The Power of Profanity — Part 2

When we left off Friday, I mentioned how work can feel like sixth grade. How?

On the job, we segregate into cliques, (you know I had to look up the correct spelling of that word). Within those cliques, we try to impress each other, gain acceptance, and even bully when we feel defensive. In all of these areas, profanity is often wielded as a sword.

It continues to amaze me how someone who habitually utters curses will feel slighted, angry, hurt, or afraid when another does so in their presence. Those expletives don’t have to be directed at them, just spoken in their hearing, for negative emotions to immediately change physiology.

I’ve conducted many informal interviews on the subject, and repeatedly, the story is the same. When someone cusses around me, it makes me feel funny inside, even though I often do it myself. So what is this funny feeling?

Anxiety balls up in the stomach, and breathing changes from a relaxed, healthy flow to short, unfulfilled gasps. Blood pressure elevates, detected by reddening of the ears, face, and/or neck.  And worst of all for productivity, the brain freezes for seconds or even minutes. Profanity changes us from someone free to get the job done, to someone temporarily paralyzed, and the time lost will never be regained.

So pay attention to the words you use — they matter. If profanity is a habit, consider how you feel at another voice raised to curse in your presence. If you’re responsible for productivity at work, in any capacity, know that profanity can keep you from succeeding. Yes there’s power in profanity, but it isn’t the kind that makes us prosper.

Anita FreshFaith @ Work


Anita Agers-Brooks is a Business Expert, Certified Personality Trainer, Communications Specialist, speaker, and writer. She lives in Missouri.

Contact her via or

James 3:10

New International Version (NIV)

Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be.


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