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Balance vs. Equilibrium: What's the Difference?

Edited by Sumera Saeed || By Sawaira Riaz || Updated on September 20, 2023
"Balance" refers to an even distribution of weight or elements, often requiring active maintenance, while "Equilibrium" refers to a state of stability where opposing forces are balanced, often self-sustaining.

Key Differences

"Balance" is a term that denotes an equal distribution or proportion of elements, whether it's in physical weight, emotional state, or various other contexts. "Equilibrium," on the other hand, implies a state of stability, often in systems, where all the variables are in balance.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 20, 2023
Grammatically, both "Balance" and "Equilibrium" function as nouns, but "Balance" can also be used as a verb meaning to bring or keep elements in harmony. In contrast, "Equilibrium" is predominantly a noun, not commonly used as a verb.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 20, 2023
"Balance" often requires active effort to maintain, as in balancing on a tightrope. "Equilibrium," however, generally refers to a self-sustaining state where no external effort is needed to maintain balance, such as in chemical reactions.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 20, 2023
"Balance" is a term commonly used in everyday language, applicable to various contexts including finance, emotion, and physicality. "Equilibrium" is more often employed in scientific or technical settings, to describe systems in a state of stability.
Aimie Carlson
Sep 20, 2023
Both "Balance" and "Equilibrium" signify a state of harmony or stability, but their usage varies in complexity. "Balance" is simpler and more versatile, while "Equilibrium" often involves a more complex set of variables or components.
Janet White
Sep 20, 2023
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Comparison Chart

Primary Application

Various contexts
Mostly scientific
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 20, 2023

Grammatical Role

Noun, Verb
Mainly Noun
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 20, 2023

Maintenance

Often requires active effort
Usually self-sustaining
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Sep 20, 2023

Common Contexts

Daily life, finance, emotion
Scientific, systems
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Sep 20, 2023

Complexity

Simpler and more versatile
More complex
Janet White
Sep 20, 2023
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Balance and Equilibrium Definitions

Balance

See Libra.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Equilibrium

Emotional stability
She finally found emotional equilibrium.
Janet White
Sep 20, 2023

Balance

A weighing device, especially one consisting of a rigid beam horizontally suspended by a low-friction support at its center, with identical weighing pans hung at either end, one of which holds an unknown weight while the effective weight in the other is increased by known amounts until the beam is level and motionless. Also called scale.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Equilibrium

Physical stability
The bridge was in perfect equilibrium.
Sara Rehman
Sep 20, 2023

Balance

A state of equilibrium or parity characterized by cancellation of all forces by equal opposing forces.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Equilibrium

Economic state
The market was in equilibrium.
Sara Rehman
Sep 20, 2023

Balance

The power or means to decide
Matters that fell outside the judge's balance.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Equilibrium

Biological homeostasis
The body maintains a delicate equilibrium.
Janet White
Sep 20, 2023

Balance

A state of bodily equilibrium
Thrown off balance by a gust of wind.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Equilibrium

A condition in which all acting influences are canceled by others, resulting in a stable, balanced, or unchanging system.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

The ability to maintain bodily equilibrium
Gymnasts must have good balance.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Equilibrium

Mental or emotional balance.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

A harmonious or satisfying arrangement or proportion of parts or elements, as in a design.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Equilibrium

(Physics) The state of a body or physical system at rest or in unaccelerated motion in which the resultant of all forces acting on it is zero and the sum of all torques about any axis is zero.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

An influence or force tending to produce equilibrium; counterpoise.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Equilibrium

The state of a chemical reaction in which its forward and reverse reactions occur at equal rates so that the concentration of the reactants and products does not change with time.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

The difference in magnitude between opposing forces or influences.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Equilibrium

The state of a system in which more than one phase exists and exchange between phases occurs at equal rates so that there is no net change in the composition of the system.
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Apr 24, 2023

Balance

Equality of totals in the debit and credit sides of an account.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Equilibrium

The condition of a system in which competing influences are balanced, resulting in no net change.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

The difference between such totals, either on the credit or the debit side.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Equilibrium

Mental balance.
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Apr 24, 2023

Balance

Something that is left over; a remainder.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Equilibrium

(chemistry) The state of a reaction in which the rates of the forward and reverse reactions are the same.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

(Chemistry) Equality of mass and net electric charge of reacting species on each side of an equation.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Equilibrium

(physics) The state of a body at rest or in uniform motion in which the resultant of all forces on it is zero.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

(Mathematics) Equality with respect to the net number of reduced symbolic quantities on each side of an equation.
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Apr 24, 2023

Equilibrium

Equality of weight or force; an equipoise or a state of rest produced by the mutual counteraction of two or more forces.
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Apr 24, 2023

Balance

A balance wheel.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Equilibrium

A level position; a just poise or balance in respect to an object, so that it remains firm; equipoise; as, to preserve the equilibrium of the body.
Health consists in the equilibrium between those two powers.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

