Tension could refer to a physical or mental state of an individual. When related to the state of mind, the word tension usually refers to stress, a term used for a temporary inability to respond in an appropriate way to various stimuli, triggered by overexertion and mental as well as physical exhaustion. In physical terms, tension refers to a contraction of a muscle or a group of muscles, usually the result of physical exhaustion. Muscular tension and body ache may also be a symptom of stress. Other symptoms of tension include fatigue, irritability, depression, headaches, increased heart rate and a fall in concentration levels. Stress or tension is the cause of numerous disorders, as it tends to take a toll on the overall functioning of the body and should be brought under control.
A fixed routine with a healthy balance of good eating habits, work, rest and exercise plays a crucial role in eliminating stress or tension. A healthy balanced diet and regular meal times will ensure that the body has enough nourishment to keep it in good health. Overexertion tends to cause a strain on the body and should be avoided. Attempting to complete work in excess of what the body is capable of doing is also detrimental to the smooth functioning of the body leading to undue strain. Long work hours should be avoided. Most routines lack recreation time which is necessary to divert the mind and keep it from getting saturated. A hobby, a night out with family or friends or an occasional holiday is recommended, as these activities help in getting rid of a monotonous, taxing routine. Sleep is also significant as it is during this time that the body rejuvenates, mentally as well as physically. Sufficient sleep ensures that the body and mind are fresh, thus increasing the ability of an individual to function effectively without increased strain. Before going to sleep, a hot bath with a few drops of lavender oil added to bath water will help in relieving stress. Lavender is an excellent relaxant that promotes restful sleep. Meditation, yoga, Tai Chi and deep breathing exercises are beneficial in lowering stress levels. While on the job, taking a few minutes off to just breathe deeply will go a long way in reducing tension and keeping your body and mind relaxed. Regular exercise is essential to keep the body fit and flexible while increasing endurance. Exercise also aids building lean muscle, while assisting in the loss of excess weight.