Sunday, January 11, 2009

if you can't say anything nice...

when in the company of someone or persons who begin to talk about another person, what do you do? Listen in? Add your thoughts?

The best thing we can do to detour this kind of behavior is to either re-direct the conversation politely, which is actually very easy to do (look below) or if you simply cannot, walk away...that's right...I give you permission to stand up or turn around and simply walk away.

I am certainly not perfect and have made mounds of mistakes in my life and continue to do so, I will also use the advice I give to better my life, which is one of the reasons I have this blog.

Picture this: You're at lunch with seven other women from your general area (work, neighborhood, building, play group, gym, whatever...) and the conversation casually turns to Freida, the friend who couldn't make it and everyone knows she's having marital problems let's say. One lady at your lunch tells details that she heard from another of Freida's friends whom you don't know...or you do know her, it doesn't really matter. Another of the ladies at lunch chimes in with how poorly her kids are doing in school because of the whole situation. It's really already gone too far. But, at this point, you step in, be brave, and say, "You know what? It might hurt Freida's feelings to know that we're discussing her without her being here, I'm sure she needs our support and comfort right now" PAUSE "You're all so nice to care about her situation so much...but I haven't heard a thing about how all of your are doing?" There it is, plain and simple. If that doesn't work or you get a look like you just walked in without clothes, simply excuse yourself and let the ladies know that you'll see them later and simply walk out with a smile.

Sometimes the right thing isn't the easy thing, in fact, most of the time, the right thing isn't the easy thing, but it still needs to be done.

20 comments:

Lilly's Life said...

Woo hoo I saw your link on SITS. I so love your site and will be following you. Great advice!

Jedda said...

I saw you on Tip Junkie. Great advise, and a nice reminder :)

Jedda said...

sorry, one more "tip" I LOVE the music on your blog. But I remember that a friend told me she couldn't come to my blog when she was at work if I put music on it, so I took it off. Just a thought from Jedda at "thislittleproject.blogspot.com" :)

Janine said...

Jedda,

Such a great reminder. We've tried so many different options, the best we've found is to use the arrows at the bottom right to quickly scroll down and turn off the music and then use the "up" arrow to re-direct to the top of the blog. Have a wonderful day!

Melissa, Multi-Tasking Mama said...

Found you on Tip Junkie (gotta love those gals at SITS!) and this is a great post! I am constantly reminding my little sister (14) that if she is talking about others she does not have the right to be upset when she finds out they are talking about her. It is so important for girls/and some grown-up girls to remember that gossip is not good!

Ronnica said...

Good idea! I can't stand gossip, but I'm afraid that I don't always recognize it for what it is at the time.

Wendy@RuensOnTheRun said...

I just found your blog via SITS and I am excited to become a regular reader of yours. Nice blog!!

Reeni♥ said...

SITS sent me over to say hi. I'm so glad that I read this. My Mom, who certainly means well, keeps insisting that I go out to lunch with the biggest gossiper in our town. I hate every moment of it. I know when this lady prods me with all of her questions she is going to turn around and talk about me next. My Mom and I have even had fights over me not going, we didn't talk to each other for a week over it, made for a very sad Christmas.

Jeanne said...

Great advice -- it's pulling off the right tone of voice, facial expression, body language that's the trick, though.

BTW -- my (brand new) boss just walked in as I was pulling up your blog (on my lunch hour) and it started singing to us....

the RaMbLeR said...

Great advise!

I rarely have to worry too much about this since I work in the home and stay so busy with my 3 boys.

I do however dislike gossip and try to avoid it!

Valerie said...

Hey I've jumped over from Tip Junkie and glad that I did. I too don't always recognize gossip. I kinda sit there and then it hits me. But I am also one to listen and if I know something isn't right I am first to correct them. Seems like I am always devil advocate in conversations like these. I'm always like well maybe she's just not feeling well. She told me that wasn't true. I never walk away. I have been on the other end also. Just recently I spoke to someone that my gut told me not too cause she is the worst kind of person. Her and her daughters told a bunch of lies about what I said. Luckily for me they didnt' realize that I had like three witnesses to our conversation and they were soooo put in there place. Yay!!! Now if I know your trouble and you just run your mouth I don't have anything to do with you. Wow I didn't mean to write a book. Love your blog!

Jamie said...

That is just wonderful, hehe! I like that! Over from SITS and saw you featured on Tip Junkie :-) What a great blog...I added you to my 'follow' list because one can never have enough good manners, hehe...thanks for sharing them all!

Lynette said...

First!
I love the music.

You have me there right off.

Next my grandmother was my etiquette teacher. Now she is gone and I have found you thanks to SITS and Tip Junkie.

We all need "the nice aunt" who teaches us how to be "ladies" in all situations.

Thanks

PJay said...

I love Ronnica's comment. As women we are so concerned about our friends and loved ones that it's easy to get sucked into "gossip" and not know it. It helps to ask for your higher power to alert you when it's gossip. One thing I tell my daughters is "stop and think before you say something.....what good is this going to do" You would be amazed at the amount of conversation this prompting stops. Love your blog and read it regularly.

January 12, 2009 6:50 pm

lorrwill said...

Love this!

Oh how I wish that more people paid attention to the social graces.

Thank you for existing.

(also found you following the yellow brick road from SITS/Tip Junkie)

Michelle said...

Saw your blog mentioned by the SITs girls and thought I would come over and say hi!

Great blog and great advice. I do try hard not to gossip about other's. Not always easy to do so it is always nice to be reminded not to go there!

heather said...

Social etiquette can be tricky. I have such a hard time listening to gossip, and generally try to turn the conversation to a new topic - although it is never discrete. this is great advice. So glad SITS gave your link. I'm a new fan!

Kathryn @ Australia Entertains said...

I am so excited to have found you! Thank you for your beautiful blog. Have added you to my links. Australians love great manners (must be that English heritage we all love to hate)... Would love you to love us too!

Heather said...

What a great blog! I just came over from Tip Junkie & have you bookmarked! :)

Anonymous said...

I love your site! thanks for doing this.

 
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