Why people swear - Deepstash

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Why Do We Swear?

Why people swear

Swearing is used to signify a number of emotions, (e.g. anger, frustration, joy, surprise). It can be used to achieve a specific reaction from others. It can also be a useful substitute for physical violence.

Swear words can also be used in a more positive manner, in the form of jokes and humor, sex talk, storytelling, self-deprecation or even social commentary.

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Swear words
By definition, swear words are offensive. If a word, over time, ceases to be offensive, then it falls out of use as a swear word.

We will often use swear words to vent some emotion. Swearing also centers on taboos. Around the world, swear words will tend to cluster around certain topics: lavatorial matters, sex, religion.

Swearing benefits
  • Swearing helps mitigate pain.
  • Those who speak more than one language, report that swearing in their first language carries a bigger emotional punch.
  • A few blue words, uttered in a good-natured way, indicates and encourages intimacy.
  • A recent study suggests that people who swear are perceived as more trustworthy.
Swearing
Swearing is usually regarded as simply lazy language or an abusive lapse in civility.

New research reveals that profanity has many positive virtues, from promoting trust and teamwork in the office to increasing our tolerance to pain.

Swearing has an emotional impact

There’s great research coming out that says that jocular abuse, particularly swearing among friends, is a strong signal of the degree of trust that those friends share.

You’re demonstrating that you have a sophisticated theory of mind about the person that you’re talking to and that you understand their mental model.

Women swear just as much as men

Attitudinal surveys show that both men and women tend to judge women’s swearing much more harshly.

For example, when women with breast cancer or arthritis swear as a result of their condition, they’re much more likely to lose friends, particularly female friends. Whereas men who swear about conditions like testicular cancer tend to bond more closely with other men using the same vocabulary.

Pain management

A study done at Keele University in the U.K. measured the effects swearing had on pain tolerance. They found that we can withstand more pain when using profanity.

Swearing triggers the fight or flight response, which then gives us that burst of energy to make it through the difficult or painful task.

It improves your workout

One study found that participants who swore saw a 2 to 4 percent increase in performance and an 8 percent boost in strength compared to those who kept their mouths shut.

Cursing diverts your attention, which makes you work harder than if you were only focusing on how tough the workout is.

It releases stress

When we complain or vent without cursing, we are keeping ourselves in check and don't totally release all feelings.

Cursing can be an effective emotional release. Our whole body and all emotions are connected with no filter.