Home page Psychology blog Self-Development Self-Discipline Word spoken: getting rid of swearing and cussing

Word spoken: getting rid of swearing and cussing

05.04.2019 Author: Psychologist Pavel Khoroshutin

“A co-worker screwed up big time, and I cussed her, just a normal thing for me. Then my manager told me she heard everything. She said it was not the proper way to speak to a colleague. But that was not a big deal! Everyone cusses. And yet she got angry with me. I didn’t get my bonus, got stuck with the old project. It’s like I’m not welcome anymore. Do I really have to apologize? I speak the way I speak.”

– Vladimir, 39

Russian cussing is extremely widespread and bears many different names: swearing, strong language, profanity, taboo words. To some extent, it is an essential part to Russian language and culture. It can be seen even on birchbark manuscripts dating back to the XII century. However, cussing is often inappropriate, it poisons the speech and gives people a bad image. A person who cusses regularly cannot sometimes control themselves. They use strong language naturally, out of habit. And that is, indeed, a habit. People hear certain words, think with them, get used to them and start actively using such vocabulary. However, what happens when cussing becomes excessive?

Of course, that is no sin, and you will not burn in hell for that, so you don’t have to blame yourself day and night for an accidental “crap” and erase all swear words from your memory. We suggest you have a reality check of the role of cussing in our speech. Is it always necessary and appropriate? Can you be more expressive without it? Let’s talk about the perils of cussing and ways to do without it.


  1. Do you cuss too much?
  2. Reasons for cussing. Why do we even do this?
  3. Problems caused by cussing
  4. Getting rid of swearing and cussing

Do you cuss too much?

Do you cuss too much

The knowledge of swear words itself will not damage you or your health, but it can cause problems if it plays a big part in your speaking. Read the following statements and answer “yes” or “no”.

  1. I felt ashamed for cussing in front of people.
  2. I got in trouble for cussing or swearing, for example, had a fight because of it
  3. People got offended by my cussing.
  4. I use swear words to connect my speech, it is hard for me to speak without cussing.
  5. I cuss out of habit. Sometimes I notice my cussing only afterwards.
  6. Sometimes I refrain from speaking, because I cannot express myself without cussing.
  7. I feel impeded by my own cussing, I’d like to cuss less or stop doing it at all.

If you have answered “yes” to 2 or more statements, then cussing has likely become the cause for several problems in your life. Take a moment to think about cutting down the influence cussing has on your life.

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Reasons for cussing

Why do we even do this?

People, of course, cuss for a reason. Everyone has issues and problems that can be seemingly solved only by using swear words. However, more often than not cussing creates only the illusion of answer, not a solution to a problem.

You can choose the reasons you agree with and see for yourself if cussing really helps you.

I cuss because…In reality
All adults cuss, so when I cuss, I behave like an adultCussing is not a sign of adulthood. Even three year old can cuss. Adulthood and maturity are defined by actions, not proficiency in cussing
My friends speak that way. They understand me better when I cuss tooFriends can be accepting of your manner of speech, but not all social circles do so. If you are not willing to change your circle, you should at least learn to eliminate cussing from your speech and adapt to various situations
I express my emotions this wayYou should learn to express your emotions by various means, so that such expressions do not inconvenience you or other people
It is a habit; I do not control myself and my angerWe always respond to different situations out of habit. You can develop an ability to control your speech and stop using swear words even in emotional situations
Everyone in my family does thatYou don’t have to follow your relatives’ example. Choose a behavior pattern you need instead
I swear words to connect my speech, I cannot speak smoothly without cussing; sometimes it is the best way to express somethingIt is simply a sign that your speech became poor and expressionless.
Swearing can be good for eliminating pain. Anyone will cuss after dropping a hammer on their foot.Such data actually exist. However, there are also data that such effect can be seen only in people, who cuss little.
Cussing relieves stressThis is indeed possible, but such a way to reduce stress is not always appropriate. For example, you should better refrain from using it when defending your thesis. You should learn several ways to reduce stress, not just cussing
Even Shakespeare cussedShakespeare (like other writers who used profanity) had a perfect grasp of the whole language, not just cussing. If you can easily live without cussing, it is wonderful. If not, you should better aim for Shakespeare’s level not only in terms of cussing.
Cussing makes speech richer and more expressiveIf so, then you will have no trouble refraining from cussing when it is inappropriate. Unfortunately, cussing often makes the language poorer, replacing many words. For example, instead of saying “tired, exhausted, weary, on my last leg, dead on feet” and  many other synonyms a person can a single swear word.
All swearing is second language, we cannot do without itNo one tells you to forget this “second language”. It is relatively harmless, but can cause a lot of problems

Let’s not forget about situations where cussing is used to express aggression, to attack, humiliate and offend somebody. It doesn’t really matter what words a person uses to offend someone, swear or not. In such case we should pay attention to the reasons for aggression, rather than the use of cussing. We need to find out why a person decides to attack others, what are their goals in offending people around them etc.

Problems caused by cussing

Problems caused by cussing

1. Problems caused by cussing

If a person cusses often, swear words will eventually replace normal ones in their vocabulary. Using such succinct and expressive words will become much easier than thinking and coming up with new expressions. As the result, a person’s speech becomes an irregular and crumpled ranting full of cussing. A person struggles to express their thoughts and feelings, as they lack proper words.

2. Problems in social life

Speech full of profanities can create a negative image. Even though a lot of people cuss, most of them do this on occasion. Basically, society thinks that only uneducated people on the fringes cuss regularly.

3. Work problems

Inappropriate use of profanities can turn a manager and co-workers against a person. If the manner of speaking affects your relationships at work, you should better get rid of cussing.

4. Aggression issues

Cussing is often used to express aggression, so it is quite possible that the other person will be offended by it and decide to stand for themselves with their fists.

5. Administrative fines

For example, in Russia, cussing in public places is treated as petty crime and is punishable by a fine up to 2,500 rubles (37 USD) or 15 days arrest.

6. Limitations to online conversations

Many gaming communities, groups on social network and forums prohibit cussing, so the use of swear words can result in a ban, making a person deprived of interesting information.

Getting rid of swearing and cussing

Swearing and cussing are habits.

First of all, we recommend you to think which situations prompt the use of cussing, how often you struggle to express yourself without swear words. After that you can come up with replacements for profanities and constantly control yourself. Of course, it can be hard to diagnose the problem and get rid of cussing you your own, as it takes a lot of time.

Let’s teach the art of communication

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Our registered  7Spsy behavior modification technique is a method of behavioral therapy that can help you quit cussing quickly.

This course will help you master a new and healthy mode of behavior. After 2-6 weeks in 7Spsy behavior modification technique course you will get rid of this bad habit and start speaking without swearing. The classes are held remotely, you will not have to speak with a psychologist in person and spill your guts. However, our specialists will provide constant support throughout the duration of the course, answering your questions in online chats.

Choose the methods that suit you better and communicate freely, without letting profanities rule over you and your life.