A SENSE-ble Look at Healthy Living: Equilibrioception

A sense of balance or equilibrioception is important for many reasons. I know just how important it is when I get up too fast or turn around too quickly. That feeling of dizziness, nausea and losing control is difficult to manage.

merry go round

Dolly Parton once said, “Never get so busy making a living that you forget to make a life.” Life can be hectic. It’s all right to slow down and enjoy the ride. I remind myself of this when things seem to get out of control.

I find it’s easier to move forward or attend to a task if I have a stable condition and both feet planted firmly on the ground. The degree of constantly maintaining equilibrium is difficult. All eighteen senses need to work in concert to achieve equilibrioception. All the pieces of life need to come together. This may be why phrases such as “slow and steady wins the race,” “use a balanced approach,” “the balance of power,” “I need to balance my checkbook” and yes, “eat a healthy, balanced diet” are so popular.

The sense of equilibrioception in humans is very complex; however, we really don’t give it much thought. It does go along with proprioception, previously discussed. No matter what causes compromising this sense, the ability to function diminishes greatly. I’ve never had vertigo, but I do know family and friends with this condition. It not only upsets their personal balance but also the balance of their daily activities.

Losing control of the balance of my daily or weekly activities — such as meal planning, increasing my physical activity and getting proper rest — shows up immediately on the scale. You might say my weight “spins” out of control. It’s the one thing I struggle with: achieving a healthy balance of what I need to do. When my life starts to spin out of control, the easiest thing to do to stop the spinning is to grab onto the refrigerator handle.

When I do feel that my life is a merry-go-round, I remind myself that it’s all right to take a moment to stop, get off and plant my feet on the ground. I need to stop the spin and find my inner balance.


This is part 5 of the multipart series, “A SENSE-ble Look at Healthy Living.” In my next blog, we’ll look to the human sense of touch.

Missed the beginning of our journey through the human senses? Check out the rest of A SENSE-ble Look at Healthy Living.


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