This manual presents a systematic way to elicit and interpret life style. The definition of life style used is one proposed by Adler that views the life style of any individual as a singular pattern of thinking, feeling, and acting that is unique to that individual and that represents the context in which all specific manifestations have to be considered.
Chapter 1 describes life style, presenting a biological overview of why life style develops; examining factors that influence life style; defining a variety of functions of the life style; and describing distorted perceptions in the life style. Chapter 2 focuses on elements of the family constellation, paying particular attention to the sibling constellation, family values and their effects on sibling traits, the family atmosphere, parental behaviors, and the family role played by each child. Chapter 3 focuses on early recollections, identifying characteristics and explaining the diagnostic significance of these recollections. Chapter 4 deals with data collection. Chapter 5 returns to the issue of the family constellation, this time examining the process and content of interpretation. Chapter 6 returns to the subject of early recollections to point out pertinent issues in interpreting early recollections. Chapter 7 provides an example of a life style assessment and chapter 8 delineates a place for life style assessment within the general area of assessment. A bibliography is included.