To determine the weight of (something) in a weighing device.
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Apr 24, 2023

Equilibrium

A balancing of the mind between motives or reasons, with consequent indecision and doubt.
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Apr 24, 2023

Balance

To consider and compare or assess
Balanced the pros and cons before making a choice.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Equilibrium

A chemical reaction and its reverse proceed at equal rates
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Apr 24, 2023

Balance

To bring into or maintain in a state of equilibrium.
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Apr 24, 2023

Equilibrium

A stable situation in which forces cancel one another
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Apr 24, 2023

Balance

To act as an equalizing weight or force to; counterbalance.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Equilibrium

Equality of distribution
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

To compute the difference between the debits and credits of (an account).
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Equilibrium

A sensory system located in structures of the inner ear that registers the orientation of the head
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

To reconcile or equalize the sums of the debits and credits of (an account).
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Equilibrium

Chemical state
The reaction reached equilibrium.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 20, 2023

Balance

To settle (an account, for example) by paying what is owed.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

To bring into or keep in equal or satisfying proportion or harmony.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

Mathematics & Chemistry To bring (an equation) into balance.
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Apr 24, 2023

Balance

To move toward and then away from (a dance partner).
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Apr 24, 2023

Balance

To be in or come into equilibrium.
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Apr 24, 2023

Balance

To be equal or equivalent.
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Apr 24, 2023

Balance

To sway or waver as if losing or regaining equilibrium.
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Apr 24, 2023

Balance

To move toward and then away from a dance partner.
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Apr 24, 2023

Balance

(uncountable) A state in which opposing forces harmonise; equilibrium.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

(uncountable) Mental equilibrium; mental health; calmness, a state of remaining clear-headed and unperturbed.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

Something of equal weight used to provide equilibrium; counterweight.
These weights are used as a balance for the overhanging verandah
Blair thought he could provide a useful balance to Bush's policies.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

A pair of scales.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

(uncountable) Awareness of both viewpoints or matters; neutrality; rationality; objectivity.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

(uncountable) The overall result of conflicting forces, opinions etc.; the influence which ultimately "weighs" more than others.
The balance of power finally lay with the Royalist forces.
I think the balance of opinion is that we should get out while we're ahead.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

(uncountable) Apparent harmony in art (between differing colours, sounds, etc.).
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

(accounting) A list accounting for the debits on one side, and for the credits on the other.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

(accounting) The result of such a procedure; the difference between credit and debit of an account.
I just need to nip to a bank and check my balance.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

(watchmaking) A device used to regulate the speed of a watch, clock etc.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

The remainder.
The balance of the agreement remains in effect.
The invoice said he had only paid $50. The balance was $220.
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Apr 24, 2023

Balance

Libra.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

(transitive) To bring (items) to an equipoise, as the scales of a balance by adjusting the weights.
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Apr 24, 2023

Balance

To make (concepts) agree.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

(transitive) To hold (an object or objects) precariously; to support on a narrow base, so as to keep from falling.
I balanced my mug of coffee on my knee.
The circus performer balances a plate on the end of a baton.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

(transitive) To compare in relative force, importance, value, etc.; to estimate.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

To move toward, and then back from, reciprocally.
To balance partners
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Apr 24, 2023

Balance

(nautical) To contract, as a sail, into a narrower compass.
To balance the boom mainsail
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

(transitive) To make the credits and debits of (an account) correspond.
This final payment, or credit, balances the account.
To balance a set of books
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

(intransitive) To be in equilibrium.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

(intransitive) To have matching credits and debits.
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Apr 24, 2023

Balance

To weigh in a balance.
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Apr 24, 2023

Balance

To hesitate or fluctuate.
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Apr 24, 2023

Balance

An apparatus for weighing.
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Apr 24, 2023

Balance

Act of weighing mentally; comparison; estimate.
A fair balance of the advantages on either side.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

Equipoise between the weights in opposite scales.
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Apr 24, 2023

Balance

The state of being in equipoise; equilibrium; even adjustment; steadiness.
And hung a bottle on each sideTo make his balance true.
The order and balance of the country were destroyed.
English workmen completely lose their balance.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

An equality between the sums total of the two sides of an account; as, to bring one's accounts to a balance; - also, the excess on either side; as, the balance of an account.
I still think the balance of probabilities leans towards the account given in the text.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

A balance wheel, as of a watch, or clock. See Balance wheel (in the Vocabulary).
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

The constellation Libra.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

To bring to an equipoise, as the scales of a balance by adjusting the weights; to weigh in a balance.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

To support on a narrow base, so as to keep from falling; as, to balance a plate on the end of a cane; to balance one's self on a tight rope.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

To equal in number, weight, force, or proportion; to counterpoise, counterbalance, counteract, or neutralize.
One expression . . . must check and balance another.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

To compare in relative force, importance, value, etc.; to estimate.
Balance the good and evil of things.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

