Gossip? Oh no. I don't engage in rude barbs and hurtful comments of those not present to defend themselves.
Good for you!
What about well meaning news? That's not gossip.
Oh, but it is.

According to the Oxford American Dictionary gossip is: Casual talk, especially about other people's affairs.

It's human nature to talk, share and purge to our friends. It's how we connect.
Connecting is great, but make sure that it's your own news that you share.

Why is gossiping such a ruinous activity?
Because we don't trust those who talk about others. We wonder what they say about us.
Trust is essential in all relationships.
Your success is built on the trust of family, friends, your co-workers, and customers.
To protect your hard work and success decide now to avoid any speaking about those not present.

This includes text and e-mail messages. Not kidding.

How do we do this when people love to talk about others?
One way to avoid engaging in other-talk is to redirect the conversation by telling the person that you'd rather hear about them.
This usually works. Most people love to talk about themselves.
If this ploy doesn't end the spewing of information, kindly tell the person that you're not comfortable talking about those not there.
Refuse to take part in, listen to or share information on others not present.

Trust and your integrity are closely aligned. Do not blow it with idle conversation.

Gossip is like the fabled siren's song. It entices and lures us. We get sucked into the seductive tones until we are smashed on the rocks of truth.
Why truth?
Because the person in question usually finds out and you're the one shot full of holes in the end.

I've cut people from my life because I couldn't trust them. 

We value those we trust.

Be a person others value.

Now for the fun! One lucky commenter will win a print copy of my new book APOLLO'S GIFT. Make sure that I can reach you by putting your info on the contact page.


01/21/2013 8:30pm

I do think it is important to celebrate the success of others and to always look for the good, even when it's hard--especially when it's hard. The old addage that 'if you look for the negative, you will find it' can be flipped to say, 'if you look for the positive, you will find it.'

01/21/2013 8:53pm

True! the only time I heard of sharing the good causing problems was when someone thought a friend's change to writing articles meant they were quitting their day job. Not true! Have to get the info correct or keep it to ourselves. It never hurts to ask if the knowledge can be shared. Hugs! I love to root people on and happy dance victories.

01/22/2013 5:15am

This has tripped me up in the past, and I had no idea how often I engaged in "idle gossip" until I read The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz. "Being impeccable with your word" means always speaking the truth and not falling prey to gossip. It also means that we are responsible for every word that comes out of our mouths. It took a lot of practice and self-awareness to break the "habit" but these days I would say that I'm on top of it. "The power of life and death are in the tongue" as the bible says. Mom had it right, if you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything.

01/22/2013 9:11am

Well spoken! I enjoyed the Four Agreements. There's a lot of wisdom there. I think we've all struggled with this issue or been burned by it. Me too! It takes work to end the idle tongue from wagging.
Thank you for sharing your wisdom and experience.

01/22/2013 6:18am

It's always hurtful to discover (usually by accident) something unkind was said about you. I've been both on the receiving end, and I'm embarrassed to admit, caught in the act of doing it to someone else. It's hard, especially if we feel we've been wronged by someone, to not want to lash out or spew to someone. However, we never know where it goes from there. Even a trusted friend can slip up later. Email is especially dangerous, as is our other cyber sounding boards. All it takes is a "forward" key or "share" and your words are out of your control, and sadly, reflect you as a person to those who don't know you. Thanks Sandy for another timely message.

01/22/2013 9:18am

Great comments! I've known people in serious trouble over a text or email spread abroad. Not wise to put things in writing that you don't want public and not wise to say things that can be misconstrued and screw you later. We've all done it and been done to.It's always good to have it in mind. Thanks for the read and support!

01/22/2013 6:29am

I think my grandmother said it best. If you can't say something nice about someone, then keep it to yourself. What I find interesting today is that there are too many in our society who know all about Kim Kardashian or Lindsay Lohan, yet don't know where Mali is.

01/22/2013 9:20am

LOL! It's true. The power of text, TV and e-mail gets the word out, especially when it isn't the best or useful. Your grandmother knows her stuff!

01/22/2013 8:06am

I wholeheartedly agree with this post. So many people in this world tend to gossip about others with no real purpose except to spread untruths. I don't understand it. Which is why I think I tend to lean toward male friends. I always have, even through High School and College, had more male friends because they didn't "talk" about others in hurtful ways. If they were upset with you, they'd let you know it and wouldn't (typically) say things behind your back that they couldn't say to your face. Even today, some of my best friends are male friends. Some are my husband's friends are my close friends.

Now don't get me wrong, I have many VERY close female friends and lots of female friends I'd hang out with. But when it comes to trust, there are a select few (in either gender) I count on. Some are female, but I'd have to say, the majority are men.

Nice post, Sandy. I wish more people would read this blog post and really take a deep look inside themselves.

01/22/2013 9:24am

I love your take on life. I agree with you. I have more male friends that I trust than female. I have women friends, but too many of them have proven I'd misplaced that trust. In your career, you can't come off as dishonest and expect people to stick. Readers want to like and trust you.
This goes beyond personal relationships to every facet of your life.

Thank you for the kind words.

01/22/2013 8:29am

Great advice, Sandy. The world seems to be getting so negative and there is so much nastiness going on. It is almost painful to even watch television shows with the characters making fun of others - even the commercials. I was raised to respect others...those days seem gone forever, especially when the people we are taught to respect sink to low levels of decency.

01/22/2013 9:26am

I agree! You see so much meanness on television. People don't seem to notice it anymore. Sad. I'm glad that you remain the positive burst of sunshine for us to bask in.

01/22/2013 9:04am

Gossiping was a means of transmitting news in communities before the era of telephones, radios, etc. I remember childhood visits to my grandparents' rural farm and the sharing of news about neighbors and extended family who were strangers to me. Unfortunately, much of it was unbalanced, and I grew up knowing some of those distant cousins only by their "sins" and not as real people.

If there is a common denominator of all societies, it surely is the prevalence of gossip. After all, it's one the means of social control and political power, isn't it? But you are absolutely right: the wise person does not engage in talking about other people. In the past I've been "lured by the siren's song" and reaped the negative consequences. There's no harder knocks than those dished out by Experience.

01/22/2013 9:30am

So true! My grandmother kept her lip buttoned, as she called it. She was wise. We have all been lured and burned by gossip. It's not fun when you're the one being destroyed. Once the trust has been lost, it's often gone forever. Thank you for sharing your comments and wisdom.

01/22/2013 12:23pm

If on is passing news, such as a new book, baby marriage, etc., I'll do it. But if it's anything that could be the cause of conjecture, I won't.

01/22/2013 2:37pm

You are a wise woman. Positive news that is factual is the way to go. Conjecture leads to misunderstanding and embellishment.

Thank you for sharing your thoughts. I always appreciate it.

01/22/2013 12:57pm

Thanks, Sandy. I often need reminders like this.

01/22/2013 2:38pm

You are most welcome. That's me, reminder girl of all those things we'd like to forget about but shouldn't.
Thank you for commenting!

Donna Velleman
01/23/2013 7:27pm

I was never into gossip, it can be so catty. It's also a way to get even or revenge. I'm with Renee with this.

01/23/2013 8:24pm

That's a great place to be. Best to not start that habit and avoid those who engage in it.
Thank you for supporting the blog and commenting.

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