This has been bothering me for some time. Gossip. It’s EVERYWHERE, your home, your office, my home, my office, my lips…Yes, I am not perfect, I have gossiped and do gossip. (Not proud to say it). It’s not something I take pleasure in but it’s something that is sometimes unavoidable. What’s bothering me is not the little juicy gossips about Helen cheating on her diet or the neighbor having different women over every weekend. No, it’s the daily office ones that tears down that other sweet but quirky woman down the hall, the simple but honest and trustworthy man working at the menial job. Maybe they are deserving of being called nosy and holier than thou or lazy and maybe even potentially postal but who are we to be the judge? The Good Book says ‘Let he who is without sin cast the first stone” and, ‘Remove the bean from your own eye before you try to remove it from your brother’s”.
How and why is it that much easier to cast the first stone or blindly seek to remove the speck from the eyes of others? Is it because of our fear that if we do not react first, then someone else will and we would be the victim and not the assailant? Or we may as well gossip about that person before they gossip about us? Heck, they may be already gossiping about us so why not get our licks in?
At the end of the day, I mentally beat up myself for succumbing to the gossiping that goes on around me. In my office I usually intend to be just a listener and not a partaker but do sometimes get dragged in to the point where I would nod or put in a few words, much to my regret.
It takes a degree of strength to listen to your friends talk disparagingly about another employee as they gather around in your cubicle. As part of the clique, how do you say ‘Not here guys, we are not doing this today.’ or how do you just get up and walk away? You very well know that you will be the next gossip topic if you do any of those. Peer pressure all over again.
I did some research on how to combat this viper and found this helpful link: http://www.wikihow.com/Not-Gossip. In case you don’t have a chance to read it, here’s an important bit taken from it.
Ask yourself these several simple questions mentally about what you’re about to say before speaking aloud:
- How would you like it if someone said this about you?
- Is it true? Maybe it is, but is repeating it necessary?
- Is it kind? It may be true, about yourself or someone else, but if it will harm another, you have no right to repeat it.
- Is it just? Is it honest, compassionate, with the person’s best interest at heart?
- Is it necessary? Will it do any good and satisfy all the other conditions? Not only is it necessary, but is it necessary for the other person to hear? Remember, “Need To Know.