What does gossip mean and why do people gossip? It is an age old reality and one that needs to stop. We all need to fight gossip and it all starts right here, right now, within each of us.
So - If It’s Not Your Story To Tell … Don’t Tell it
You lean in conspiratorially, your voice lowers to a whispered subdued tone and then the words, “So, did you hear…” tumble unheeded out of your mouth and they fall on careless ears that are all too often; and all too keen; to pick up on gossip.
And the trouble with these careless words being flung about – unheeded, unchecked and without too much thought; or regard; or verification of the truth - the trouble with these words that are so often embellished or distorted and very often not even true – the trouble is they hurt – the trouble is they can have a lasting impact and the trouble is they benefit no one.
If it is not your story to tell – don’t tell it.
It does the gossiper no good.
People are actually very intuitive. They know that if you are gossiping about other people, then there is a very real chance that it the not too distant future, you will be doing exactly the same to them.
It does the listener no good.
By listening and not refuting the gossip, they are doing nothing about breaking the cycle of gossip. They are quietly accepting the gossip and perhaps in time repeating the story – a story that may not in fact be accurate, true or even vaguely true.
And, we all know that there are usually so many different sides to every story – our version of the story; their version of the story and probably somewhere in the middle … some truth to the story.
And it definitely does the victim no good.
Words once flown are swifter than any horse and they cannot be recalled. Ever!
Words can hurt. Innuendo can damage. Inaccurate suggestions can give rise to full blown gossip and self–esteem will break.
Worthiness will be eroded and personal integrity will be questioned and the worst thing about being gossiped about is knowing that you weren’t worth the truth.
You see people generally see what they are looking for and hear what they are listening for and if you give gossip the slightest chance, it can gather a momentum and life all of its own. Blanks are filled in with exaggerations and eventually a totally different story gains a life all of its own.
It lives and it breathes and it grows and it multiplies.
So, if it is not your story to tell – don’t tell it.
Rather think before you speak so that your words can settle softly onto the hearts of others… so that you words can build and not break … so that your words will do no harm.
Speak gently and define worthy.