In a meeting a few years ago we were discussing the aspects of what we did that might be interesting to the general public. Pretty quickly it was suggested that we have a "rumor mill" button on our website. A little "behind the curtain" of what was going on. While this would probably peak visitors curiosity, the message it would send about our organization could be damaging.
Is it your story to tell?
Gossiping is one of, if not the most destructive actions anyone can take on another person. It ruins relationships & has the power to bring down organizations. If it's something another person has trusted you with it's NOT your story to tell. If you're not someone who can hear a thing & never repeat it, be honest with them. There are plenty of other ways you can be there to support them!
PROBLEMS TO AVOID
There are many pitfalls in any form of communication. Here are just a few from Marshall Goldsmith:
No gratitude: bad manners in its most simple form
No proper recognition: not being able to praise/reward
Not listening: most passive-aggressive form of disrespect
Destructive comments: needless sarcasms & remarks we think make us sould sharp & witty
Passing the buck: need to blame everyone but ourselves
No regret: inability to take responsibility for our actions, admit we're wrong or recognize how our actions affect others
Passing judgement: need to rate others & impose our standards on them
Punishing the messenger: misguided need to attack the innocent who are only trying to help
AGREEMENTS TO LIVE BY
The book I've gifted to others the most has to be "The Four Agreements" by Don Miguel Ruiz. There are situations every day where at least one of them applies & they are certainly relevant here.
1. Be Impeccable With Your Word
Speak with integrity. Say only what you mean. Avoid using the word to speak against yourself or to gossip about others. Use the power of your word in the direction of truth & love.
2. Don't Take Anything Personally
Nothing others do is because of you. What others say & do is a projetion of their own reality, their own dream. When you are immune to the opinions & actions of others, you won't be the victim of needless suffering.
3. Don't Make Assumptions
Find the courage to ask questions & to express what you really want. Communicate with others as clearly as you can to avoid misunderstandings, sadness & drama. With just this one agreement you can completely transform your life.
It's helpful to ask these questions before saying anything...literally.
Does this need to be said?
Does this need to be said by me?
Does this need to said by me now?
Here's what we know...being clear is kind.