You have an important appointment, but you can’t find your damn key. In a hurry, you run around the apartment and bump your toes full force against the leg of the table. SCHEI**E it hurts! As soon as you find the damn key, get in the damn car and drive off. When you reach your destination, the stupid idiot grabs the last parking space before you. You have to park on the other side of the world and you’re too late!
7 tips that immediately make you more relaxed
A scenario that looks familiar to you in one way or another? In such stressful situations do swear words dominate your vocabulary? That’s a good thing! Dr. Udo Baer, certified pedagogue, therapist and author of the book “Der kleine Ärger und die große Wut ” (Beltz Verlag, 15 Euro at amazon.de), explains why cursing can be good for your health.
Why do people curse?
“Swearing serves as a valve to release pent-up negative emotions. It’s like a steaming boiler: At some point the pressure has to come out. Cursing is very good for relieving your psyche – just like anything else that lets your emotions out from the inside,” explains the expert. By verbalizing negative feelings, you don’t swallow your anger but reduce stress. These are psychological consequences that you can feel immediately. But on a physical level, your body also benefits from cursing.
Cursing while driving is especially popular because your counterpart cannot hear you. © Pathdoc /Shutterstock
What are the health consequences of suppressed feelings?
If negative feelings build up inside you and are not let out, this will cause permanent discomfort – you may even fall seriously ill physically. “If you suppress your feelings, the probability of high blood pressure, inflammation and stomach ulcers increases demonstrably,” warns Baer. These effects need not occur immediately, they develop in a creeping process.
5 quick relaxation exercises
What happens in the brain when I curse?
“If you get angry, an excitation is built up in the brain, which is suddenly discharged by the expression of force. This happens in the limbic system, i.e. the brain area for emotional impulses,” explains Baer. You can think of it as something like a lightning strike. First, tension is created in a thundercloud. This is then suddenly discharged by lightning. If you are angry, this affects the entire body.
“When you’re angry, your blood pressure rises and then falls again after you swear,” says the expert.
Is it true that swearing relieves pain?
In a neurological study at Keele University in England, scientists found that curses can actually relieve pain. In one test, test persons were divided into 2 groups and had to put their hands in ice water. One group was allowed to curse extensively, the other group was not allowed to do so. The result: test persons who used swearing could keep their hands in the ice water longer and subjectively felt less pain. “The result of this study is easy to understand.
When you feel pain, you tense up, and when you are very tense, two things help: Crying and swearing,” said Baer.
Is there a right measure for swearing?
“When cursing, there are no general guidelines, because cursing expresses emotions”, says Baer, “There is no right measure for love or fear. In some life situations, however, it is not socially accepted to curse, for example in a job interview. Baer: “So make sure that cursing does not become a bad everyday habit that you cannot get rid of. If you constantly scold and annoy yourself about everything, it can become a burden.” And not just for you, but for the people around you.
You don’t want to sit next to someone who swears all the time, do you? If you notice that too many curse words are interfering with your social relationships, you should lower your sights.
By the way, it is a myth that people who curse a lot are more intelligent, because cursing is an expression of feelings and not of intelligence.
This is how you recognize mental exhaustion In case of problems with friends or family, a clarifying conversation is definitely more appropriate than uncontrolled cursing © antoniodiaz/ Shutterstock
What happens if I insult a person?
There is the crucial difference between cursing and insulting: If you bump your toe on a table leg and scold angrily, don’t insult anyone. Swearing is also okay when driving a car, because the person in the other car will (hopefully) not hear you. This fits the nature of cursing: it helps especially if you can’t change anything about the actual situation.
Mostly people curse about people only when they are not present. Admit it: After a visit from your mother-in-law, you only get upset about her loudly after she has left the house. When she is sitting at the table, you usually behave in a civilised and polite manner. That’s perfectly fine, it’s all about social acceptability. If everyone always honestly told (or screamed) what they thought about her to everyone else’s face, soon hardly anyone would have friends and relationships.
However, if you keep swallowing your anger with regard to a certain person and later break out in cascades of curses, you should make an effort to talk to them. In the long run, it is certainly not a healthy solution to carry this out with yourself.
Often tired and exhausted? All about iron deficiency
The same applies to conflicts: bombarding a person with swear words is not recommended, no matter how much trouble there is. This only hardens the fronts and only causes new states of stress for you, such as feelings of guilt. It may also cost you friendships. In direct contact with people, it is definitely better to have a constructive conversation than to curse out loud.
If a curse escapes you in the presence of other people, immediately make it clear that it has nothing to do with the people present, and calm down as best you can.
5 secrets of happy couples
Should children be allowed to swear?
Many people still know the saying “Wash your mouth out with soap” from their childhood, when one or the other expression slipped out of their mouth. However, Baer expressly recommends to allow children to swear. Just make your children aware not to mention certain terms and set clear rules for cursing as well. The pedagogue emphasizes: “If parents forbid their children to curse, they forbid you from relieving them of emotional stress.”
Cursing is a human need and can be a blessing for body and soul. You can whistle at dogmas from your childhood like “You can’t say shit”. The best thing to do is to shout loudly when no one else can hear you. This way, cursing does not become a bad habit, but health management.