Whoever gossips to you will gossip about you.
Live in such a way that you would not be ashamed to sell your parrot to the town gossip.
I have a few words to say about “gossip.” Before I start, I need to clarify a few things. When I told my daughter I was writing a blog piece about gossip, she said “…but Mom, you gossip all the time. What does gossip have anything to do with Inner Beauty?” Let me address these questions.
It is basic human nature to discuss the actions of others. Whether one talks about politics, religion, music or art, it usually involves the actions of another human being. We seek alternative viewpoints from family and friends regarding the actions taken by others. This is acceptable and necessary for one to learn and grow. Gossip, on the other hand, is usually hurtful to the person who is being discussed. Merriam-Webster’s Online Dictionary defines gossip as “a person who habitually reveals personal or sensational facts about others.” If we find ourselves spreading rumor, fact or fiction, about someone else, we need to stop. Did you ever hear the word “karma?” What goes around really does come around. We need to think before we speak so we don’t hurt someone, whether it was intentional or not.
I’m sure each one of you can recall a circumstance where you have been the victim of “gossip.” If you think back to your school days, do you remember being upset or hearing something that someone passed along about you? Do you remember thinking, “Why are they talking about me?” Unfortunately, gossip is not something that just happens when you are young. You can be the victim of gossip all throughout your life. Why? Because some people just thrive on spreading information. In addition, often the subject of the gossip started out as something totally different than what was originally heard. It’s like playing the game telephone. You hear something, pass it along, and along, and along. By the time it gets to the end of the line, it is something completely different than originally heard. Gossip takes one to talk and one or several to listen. The gossip is not damaging until others listen and give it attention.
It recently came back to me that someone was passing along information about me. My first thought was, “I’m almost 46 years old. Why would someone be so interested in what’s going on in my life.” “Am I that interesting?” I may not think I’m that interesting, but I’m interesting to the person spreading the gossip. Could it be that they have nothing better to talk about? Could it be that the subject of “me” is more fascinating than any other subject? To this person….I guess so!
Why do people gossip in the first place? A fascination with someone else’s life is usually because that person is not happy with their own life. When someone is not happy, and they perceive others as happy, they pry into the other’s life to see if they can find any unhappiness. In addition, people that view life as negative are usually not happy and are, therefore, prone to gossip. If you view life in a positive way and focus on what good you find in yourself, you will see the good in others. How about talking about the good attributes you see in someone and not the negative ones. Gossip can be viewed as a personal flaw in the character of those who have to use such ugly ways towards their neighbors/friends.
What to do if you are a victim of gossip? Hold you head up high and ignore it. They cannot reach you because you cannot be reached. You are perfectly happy with who you are and the decisions you make for yourself. You don’t have to impress anyone but yourself. You have Inner Beauty!! Being confident and secure in who you are will totally protect you from gossip. It just doesn’t matter what they say or think because it’s just not important to you. If they are slandering you and completely ruining your reputation, you may want to confront them and ask them why they feel the need to spread rumors about you. Hopefully, you will appeal to their kindness of heart and they will stop…and hopefully apologize. My Spartan side says, if they want to spread rumors, you can really give them something to talk about!...LOL