To settle and adjust, as an account; to make two accounts equal by paying the difference between them.
I am very well satisfied that it is not in my power to balance accounts with my Maker.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

To make the sums of the debits and credits of an account equal; - said of an item; as, this payment, or credit, balances the account.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

To arrange accounts in such a way that the sum total of the debits is equal to the sum total of the credits; as, to balance a set of books.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

To move toward, and then back from, reciprocally; as, to balance partners.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

To contract, as a sail, into a narrower compass; as, to balance the boom mainsail.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

To have equal weight on each side; to be in equipoise; as, the scales balance.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

To fluctuate between motives which appear of equal force; to waver; to hesitate.
He would not balance or err in the determination of his choice.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

To move toward a person or couple, and then back.
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

A state of equilibrium
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

A scale for weighing; depends on pull of gravity
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Apr 24, 2023

Balance

Equality between the totals of the credit and debit sides of an account
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

Harmonious arrangement or relation of parts or elements within a whole (as in a design);
In all perfectly beautiful objects there is found the opposition of one part to another and a reciprocal balance
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

Equality of distribution
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Apr 24, 2023

Balance

Something left after other parts have been taken away;
There was no remainder
He threw away the rest
He took what he wanted and I got the balance
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

The difference between the totals of the credit and debit sides of an account
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Apr 24, 2023

Balance

(astrology) a person who is born while the sun in in Libra
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Apr 24, 2023

Balance

The seventh sign of the zodiac; the sun is in this sign from about September 23 to October 22
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

(mathematics) an attribute of a shape or relation; exact correspondence of form on opposite sides of a dividing line or plane
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Apr 24, 2023

Balance

An equivalent counterbalancing weight
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Apr 24, 2023

Balance

A wheel that regulates the rate of movement in a machine; especially a wheel oscillating against the hairspring of a timepiece to regulate its beat
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Apr 24, 2023

Balance

Bring into balance or equilibrium;
She has to balance work and her domestic duties
Balance the two weights
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Apr 24, 2023

Balance

Compute credits and debits of an account
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Apr 24, 2023

Balance

Hold or carry in equilibrium
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Apr 24, 2023

Balance

Be in equilibrium;
He was balancing on one foot
Sawaira Riaz
Apr 24, 2023

Balance

Equal distribution
The balance of the load kept the boat afloat.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 20, 2023

Balance

Financial stability
Her bank balance was impressive.
Aimie Carlson
Sep 20, 2023

Balance

Emotional stability
He struggled to find balance in life.
Janet White
Sep 20, 2023

Balance

Physical stability
She showed great balance on the beam.
Harlon Moss
Sep 20, 2023

Balance

Harmony of elements
The room had a good balance of colors.
Sara Rehman
Sep 20, 2023

FAQs

Is "Equilibrium" a noun or a verb?

It's mainly a noun.
Janet White
Sep 20, 2023

What is "Equilibrium"?

It refers to a stable state where opposing elements are balanced.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 20, 2023

Is "Balance" a noun or a verb?

It's both a noun and a verb.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 20, 2023

Does "Equilibrium" require active maintenance?

Usually, no.
Harlon Moss
Sep 20, 2023

What is "Balance"?

It refers to an even distribution of elements in various contexts.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 20, 2023

Is "Equilibrium" commonly used in daily life?

It's mostly used in scientific or technical contexts.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 20, 2023

Does "Balance" require active maintenance?

Often, yes.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 20, 2023

Is "Balance" commonly used in scientific contexts?

It's used in both scientific and everyday contexts.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 20, 2023

Is "Balance" a simpler term?

Generally, yes.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 20, 2023

Is "Equilibrium" a more complex term?

Generally, yes.
Harlon Moss
Sep 20, 2023

Can "Balance" be used in financial contexts?

Yes, it can.
Janet White
Sep 20, 2023

Can "Balance" refer to emotional stability?

Yes, it can.
Aimie Carlson
Sep 20, 2023

Can "Equilibrium" refer to emotional stability?

Yes, but it's less common.
Sara Rehman
Sep 20, 2023

Are "Balance" and "Equilibrium" synonyms?

They are similar but not exact synonyms.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 20, 2023

Can "Equilibrium" be used in economic contexts?

Yes, it's often used to describe market states.
Sawaira Riaz
Sep 20, 2023
About Author
Written by
Sawaira Riaz
Sawaira is a dedicated content editor at difference.wiki, where she meticulously refines articles to ensure clarity and accuracy. With a keen eye for detail, she upholds the site's commitment to delivering insightful and precise content.
Edited by
Sumera Saeed
Sumera is an experienced content writer and editor with a niche in comparative analysis. At Diffeence Wiki, she crafts clear and unbiased comparisons to guide readers in making informed decisions. With a dedication to thorough research and quality, Sumera's work stands out in the digital realm. Off the clock, she enjoys reading and exploring diverse cultures.

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