What is a LIFESTYLE? The word “liest”, according to Merriam Webster’s dictionary, means “of a small community or family”. It can also mean “one who lives close to others”. The origin of the word LIFESTYLE is probably to French, with a possible interpretation of a “place where fortunes are usually hidden”.
Lifestyle is the attitudes, interests, behaviors, and social orientations of an adult, group, or society. The word was first introduced by Austrian psychiatrist Alfred Adler in his famous article, The Case of Miss R. which has the more literal meaning of “a man’s basic nature as set early in childhood”. The word “liest” eventually became the most commonly used term in the field of social media, and today it is not far from that.
Lifestyle as a concept has been around for ages, but until the rise of social media, it had been mostly ignored by participants, researchers, and even practitioners of personality and behavior therapy. The rise of the internet, however, has changed that. Online social media allows members of a specific “blogosphere” to interact on a much larger scale than ever before, and has led to the globalization of lifestyles. In the past, an online participant could only ever be known within his or her small circle of friends-in this case, a small “blogosphere” of people who shared similar interests.
Lifestyles in the twenty-first century can be described using two different perspectives: the single lifestyle and the active lifestyle. A single lifestyle describes a solitary lifestyle, or a life that is “aimless and unconnected.” It is similar to the “atheist” viewpoint in that one has to look at life from a purely objective perspective-what it’s like to be you and not what it’s like to be someone else. On the other hand, an active lifestyle tends to be more subjective and personal, drawing its inspiration and meaning from one’s own experiences and personality traits.
So how does a person go about changing their lifestyle? One way is through healthy lifestyle changes-changing one’s diet, engaging in regular exercise, engaging in stress management, making the right choices in which to work, whether through setting goals and achieving them or simply getting out there and meeting new people-all of these behaviors create new pathways in which our bodies and minds work. And as these habits change, our metabolism changes along with it, creating new fat burning and muscle building pathways. This kind of on-going and lifelong change is what separates the truly successful from the merely moderately successful.
As one of the authors of the original LIFESTYLE book, I believe Alfred Deangela accurately described the word lifestyle as “the sum of all your activities”. This goes hand-in-hand with the power of positive thinking, as this works when thinking positively is applied to our individual psychology. Positive thinking transforms our behaviors and the universe around us, creating a new framework of what we experience in life. This framework-the world we live in-is what determines how successful or unsuccessful we are at any given time. LIFESTYLE is a guide to changing the lens we look at life through, ultimately giving a new definition and a new beginning for every individual.