The term “Reverse Gossip Game” was originally coined by Bob Burg and he has wonderful, insightful posts on the topic. Join the conversation and follow him on twitter @bobBurg.
Blogger’s Note: This post was inspired by Bob Burg’s amazing book: The Go-Giver. If you haven’t read it yet, pick up your copy today!
The Reverse-Gossip Game: [As defined by my grandma] “Say and do as many wonderful things about people, as you can, behind their back!”
I know the movie: “The Hunger Games” created quite the buzz at the box office a while back. However, in this blog post, here’s an interesting game I’d like you all to try: “The Reverse Gossip Game”.
Rules of the game:
1. No complaining about anything or anyone (Not your job, the bills, your spouse, your friend(s), your family, colleague(s), politician(s)….)
2. Find a sincere reason to be grateful for every thing, every experience and every one in your life.
3. Say and do many wonderful things about people in your life, behind their back!
So, let’s talk some more about this activity that seems to be associated more or less with women-folk: G.O.S.S.I.P!!! I’m not referring to the harmless little chats here and there, about other people’s lives. This type of ‘fun gossip’ may actually be good for your health! Rather, I mean the other malicious type of gossip; the insidious, sinister and deliberate destruction of other people’s character by volitionally spreading falsehoods, half-truths and blatant lies! If you engage in this form of malicious gossip, it is important to realize that you are short changing yourself in the following ways:
Mentally: A lack of creativity is one of the fall-outs of malicious gossiping. This is because all you see and spread is negativity and so, you get drained and unintentionally shut down your own creative juices.
Physically: True beauty radiates from the inside out. No matter how perfect you look physically, the more you destroy or cut others down, the bitter and uglier your spirit becomes to the outside world. Too much negativity also affects your health and overall well being.
Spiritually: ‘All things look yellow to the jaundiced eye’, so do not fall into a default position where all you do is see the mistakes of others and delight in spreading it around. We all make mistakes. Our experiences, good or bad make us who we are. Being judgmental detracts us from learning LIFE lessons inherent in the experiences of others. And of course it prevents you from seeing the huge log blinding your eyes, and this means your growth and transformation is somewhat stunted. Without growth it may be difficult to find sustainable success and joy in life!
Emotionally: The more you slander and maliciously gossip about others, the more stunted you are emotionally (Low EQ-Emotional Intelligence Quotient)! Most often, those who delight in tearing down others are avoiding dealing with their own issues and challenges. Seeing someone else’s pain and ‘downfall’ somehow makes up for their sorry states! ‘A good reputation is built in drops and destroyed in bucketfuls’….
Financially: In life, an important resource is the degree and quality of our ‘human connectivity’ and our networks. You may find it very difficult to both build deep or meaningful relationships and/or sustain those relationships (personally and professionally). This will invariably have a negative impact on your human capital/wealth and overall success in life.
So maybe, just maybe, you may not be classified as a typical ‘malicious gossip’, this post is still relevant to you especially in handling possible uncomfortable scenarios. Have you ever had one of those unsavory situations or experiences among friends or colleagues where you find yourself saying derogatory, hurtful and destructive things about someone you all know?
Have you ever (intentionally or not) been the gleeful bearer of malicious gossip about others? Do you remember how terrible you felt afterwards? When you sobered up from being drunk on ‘bitter-malice juice’, didn’t you wish you could take back everything you’d said? Remember, If it doesn’t feel right, it most often isn’t right.
Do you have a friend or colleague that’s always gossiping maliciously, never seeing or saying anything good about others? Note: They WILL do the same thing to you with others! The interesting thing about malicious gossip is that it hurts both the bearer and the listener! Do not make yourself available and receptive to such talk.
If you keep hearing them, you begin to either contribute to these conversation or think alike. Your outlook is the average of those closest to you. Choose your crowd well! Remember, your guiding motto should be to ‘ Remain loyal to the absent person’. Always ask yourself, ‘what is the purpose of this conversation’? Remember, if it does not edify you, it takes away from you. If you’re not learning from it, you’re wasting time on it.
