This I Believe

Alyssa - Chardon, Ohio
Entered on May 1, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: peace, pleasure

As people slowly grow throughout life, physically and mentally, they strive to find a meaning or a key that unlocks the secret to a wonderful life. I believe that balance may be the term that underlies this struggle. I mean this in a broader sense than finding the mean of Aristotle’s virtues and I define it in more of a modern personal sense. Balance is not just important in an individual’s daily endeavors but it also is a huge part of the “big picture.”

As a kid growing up you learn to make decisions as you are faced with different situations and guided by role models and guardians. You learn right from wrong and slowly as you mature make your own decisions. Yet only you can truly know your own limit when it comes to choices that affect your life. I personally decided in my early teenage years to become very active in after school activities. By active I mean multiple clubs and this meant meeting almost every night and also outside activities. These things all managed to pile up while I had to maintain my school work and busy schedule. This lifestyle managed to take a huge toll on a lot of things in my life. I became stressed and my sleeping and eating habits were not healthy. I had to find the correct balance whether it meant dropping some activities or re-managing how I went about my schedule. Priorities was a word that came from my mother’s mouth frequently during those years.

Each day people are faced with decisions, whether it is simply which type of bagel to eat for breakfast or an important budget issue at their job. Each decision contributes in some way to their future. The food you eat will determine your health and your employment decisions determine your value within your job and thus your status in society. As a breaking point in our decision making process we must find a balance. Finding a middle ground where we have established a way of making our decisions or a moral code will allow the process for new decisions to become easier.

If an individual completely immerses himself in one decision, value, or part of life he is destined to lack in something else. So defining a balance in life allows those weak spots to disappear. It does not mean you can’t be adamant about something and pursue a specific goal. It simply means you must learn to take control of every part of your life and its decisions as you aim towards your future goals. Finding that balance is tricky, yet once you have established it, life seems to get simpler. It makes your decisions more concrete and will help you control life and the twists it throws at you.

Aristotle contemplated a happy life way back in the ancient Greek literature where he too looked for what creates happiness. His use of virtues helps to explain the happy person and also he uses a mean of all his listed virtues as the correct way of life. This mean is what I’m looking for in the terms of balance in life. Once you manage to find that fine line of balance in your life and apply it to your daily situations I believe you will find each time you are faced with a decision it will become easier. This will relieve a large amount of stress in people’s lives that will help attain goals possessed. It can be the key that may unlock the secret to my future happy life.