Are you driven to dish the “tea” at every chance you get?
Do you thrive in conversations when you feel like you have the one-up on someone else because you know something about them they don’t know you know?
Are you even aware you do it?
Before you share information regarding one person with another, do you think about the purpose and value of this information? Is it to help or hurt them? Is it to help you?
Are you impressed by people who gather and share information with you? Do you really think that if they can share and dish “tea” with you, they’re not doing the same about you with others?
What is your purpose for calling Person A to let them know you went out and saw Person B, just because you’ve heard Person A discussing Person B before (more than likely in confidence)? Are you trying to impress and show off to other people you’re with at the time?
Do you have an internal rule about being held in confidence only if other person explicitly discloses it’s not to be repeated? Do you even hold true to that or do you still run off and share what you know with even just one other person?
Maybe you can think of someone you know who is like this, but if this is not what you’re about, be careful about your circle and who you surround yourself with and take really stock of the words and context of what comes out of your own mouth.
“Men and women range themselves into three classes or orders of intelligence; you can tell the lowest class by their habit of always talking about persons; the next by the fact that their habit is always to converse about things; the highest by their preference for the discussion of ideas.”
Broken down, essentially, this is saying that ” small minds discuss people; average minds discuss events; and great minds discuss ideas”.
If you’re consumed with thoughts and judgements about other people, with no value or intent of bettering or helping a situation, then sadly, you fall in to the small minded class.
But, if you aren’t into the gossip, or you want to know how to curb this bad habit here are some ideas:
- Just say “No”. Tell people who try to share gossip with you that you aren’t interested, you’d rather not be part of this conversation. “I would very much like to be excluded from this narrative” – Taylor Swift
- Stay unimpressed. If someone does share information about another person with you, blankly say “oh, ok” and don’t entertain further conversation by asking questions or acting interested. Move on and engage in conversation about another topic with more value to you.
- Don’t spread it. If you’ve been told something, whether or not the other person told you not to tell anyone else, don’t share it. With anyone. Let it fizzle and burn out with you. Worry about yourself.
- Pay special attention to the topics you discuss with your friends. Are you the one that brings up topics regarding people, or are your friends? Do you find it impossible for you to interested in current events around the world or locally? Are they not interested in spending time with you or talking with you if you don’t discuss people? Try to find events around the world to share ideas about with your friends in any conversation you have.
- If you do speak about a person, make sure it’s only something positive. Something you like about them, something you admire, or something you wish to emulate. Sharing negative, judgemental tidbits really helps no one. People only focus on other’s negativity to make themselves feel like they’re better than others. Spreading positivity can help elevate yourself to do better and be better. “If you compare yourself with others you may become vain and bitter, for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.” – Max Ehrmann, Desiderata
Try these things and you won’t be driven to engage in gossipy behaviour. Introspection is key. “Check yourself before you wreck yourself” – Ice Cube, Check Yo Self.
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