English Expressions: Talking about good and bad habits

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English Expressions: Talking about good and bad habits

Do you have any good or bad habits? A habit is something you do often. A habit can be positive or negative. For example, most people would say that smoking is a bad habit and exercising is a good habit. In this lesson, I will teach you expressions to talk about habits like “creature of habit”, “break a habit”, “force of habit”, “old habits die hard”, and more. We can also talk about habits without actually using the word itself, such as in “have an urge” and “fall back into”. Watch the video to find out what these expressions mean and how to use them. It’s a good habit to always do the quiz after watching: https://www.engvid.com/english-expressions-good-bad-habits/

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TRANSCRIPT

Is somebody smoking in here? E, are you smoking again? What a nasty habit. “Habit”. I want to teach you a new vocabulary word: “habit”, and I’m going to teach you what it means, how to pronounce it, some idioms that go with it, a couple of other phrases we use to talk about habits, and then we’re going to do a little test with some collocations. You ready? Let’s go to the board.

Habit. Notice he said: “What a nasty habit.” Well, what does that mean exactly? “Ha-bit”, “habit”, that’s the proper way to say it when you see this word. It’s a usual way of acting, so it’s something you do on a very regular basis or you do it all the time. You will notice the word “habit” when we talk about the simple present because we use the word “habit” or simple present to talk about our habits. I like to eat hamburgers. It’s like a habit. Not exactly, but you get the point. I do it regularly. I work at this school. It’s like a habit because I do it regularly, or it’s my usual way of acting or doing something. So now you can see why I’m teaching you this word because we use that word to talk about the simple present, which is grammar. You got a free grammar lesson there, son. I hope you’re happy.

Let’s go back to the second meaning. Something a person has done repeatedly until they don’t have to think… Think when they do it. So, sometimes you’re like… And someone goes: -“You’re biting your nails.” -“Oh. I didn’t notice. It’s a habit.” It’s a bad habit. There are good habits, by the way, and I’m going to just quickly talk on them before I go over here. Good habits are things like going to bed early. Right? Or studying with engVid, studying your English every night to make sure you get better at English. These are good habits. Brushing your teeth. Right? You know, remember: The habits you have will help you become the person you want to be. Keep that in mind. Okay? Now, as I finish that, let’s go to the board and talk about habits.

See this one? This is Dracula. [Laughs] I want to bite your neck. He’s a creature. You might say monster, but in this case, creature, monster, or animal. A “creature of habit” is somebody who likes routine. They like doing regular things. It brings them comfort or makes them happy. So some people like to go to work, after work come home, sit down, grab a beer, put the television on, and that’s what they like to do. They don’t want to party, they don’t want to go see their friends or play video games. They want one or two beers, watch TV, go to bed. Creatures of habit. They like routine, they don’t like it changed. Okay?

Number two. Hi-ya. That’s a hand. Okay? This is wood. So sometimes in karate you see people go: “Ah-ya! Poof”, and they break things. When you “break a habit” or if you need to break a habit it means end, stop the habit. You’re tired of doing something like biting your nails. You go: “I need to end this. No more, no more, no more. I need to break that habit. It’s embarrassing. It makes me feel bad or look bad.” So you need to break habits. Remember, there are good habits, but to be honest, when we usually talk about habit in English it’s usually bad habits. If you talk too much about your good habits, we think you’re bragging or saying how good you are. “I save all of my money. I’m so good at saving my money. I’m the best.” This reminds me of somebody. “I’m the best saver in the world. I’m the best doer of homework in the world. I always do my homework.” I’ll probably say: “Shut up. I don’t want to hear anymore.” We like to talk about our bad habits, and we tend to or we have a habit-[laughs]-of keeping our good habits to ourselves so people don’t get angry.

Number three: “force of habit”. Think of Superman. Dunh-dunh-dunh-dunh. Is very powerful, right? Can do many things. A force of habit means your habit, the repeated behaviour is so strong that you don’t think about doing it. I mean, sorry, it just happens without you thinking about it. You know? I mean, sometimes you just have a… Oh, it’s force of habit. I didn’t even know I was doing that. It just went to my mouth. […]

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