"Practice makes habit" - Bruce Lipton
What you practice becomes habitual. Not all habits are bad, in fact, we need habits to move through the day efficiently and effectively.
When we learn something and repeat it consistently over time, that behaviour becomes stored in our subconscious mind, we're then able to perform that task without giving it much thought (walking, driving, most tasks we do every day). According to Dr. Lipton, the first seven years of life, are when the brain observes and "programs" the subconscious mind. During this deeply informative time, the stories we hear about ourselves and the world around us from our families, friends and teachers, create the tape that will replay itself until we shine the light of our awareness upon it.
It is said that 95% of what we think and do everyday is governed by the subconscious mind. The remaining mere 5%, is directed by the conscious mind, the creative thinking & feeling part of our brains. Only 5%, the rest of the time we are on auto-pilot!
From a yogic perspective, we are born with and will continue to acumulate samskaras throughout our life. Samskara, is often translated as an imprint or mind-body groove. Imagine a bicycle spinning its wheels in wet mud; the more the wheels spin, the deeper the groove gets, and the harder it is to get out of. In the same way, samskaras are created when we repeatedly think, feel or do anything consistently over time. As as result, they also govern our behaviour, like the grooves on a vinyl record replaying the same song.
The beauty of it all, is that modern science is now proving what yogis since long ago have known (of course); our brains are equisitely malleable and responsive to the environment we create; within and around ourselves.
Part of the practice of yoga, is to bring awareness to ourselves about ourselves, so we can minimize or eliminate damaging samskaras, and consciously choose the imprints we want to leave on ourselves and our world.
Your nature is freedom. Your life is your practice and your story. Choose the music you want to play.