Lifestyle is the general attitudes, interests, behaviors, and behavioral orientations of an establishment, group, or individuals. The word was originated by Austrian psychiatrist Alfred Adler in his 1931 book, The Case of Miss R. with the wider interpretation of “the basic nature of a human activity as established early on in childhood”. In his words, “the study of a social life is essentially a study of a people”.
For many decades, the word lifestyle has been used as a catchall description for any and all aspects of social behavior, but the meaning has changed over time. Now, the expression is commonly used to refer to any and all aspects of a person’s daily life. The word lifestyle is no longer limited to the field of psychology, but applies equally well to the world of sports, business, politics, medicine, and yes, even weight loss and exercising. So what exactly is it that is lifestyle? Below are some definitions, along with examples of how the term is used to describe a particular aspect of everyday life.
Healthy Lifestyle: People who live healthy lifestyles have reasonable expectations regarding their physical health, and strive to maintain a balanced diet and regular exercise. They also set reasonable goals and plan to achieve them. Some examples include being committed to not smoking for one day, having no alcohol or drug use for one year, and making sure to get 30 minutes of moderate exercise each day. This type of lifestyle is known as positive lifestyle, because it involves positive self-talk, instead of dwelling on negative things. In this way, people can keep their momentum high when they reach goals.
Lifestyle Aspects: Different people will have different perspectives regarding what lifestyle is important. Most agree, however, that it includes aspects such as fitness, nutrition, stress management, social interaction, and environmental quality. These are the three main elements of modern lifestyles that people want to improve, including aspects such as personal productivity, financial planning, social connections, balance in work/home life, and time spent with loved ones. While these are all important lifestyle elements, there are many other smaller aspects that improve quality of life, and are included in modern lifestyles.
Many people are confused between the terms “lifestyle” and “healthy lifestyle.” To avoid confusion, understanding the difference is simple. A lifestyle, as the word suggests, is a pattern of behavior that one follows on a daily basis. In the case of a healthy lifestyle, this means leading a balanced life, which may include a diet rich in fruits and vegetables, regular exercise, and avoiding tobacco use. Lifestyle, on the other hand, is the specific actions that one takes in order to lead a healthy lifestyle.
While these are the two most common forms of lifestyle, some refer to a combination of both or a healthy living style. When comparing and contrasting lifestyle styles, it is important to consider factors such as alcohol and drug use, smoking, and consumption of other high-risk activities. In addition, some forms of unhealthy behaviors are not considered a lifestyle choice, such as being overweight or engaged in high-risk sexual behaviors. The best definition for a balanced life is a healthy combination of all lifestyle elements including good nutritional and exercise habits, balanced work/home life balance, and avoiding high-risk activities.