you took a step to improve your communication skills. Keep growing. :)



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