Sometimes those naughty words just slip off your tongue before you can stop them. Swearing can be a way to relieve frustration and express your feelings in a direct manner. Unfortunately, swearing isn’t the kind of language you want your children to pick up. Children want to emulate their parents and if you make it a habit to use profane language in front of them, it’s probably going to come back to haunt you. So, how do you stop swearing? Here are some tips on how to stop swearing in front of the kids:
Tape record yourself when you’re angry.
One of the most effective ways to eliminate the habit of swearing in front of the kids is to carry a small recorder in your pocket. Next time you’re angry and feel the urge to release a cacophony of swear words, turn on the recorder. When you have a moment alone, play the tape back. You may be horrified at what you hear and completely unaware that your swearing sounded so bad. Ask yourself if you really want your children to be exposed to that.
Substitute new words for your current swear words.
One way to stop swearing is to write down the most common swear words you use on a daily basis. For each swear word, pick a more acceptable word as a substitute. Feel free to make up entirely new words to substitute for the old words. Sometimes just the act of saying strange words in place of the old swear words can break your anger and make you laugh. Your children will probably find it to be entertaining also.
Pause before you speak in anger.
Make it a habit when you’re anger to force yourself to take three long deep breaths and think about what you’re going to say. When you do this, you’re more likely to choose “G rated” words. Plus, it helps to dissipate some of your anger before you speak.
Learn how to express yourself in a more productive manner.
Instead of releasing a stream of swear words because you’re angry, make it a challenge to learn how to express yourself more directly. When you swear, you’re actually saying very little and are doing nothing to improve the situation. Become a problem solver by expressing your true feelings and you’ll gradually reduce the tendency to use swear words.
Remind yourself of how it affects your kids.
When you’re tempted to swear, ask yourself how you’d feel if your child spewed out a stream of swear words on the playground at school when a sports call didn’t go his way. Realize that you probably played a role in his behavior by reinforcing this behavior at home.
You probably won’t stop swearing overnight but give yourself time and develop greater awareness of how you speak in front of your children. Gradually, you can wean yourself of the habit and stop swearing once and for all.