When you build up tension in your body it is important to release it in a conscious way. If it isn't released then it will find its way out regardless, and generally when you aren't looking.
It is like a pressurised boiler.
The tension builds and builds, the sides start to bulge and eventually nuts and bolts start flying off and jets of steam start hissing out!
Instead of letting steam off in a controlled way, you've ignored it until its found its own way out.
This principle applies as much to human beings as it does to boilers!
We can see it in action on the roads. When a car driver gets stuck behind a cyclist and has to slow down to a crawl, he may begin to build up tension. The more he has to trail behind the cyclist - who is going a snails pace compared to what he is used to - the more his boiler begins to fill up. And when he finally gets past he may be just about ready to blow!
He may let this pressure off by cursing the driver or putting his foot to the floor and speeding away, leaving the cyclist to eat his exhaust fumes. But there is a chance that some of this tension could stay with him.
And then it begins to find its way out in all sorts of unfortunate ways.
Maybe the next cyclist he comes to he isn't so courteous with. Maybe his pent up anger and frustration makes him a bit reckless. Perhaps he gets a bit too close to this next cyclist. Maybe he even clips him by accident with his wing mirror.
Or he may not come across another cyclist. Phew! He speeds up and makes it home in record time! But he finds the kids even more irritable than normal tonight. He is short with his wife.
Tension always finds its way out.
The question is whether you are going to be in control of its release, or whether you're going to let it do its own thing.
And if you're a cyclist then its worth bearing this principle in mind too.
You may have stuck to your guns and exercised your right to be on the road, annoying who knows how many motorists in the meantime. And you may have even got away with it unscathed. But the next cyclist may just well be paying the price for your actions.
Be considerate. If there is someone behind you and they are aching to get past - and you can tell when they are - then don't be afraid to pull over and let them be on their way.
The communal gains from this considerate act are far greater than any personal losses.
(And this comes from a cyclist by the way!)