Swearing is defined as the use of offensive or vulgar words in the dictionary. In this article, we will discover some reasons not to swear and how to avoid this habit quickly.
Why is Cursing Considered Bad?
Curse words typically come from subjects that are prohibited or off-limits. They offend people by crossing a cultural line and entering a taboo area.
There are several types of curse words:
- Profanities associated with religion are meant to evoke awe and fear.
- Curse words about bodily discharge and organs to evoke disgust.
- Curse words related to disease, death, and ailment evoke a dread.
- Swear words regarding sexuality are meant to create repulsion and depravity.
- Swear words meant to incite hatred and disdain for marginalized persons and groups.
What is the psychology of swearing and foul language?
Business Insider reported in 2021 that an average American swears 80 to 90 times daily.
What about swearing makes it so appealing to people despite it being obscene?
According to a 2009 review by Professor Timothy Jay of Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts, we begin speaking with curse words as soon as we learn to speak. We continue to use curse words until we age, even when suffering from dementia and senile decline. This was attributed to swear words’ distinctiveness and ability to help us express our feelings or emotions, thus grabbing our attention and helping us remember them. Jay also suggested that humans evolved to use curse words as a survival strategy because curse words allow us to strengthen our communication effectively.
Science has shown several health benefits, which proves why swearing should be allowed:
Cursing activates a part of our brain, the amygdala, responsible for regulating our emotions. Amygdala, in turn, activates the fight or flight response, leading to an adrenaline surge that relieves pain.
Decreases likelihood of violence
Swearing acts as a healthier outlet to release our anger and allows us to get back at bad people or situations without resorting to traditional violence or something more scary or dangerous.
Helps us bond with each other
Swearing makes you look more honest, dependable, and enjoyable. When done in the right company, swearing can also make you seem more approachable and genuine, making it easier to forge new friendships. It also creates a sense of solidarity among people working together, even when they are not necessarily close friends, whereas swear words also act like terms of endearment among friends.
Cursing also confers a cathartic effect on your mental health. It serves as an outlet for stress release in challenging situations. Studies have shown that when people are placed in difficult situations and instructed not to swear, their stress level increases significantly.
Swearing also leads to increased circulation, elevated endorphin, and serotonin secretions and promotes a feeling of calm and control.
Swearing is a sign of intelligence
It was shown in a 2015 study by psychologists at Marist College that people fluent in swearing also tend to be verbally fluent, disproving the long-held belief that swearing is a sign of low intelligence.
People fluent in swearing know how to communicate more effectively using swear words in various contexts.
Unfortunately, the benefits of swearing only work for people who swear occasionally.
Here Are Some Reasons Not to Swear
According to neuroscientists, our brains are constantly rewiring themselves; that is to say, a neural pathway is stimulated every time you take action, making you more prepared to repeat it the next time, and so on.
These links impact the overall, not just one particular region. We start to think in a specific way as we act in a certain way, and vice versa. As a result, the more vulgar our speech and thoughts are, the more vulgar our behavior and attitude are. This is also said to be why the modern world has become more tolerant of profanity as our culture has become more polarised and unstable.
Using offensive words to communicate your feelings is not as effective as you think. In most cases, it just lets people know you are upset or angry. It makes you look impolite and makes people unwilling to want to interact with you.
In formal settings such as workplaces and schools, intermingling your words with swear words can lessen the credibility of your speech. Some of your audience may feel uncomfortable, whereas others may accuse you of trying too hard or being too dramatic.
It angers people
Swear words can make people feel humiliated and insulted, provoking them to be defensive and act violently. People usually respond by yelling or cursing you back, escalating a casual conversation into a fight, and creating unnecessary hostility among people.
Inappropriate for children
When swearing becomes a habit, people no longer refrain from using swear words even in settings where they should not, intentionally or unintentionally, such as in front of their children. It can teach them to be impolite. It can also let them view swearing as the most convenient outlet for releasing emotions when better outlets are available.
Children may also become exposed to racial, gender, and religious slurs that can become a significant problem. They may not understand the meaning of the slurs. Still, they might use them in front of peers who belong to a marginalized community, leading to the marginalized children suffering from anxiety, stress, and depression.
Swearing and poor vocabulary go hand in hand. It is also widely believed that people who swear do not know how to express themselves or have a weaker grasp of the language. It makes them look unintelligent.
How can you stop swearing?
Swearing can get a little out of hand and begin to cause you problems at work, or at home where young children pick up new words very fast and repeat it nonstop.
You are probably considering how to put an end to this problem, but finding it difficult to do so because swearing can be a tough habit to break, especially owing to its many health benefits.
But here are some of the ways you can stop swearing:
Get help from a friend.
Get your friend, spouse, or family member involved in your journey to stop swearing by asking them to hold you accountable whenever you utter an expletive. Have them call your attention to any instances in which you use foul language. You might not be able to be so impartial to yourself. Every time you use a swear term, they might clap, scream out a code word, or otherwise make noise. The more you become aware of your speaking habits, the simpler it will be to alter them. If your friend or family member also suffers from a foul mouth, ask them to join you in this endeavor. This will make the whole process much more fun.
Find out what triggers you to swear.
The desire to swear is induced by different triggers in different people. Try to identify what it is that stimulates your brain to make your mouth go full bonkers. For some, it’s a long queue at the McDonald’s drive-thru, getting stuck in traffic, or Netflix taking down another one of their favorite shows. Look for alternatives that help you avoid these triggers. Consider ordering McDonald’s online, leave your home early and pick a different route to your destination, and as for Netflix, maybe subscribe to other streaming websites.
Use a swear jar.
Using a swear jar is probably the most effective way to end swearing because it pinches you square in the wallet. Take a fresh 1 dollar and put it in the jar every time you curse. Set a goal for yourself, like going one week without swearing, and use the swear jar to record your progress. A swear jar works as both a punishment and a delayed reward because every time you fail to restrain yourself from cursing, you lose money. Whereas, once the jar is full, you can use that money to treat yourself to a pleasant reward once you’ve achieved your objective.
Act as if your grandmother is listening to you.
If your grandmother swears like a pirate, this approach might not work for you. Nevertheless, it’s useful to consider a person you wouldn’t want to upset with with your foul words, whether it be your strict aunt, the father of your local church, or the young members of your family. Imagine this individual as your couch neighbor the next time you feel like cursing Eddie Munson’s death at Stranger Things season 4 rewatch.
In conclusion, yes, swearing is cathartic! But there’s no point to it since excessive use of expletives is not going to let you enjoy any of those benefits. On the contrary, being a foul-mouth is going to cause you more harm than good, if you don’t watch yourself. Instead, consider giving yourself a break and work on getting rid of this habit.
Why should we avoid swearing?
Excessive swearing makes communication difficult to comprehend. It only makes you look irrational, overly emotional, and upset. Your words lose their credibility, and people eventually dismiss you.
Why is it bad to say a swear word?
Swear words tend to originate from topics that are off-limits, and cross a line into taboo subjects. Such topics can be offensive to members of a particular demographic.
Can swear words cause harm?
Swear words can frequently take the form of verbal abuse, racial and ethnic slurs that hurt the sentiments of people belonging to marginalized communities, and sometimes be viewed as hate crimes against them.
Are swear words inappropriate?
Swear words are considered impolite, obscene, and vulgar. They are not appropriate to say.
Why do you not swear?
Swear words are considered rude and vulgar and not fit for the polite company or formal setting. It makes you look overly enthusiastic and short-tempered, shunning people away from you.
Why do people swear so much?
People swear so much because it helps them express themselves, releases stress, and gives them a sense of community with the people around them.