It may have just started with a small talk about A that B shared to C which was overheard by D who asked E about how true was it. E whose curiosity was aroused then inquired from F about the whole thing until what was supposedly an insignificant issue was blown out of proportion until everybody in the Alphabet Village has his/her own version of it. When A heard of the talks about him and began to confront everyone, nobody dared admit to be the source. Then it came to the point that the peaceful town has turned into a battlefield of rumors, gossips and intrigues.
Wikipedia defines gossip as idle talk or rumor about the personal or private affairs of others. Sometimes it starts when someone who thinks that sharing a bit of information about another person's personal life is totally harmless. Unfortunately some small issues turn into a full blown scandal when the concerned people begin to react accordingly.
Why Do People Gossip?
Maritza Manreza of factoidz wrote: "There are many reasons why people feel compelled to gossip, therefore, humiliating and putting others down. Sometimes people do it out of spite, just because they can. Other times, people gossip because they feel they will benefit from its end result, such as possible looking better in front of the boss in a working situation." Some people feel superior above others when they think they get hold of this valuable (at least for these gossip mongers) information and are just waiting to be triggered to drop the bomb. It's as if they have this power in them - the power of malicious information. Two of the most common reasons why people gossip are inferiority and jealousy. People start spreading rumors about a person because they feel insecure and jealous and when they think they have already painted an ugly picture out of this person, they feel they are better than him/her.
"Gossips cause the victims to feel bad and lose self-confidence about themselves. They enhance division and never will it promote camaraderie. Gossips destroy organization, friendships, and family relationships. They break trust and credibility."
Gossip: Good or Bad?
I'd like to quote factoids again: "All gossip is bad, even the casual gossip about not so important issues." More so, when people spread gossip with malice (which more often than not most people don't admit). Gossips cause the victims to feel bad and lose self-confidence about themselves. They enhance division and never will it promote camaraderie. Gossips destroy organization, friendships, and family relationships. They break trust and credibility.
How To Deal with Gossipers:
In his site 2knowmyself, M.Farouk Radwan, MSc wrote three effective suggestions in dealing these kind of people and I'd like to share the first two here.
- Let him burn: This is one of my favorite strategies, if someone is gossiping about me because of jealousy I just keep sending him good news about me to keep him burning with his own fire.
- Confront him: If the gossiper is causing damage to your reputation and if you don't expect him to stop soon then call him when you are calm. Tell him that you are aware of his doings and that only those who are scared to face one another directly gossip. Most people will apologize and remember your call the next time they decide to gossip about you.
If I may add:
- Ignore him: Let the gossiper know that he isn't worthy of your time and efforts. If he does that to gain friends and followers, let him be. In the end, people will know the truth and his true colors will be revealed. Sometimes, only those whose with itchy tongues like him listen to his nasty rumors.
Why this Article?
Because I need to remind myself that talking about other people's lives will not do anything good to me. Because I need to remind myself that if I don't have anything good to say about other people, I better keep my mouth shut.