Monday, December 2, 2013

Prelude to Anti-Gossip Campaign

Ok so I am in process of starting an anti-gossip campaign. You question why? What is that all about? I was unaware of how harsh gossip is and how it affects people's lives. It is like bullying in a sneakier form. I have been a victim and I admit I have indulged.  It seems harmless. At first, it's small chatter here and there. Not too much of a bother because I know that people will talk about anything and everything when they get the opportunity. Then additions are made, embellishments are created, ridicule expands, and private conversations amongst others go on without your knowledge.

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. 
But outside of  the workplace: It can be even more detrimental.

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. 


CurlyHead on December 11, 2013 at 9:08 AM said...

I totally agree. Although I can admit in partaking in gossip when I was younger, now that I am older I don't care to. I really feel like those individuals who spread the falsities are lacking something in their own lives. How it affects each person also depends on that person. Yes, it can be hurtful but when you know the real truth that's all that matters. People are going to always talk, gossip, chit chatter, whatever you want to call it and you already know you can't control other people's actions. But I know it stings the most when it comes from those people who you consider your real good or close friends. It's always good to know who is really in your corner and who you can trust. Very rare nowadays, I must say. But as with all things, you have to carry on and this too shall pass.

Invigorating Beauty on December 11, 2013 at 5:40 PM said...

I will help!!!! I just talked to my staff about this on Friday.

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