Character training / habit forming is there a difference probably not. Probably when rubber hits the road we are talking about one in the same but . let me make a distinction.
I believe character gives us the why for habits.
- Why should I do this over and over and over again?
- Why should I do this when I dont feel like it?
- Why should I when simply I dont want to!
Because of character character is the pursuit of right responses to people and circumstances. Habits help us get there.
In a sense a habit trains the brain. When we do something over and over again it becomes the shortcut our brain will choose when faced with a decision. When habits are formed choices become instinctive, without much thought. If we are going to be intentional about our actions then we need to do the thinking part before the habit is formed. We need to know why we are establishing this habit.
Im being pedantic, maybe, but if we have empty habits then they do us no good. A habit is as good as the character it produces. So when we set out to establish a new habit, or even maintain an old one, knowing why this habit is important will help us be committed to that habit.
The habits of cleaning your teeth, eating healthy or exercising there is the underlying sense of responsibility to look after that which God has given you.
The habit of making your bed, cleaning the sink, or sweeping the floor there is the underlying sense of hospitality of enjoying your home environment with other people.
The habit of study there is the underlying sense of diligence of applying yourself wholeheartedly to all that you put your hand to.
So I ask myself –
- What habits do I want to see in my life? In my childrens lives?
- Why do I want those habits established?
- Is there an underlying character that will give the why and therefore establishing the purpose to pursue this habit?
Why should I pursue this habit? Because of the character it will produce in me (or my children).