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Popular Articles

Crazy-Makers: Dealing with Passive-Aggressive People

Why Are People Mean? Don't Take It Personally!

When You Have Been Betrayed

Struggling to Forgive: An Inability to Grieve

Happy Habits: 50 Suggestions

The Secret of Happiness: Let It Find You (But Make the Effort)

Excellence vs. Perfection

Depression is Not Sadness

20 Steps to Better Self-Esteem

7 Rules and 8 Methods for Responding to Passive-aggressive People

What to Do When Your Jealousy Threatens to Destroy Your Marriage

Happiness is An Attitude

Guide to How to Set Achieveable Goals

Catastrophe? Or Inconvenience?

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Audio Version of Article: Crazy-Makers: Passive-Aggressive People

Audio Version of Article: Why Are People Mean? Don't Take It Personally!

Audio Version of Article: Happiness Is An Attitude

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PsychNotes Index

More PsychNotes: Pain Management

Tension: The Worst Thing for Pain
by Monica A. Frank, PhD

headache When people are in pain, they tend to tense around the area where they feel the pain. For instance, if a person has a headache, they tend to tense their forehead, neck, and shoulders. The idea is that if they keep the area rigid and don't move, somehow it will help alleviate the pain. What happens, then, is the intended behavior causes the opposite effect. Unfortunately, instead of a decrease in pain, the pain is intensified.

Therefore, to reduce pain you need to counter your body's natural inclination. Instead of tensing the area of pain, it is necessary to relax the area. This can be very difficult because you are fighting the body's tendency to tense.

However, with enough practice of the relaxation methods and finding the ones that are most effective for you, it is possible to reduce the pain. This doesn't mean that relaxation gets rid of pain, only that it helps manage the pain by counteracting the increased pain due to the tension.

Use Excel At Life's relaxation audios to help you improve your ability to relax.

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