Here are some suggestions to deal with such situations:
1. Set the tone and control the conversation when it starts to derail downwards towards malicious gossiping. Always ask gossips difficult questions and state profound statements to make the bearer of the tales reflect/re-think and hopefully pattern-interrupt their negative spin about others.
Some very good examples: ‘Were you there when it happened?, ‘What do you gain by spreading this’? ‘Every body makes mistakes, the most important thing is to learn from others’, ‘The truth is, I’m really not interested in people’s lives especially their shortcomings, I’m too busy dealing with MY life and MY challenges’….(Note: This may initially not make you popular but eventually, it will attract the right people to your life)!
2. Teach people how to treat you and engage with you. Make yourself inaccessible to people who are always blaming, complaining and castigating others. Set your space and guard your space well, do NOT become a crap magnet!
3. Proclaim and reinforce clearly what you stand for, your values and principles. You attract what and who you ARE!
So ladies, let’s turn ‘gossip’ into a good thing. We all do it, we might as well own it and have lots of fun as we play the ‘Reverse Gossip Game’!
Live Passionately! Live Freely! Live Beautifully!
“The walls in the room of life are always listening and they do not know how to keep secrets. So be gentle, forgiving, empathetic and loyal to person who’s absent from the room. Say at dusk, what you would say in the light of dawn. It may not make you popular but it will gift you with self-respect and peace of mind. Dream wonderful dreams and choose to co-create your destiny with God!”
-Juliet Ume, #UNLockingYourHeARTofLeadership
Remember, you are not ordinary, you are divinely unique. You are WOW (Wonderful One-of-a-kind Woman)!
Warmest Regards & Cyber-Hugs.
Juliet ‘Kego Ume-Onyido, MBA
Poet | Master-Certified Leadership Coach-Trainer -Consultant|
~Take empowered ACTION towards a Healthier, Sexier, Wealthier YOU!~
The preceding is a guest post from Juliet Ume, MBA –Co-Founder and Executive Director at Whole Woman Network. Juliet is the author of the upcoming books: “UN-Locking Your HeArt of Leadership” and “Today, I Will Not Bow”. A self-described Life-Connoisseur, who loves life and the whole human experience, Juliet was nicknamed a ‘reminderist’, [one who reminds us of that which we already know; that we are not fractured or broken and NOW is the perfect time to replace that fallacy with a new, beautiful truth: we are worthy, empowered, complete, whole creatures and our life journey is to return to wholeness]!
Her message is simply: “To use the power of written-spoken-sung WORDS to connect, heal, empower, change and transform our inner and outer worlds. Words have power in the meaning and interpretation we choose to give them and all of life is synchronistic poetry in motion! Are you telling empowering stories about yourself and others?”
She is a passionate advocate of WomEntrepreneurship, Leadership, Investment & Financial Literacy for women and youth (especially girls). Her mission is simply to engage, educate and empower women, regardless of their levels of income or background, to return to ‘wholeness’ and live Healthier, Sexier, Wealthier Lives using Faith-based, Scientific and Universal (Common-Sense) principles! Follow her on Twitter: @wholewomaninc, @julietumeinc. Enjoy some of her portfolio of poems on her Floetry Blog and follow her daily reflective posts on Facebook.
- Stop Gossiping (mrcrazypanda55.com)
- Office Gossip: Is It A Bad Thing? (chicago.cbslocal.com)
- Gossiping May Be Malicious, But Here’s Why It’s Good For Our Health (blisstree.com)
Thank you, Juliet. Terrific article, and I so appreciate the acknowledgement. And, I love your Grandma. What a wise and wonderful woman and terrific role model.
Thank YOU!! Every year I re-read your book, ‘The Go-Giver’, I gain fresh insights and new learnings…. P.S: My grandma is late now, but I’m sure she’ll get a hearty chuckle and be tickled pink by your comment, so thank you!
I’m so sorry for your loss. I know your Grandma is smiling down upon you from Heaven; proud of her wonderful granddaughter!
What tremendous advice you offer here…. I love the idea of “reverse gossip” – I am going to share this on Pinterest, too…. glad to find you (a bit late) via the Saturday Sharefest!
Hi Julie, thanks for stopping by our blog and for sharing with your network. The sharefest was awesome! I’m a bit out of my element on Twitter, so your tips would be great!