People may say that this no BIG deal... but believe me it is. Engaging in idle talk and chatter about personal issues of others is wrong. We all have been involved in it even if we were not the ones spreading the "tea" as they say. It is hurtful. Not only to your spirit but to your self esteem, your family, and your reputation. But we as a society love to read about, tell about, and share the misfortunes, scandals, and failures of others.. You see we do- that is why the tabloids, and gossip magazines and shows are so popular and booming!
Sad thing is that most people believe that gossip is a way of social bonding. It is thought to build connections with people you have wanted to befriend but the opportunity never presented itself. Gossip usually involves love, relationships, sex and other issues that people don’t usually talk about openly. Additionally, gossip almost always causes pain and humiliation for the person it’s about. Sometimes people become suicidal becasue it is imposisble to ignore once it gets to a certain level.
Low and behold Miss Jones gets fired from her job after 25 years of great service and kind relationships. No one knows why she was fired but they cannot wait to call the other co-workers and share her misfortune as well as add on the reasons they think she lost her job... Then the rumors begin. She lost her job because she was stealing. Maybe she was watching porn. No it was because she was harassing children. Which none of this is the actual truth but variations of the truth. She wasn't stealing but she was asking for donations from peers because she had a gambling problem that her husband did not know of. Her addiction was not porn it was the casino. She was not harassing children- she was being moody and stressed from her losses; incapable of coping and they filed complaints.
Not saying that some gossip is not true... But the things being shared is not the business of others to share and comment on especially when the person of interest is not around. It is should not be a form of entertainement when we have been blessed with so many other talents, skills, and gifts. Lives, careers, and relationships have been ruined due to gossip. There is an old saying that one shouldn't try to defend oneself against slander; your enemies won't believe you anyway and your friends don't need to hear your defense.
In the workplace, at orientation, there aretraining exercises that enforce that gossip is forbidden BUT it still happens. The book "Passing the Word" by Nancy Kurland and Lisa Pelled list the consequences of gossip in the workplace:
- Lost productivity and wasted time,
- Erosion of trust and morale,
- Increased anxiety among employees as rumors circulate without any clear information as to what is fact and what isn’t,
- Growing divisiveness among employees as people “take sides,"
- Hurt feelings and reputations,
- Jeopardized chances for the gossipers' advancement as they are perceived as unprofessional
- Attrition as good employees leave the company due to the unhealthy work atmosphere.
Will you support the cause?
Will you stop if you are involved?
It is never too late.
You may be ignorant to the fact that you are even hurting people or doing anything of harm. You may think that the person deserves it. Whatever the case, don't bear vain hearsay. It ruins lives.
More to come. I promise.