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Women Living Well - 2004

Student Papers

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Balance in Bryn Mawr?

Suhali Kundu

According to The Webster's dictionary the definition of balance is mental or emotional stability, a condition in which different elements are equal or in the correct proportions. (Webster 84). Balance to me is finding a common ground between work and play. It is being in a state of comfort where stress is minimal and all the aspects of life have been taken into perspective for it not to disrupt the state of equilibrium within the body. One of the hardest places to achieve balance is within a college environment. College is the last stepping stone before the reality of life hits, it is a community where being stress is the norm and being without balance is expected.

Achieving balance has many different aspects. Balance requires for the mind to be in positive mental state. According to Professor Cassidy, when in a positive mental state a person is able to focus more, comprehend better and is generally happy his/her life. This is essential to have because this forces you to be motivated by yourself. And this also helps with differentiating between positive and negative stress. Dr. Regie Jones states that stress is an essential part of life, but not all types of stress are good for us and our bodies. There is positive and negative stress, both of which help in achieving balance.

Positive stress helps to motivate by allowing us to look forward to something. Negative stress also helps with motivation because it helps us finish something that we started, but it also allows us to weigh out what is absolutely essential in our lives and which is not. For example for finals week getting the exams that are hard out of the way is a lot easier than waiting to the end because then the stress would be less while taking the easy exams. This way we weighed out the fact that it is most likely easier to take the easy test later because they do not require as much thought as the hard ones. Both of these allow us to achieve balance and have a happier life.

The other thing that helps with achieving balance is giving your time to 'play'. For example exercising, this is a perfect way to get rid of excess energy, stress, also to clear your mind of trivial information. As Coach Law said exercising releases certain hormones, which allows us to think more clearly, make us more observant and more relaxed. If your physical fitness is maintained than it is a lot easier to achieve balance in your hectic college life. In college especially in Bryn Mawr, it is hard to maintain your physical well being because along with the other work it seems impossible to exercise.

I do believe that a person can live a balanced life in Bryn Mawr. Whether it is, through exercise or finishing easy exams first, a person should make it a point to make themselves happy. Although balance is finding a common ground with all aspects of life, nothing can be done unless that person is happy with himself/herself. Also achieving balance can be possible if life is taken with perspective, seeing life as it is and accepting each obstacle with a stride. When a person does this than he or she is able to divide the stress that comes along with the obstacle into little bits, making it easier to handle and deal with.

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