In Part One we defined Gossip as any type of harmful or hurtful communication that is not absolutely necessary to share and mentioned some of its dangerously negative results. Over the first two segments, we looked at the first seven ways we could turn potential negative speech into positive speech, becoming a lot more effective and value-based in the process.
Let’s look at the final three of ten.
8. Honesty Really Is the Best Policy. Be careful to always tell the truth, unless it will unnecessarily hurt others, break your own privacy or in some other way cause needless pain or anguish.
Yes, strive for honesty in everything you do. But, if it’s between honesty and unnecessarily hurting another’s feelings, it’s better not to be so truthful. Those who boast about being “brutally honest” are usually more interested in being brutal than they are in being honest. Honesty, mixed with tact and kindness, is a recipe that typically serves well.
9. Learn to say “I’m Sorry.” Everyone makes mistakes. If you’ve spoken badly about someone, clear it up immediately.
It might be embarrassing, but get it over with quickly. Apologize, ask for forgiveness, and let him or her know it won’t happen again. By the way, if bringing up your mistake to that person will only hurt them more, then don’t apologize, but commit to not ever doing it again.
10. Forgive. If you have been wronged, let it go.
Forgive for your sake, if not for theirs. Those who can forgive live healthier, happier, and less stressful lives. Those who say they’ll “forgive but not forget” are actually saying that they’ll neither forgive nor forget.
Try these ten pathways for the next month. The good news is, if you slip up now and then, it only means you are human. Try again. I congratulate you simply for making the effort.
The above is based on the book, GOSSIP: Ten Pathways to Eliminate It From Your Life and Transform Your Soul, which I was privileged to coauthor with Lori Palatnik