Habits ought to be celebrated: they not only make us who we are, they also make us capable of wondrous feats, whether they be of a professional nature or not. Yet there are times when we wish we (or others) weren’t such creatures of habit. When a doctor or bleary eyed legal official insists on following patently inadequate, routine proceedings in spite of significant clues calling for critical, renewed engagement on their part, they fall prey to what I have called the ‘compromising’ aspect of habituation. It is not just a matter of adapting to changing circumstances. It is also a matter of retaining a willingness to question the pertinence of the goals one associates with one’s professional practice. These goals are never settled in advance, hinging as they do upon the specificities of each lay-professional encounter.