Gossip is Ugly

I have known many people (sadly, mostly women) who spend a lot of time gossiping. I, too, have been guilty of this evil act, and it never brings goodness to you. Even if there is no direct backlash, you are left with an icky feeling that you have not been true to someone. I think when others talk about people, in a bad way; it is quite possibly the ugliest thing I have ever seen. It makes an otherwise beautiful person look unattractive. It produces so much havoc. Why do people gossip? I think they do it to make them look and feel better about who they are. Why else would you talk poorly about someone else? There is absolutely no benefit to you.unless you are trying to make someone look bad so that you will look better.

Webster defines gossip this way:

Gossip (noun) a) a person who habitually reveals personal or sensational facts about others, b) rumor or report of an intimate nature, c) chatty talk

When I was in college, I fell into a bad gossip trap. I was surrounded by people who were shallow and who talked about other people on a daily basis. I am not blaming them for my participation in this, I was a big girl. But if I were a stronger person at the time I would have walked away much sooner than I did. These friendships never felt right to me, because there was no substance. These girls were very superficial, insecure, and "chatty". I joined in their nonsense. My Mom always told me, "You are who you hang around!" and boy was she right! Those few months of my life started out wonderful. I had fun with these girls; I met lots of people, went to parties, and did the "college thing". The more I got to know these girls and was partaking in the gossip, triangles, and websmy life became a living hell. My words came back to me, I was confronted, I had to tell white lies to cover the wrongdoing I knew I had done with my loose mouth, and I lost friends. I was building a name for myself that I didnt like. I had to evaluate who I was and who I wanted to spend my time with. I distanced myself from this crowd and eventually made new quality friends, and my life started to feel better immediately. This Proverbs is so true:

Proverbs 16:28 (NIV) a perverse person stirs up conflict, and a gossip separates close friends.

What I learned from that experience was and is invaluable. Gossip never heals, it only hurts. It makes people look ugly. It labels your character as unreliable, insecure, unfair, flimsy, untrustworthy, and disrespectful. Towards the end of those unsubstantial friendships, I really began to evaluate the kind of person I was becoming and what kind of person I wanted to be. I like people and I would not want to be the one who was talked aboutso why was I talking about others in a negative way? It boils down to respect. When you respect someone, you act and talk about them as if they are standing by your side. I was not doing that. If you dont like or respect someone, a person of strong character lets them be. I was not doing that either. I think gossiping also shows a persons insecurities. If you put someone else down it is to falsely build yourself up. I had to ask myself, what was making me feel so insecure. What did I need to work on and how was I going to become the person who slipped away? Eleanor Roosevelt said it perfectly:

"Great minds discuss ideas. Average minds discuss events. Small minds discuss people."

 

It took me a long time to realize that if someone is talking to me about another person, they are more than likely talking about me to someone else! Their loose lips really put me on guard with them. I will watch what I say and be very careful around him/her. Do you have a friend like that, who talks about others to you? Do you participate in the gossip? Do you get sucked in? Or are you on the other side of that relationshipare you the one who is the gossiper?

Be aware: you may not even realize you are participating in this ugliness.

Be aware: Gossip carries with it a lot of negative energy. I can feel it and I dont like it. Pay attention next time you are around someone who is gossipingit is draining; it sucks the life out of you and the conversation. There is an energy you can feel, if you tune into itand it doesnt feel good. On the flip side, tune into how you feel when the conversation is about something positive…an idea that someone has about a new venture, a book they want to write, a seminar they attended, a new recipe they like, a vacation being planned, etc. The vibration is very different and alive!

Challenge: Be aware. Dont gossip. If someone is gossiping to you; set a new boundary with them, change the subject, or at the least do not participate. Speak about events and ideas, not people. You can do it!

 

Comments

  1. Gigi Peterson says:

    So well said Deanna! Just recently, I found myself speaking in an ugly way about someone. And although I was pretty heated, the words still sounded like poison coming out of my mouth. I quickly felt embarrassed and ashamed. So after the conversation, I really had to reflect. Where did that nasty really come from? I figured out that it stemmed from MY OWN insecurity. A good self check!!

  2. Christopher Hopkins says:

    Deanna,
    Well said. I truly believe that gossip can bring on a lot negative energy. Love your thoughts and have a great week!!
    Hopper

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