OK. You’re determined not to spread secrets about your friends. You’ve decided that you are going to be a trustworthy person. But you still find yourself in situations where others are not so discreet or honorable. How do you nip gossip in the bud?
- Plan ahead with safe topics of conversation when attending social functions.
- Change the subject. Before the speaker has a chance to get the gossip out, interrupt with a question or perhaps a compliment on what the speaker is wearing.
- When your conversation partner is about to share a juicy tidbit about “Shari,” ask, “Did Shari ask you to share this information with me?”
- If your group begins chatting about someone who isn’t present, smile sweetly and say, “You know, this is making me uncomfortable.”
- Let your friends know you are trying to observe a gossip “fast”—trying to avoid all gossipy conversations.