Getting my bearings: Balance is key to sanity

Balance: A seven-letter word that means to keep something in steady position so it does not fall. We typically think of the word “balance” in the context of science where you are balancing weights and objects or in terms of math where we are balancing equations. We might even think about balance when it’s Wing Wednesday at Penland and we are trying to balance numerous plates of different types of wings on the way to find a table. But what does balance mean in the great scheme of life?

That’s, of course, the real question — the one most of us have yet to figure out.

Up until this year, I have never struggled with keeping my life balanced. I made all A’s in my classes and always seemed to have enough time to study. I had plenty of time for friends, and I always had the time to participate in every activity I enjoyed.

I figured as long as I made time to do the things that were important to me, everything would just fall into place and work out the way it was supposed to.

Well, needless to say, life threw a curveball.

I was excited to begin my sophomore year of college with new classes, a new job and to pick back up with all the amazing friendships I formed. However, I was not expecting the challenges this year would bring.

While the first half of this semester has been amazing and has afforded me many incredible opportunities, I never really had that feeling I was on the top of my game. Instead, I felt like I was drowning in 17 hours of coursework, the new job that has kept me constantly busy and on my feet, and, of course, Pigskin practices and activities with friends.

I was doing everything I absolutely wanted to do and was excited about, but I just wasn’t feeling fulfilled. I knew something in my life needed to change because I never felt like I had any time to really focus on what I needed to. I always felt too busy.

I wasn’t sure what I needed to cut from my life because I couldn’t cut classes or my job from the equation. I absolutely refused to cut out my time doing Pigskin and being with my friends since those were the parts of my day that left me the happiest and helped relieve stress, but I was at a loss of what to do.

I was struggling to find any sort of balance in life, and instead of being in a steady position, I felt like I was falling.

The other night, I decided to make a change, a small one, but a change with a big impact. I went to one of the little chapels on campus and decided to spend some time in God’s Word. I left my phone behind and cleared my mind of all distractions and just sat in the Lord’s presence and really dove into His word. As simple as this sounds, it was something I never normally do because I always feel like I just didn’t have time during the week.

I was only in the chapel for about 15 to 20 minutes, but that time really gave me a chance to clear my head and refocus my priorities. It was a nice reminder to seek Him when we need strength and to keep Him at the center of our lives.

The crazy thing was how incredible of a reminder it was. The next day, I felt like I found that balance again, keeping God at the center of my focus. Things just seemed to fall back into place, and instead of feeling like I was drowning, I managed to accomplish everything I needed to with ease.

I felt like I finally found a steady position in my life again, even though nothing else changed.

As we seek balance, that steady position that prevents us from falling, it is important to remember to always keep our priorities straight. College is a challenging time, but it is important to remember to not get wrapped up in the small things, and to focus on the strength and grace of God in the great scheme of life. Only He will prevent us from falling.

Jessica Babb is a sophomore from Harker Heights. She is the Broadcast News Producer for the Lariat.