Last week, a few friends of mine got together for a cuppa and a chat. The sun was shining, the birds were singing and the company was delightful. We discussed the usual…work, family and the plans for the weekend. However, our conversation veered towards a problem one of us was having with a mutual friend. We listened intently; silently letting the story be told without trying to fix the problem.
However, bringing someone, who was not present, into the conversation opened a flood gate to discuss others. It was almost as if this perverse, innate desire to analyse the ‘other’ had hijacked our conversation, and the stories we CREATED were amazingly biased. Almost simultaneously, we looked at each other and acknowledged what we were doing. Gossip had hurt one of us; hence the discussion. Now, we were carrying the torch. We were holding the energy of negativity and feeding it.
Collectively, we made a choice to change the direction of the conversation. We dropped the subject and let it go. There was a shift in the air and a lightness fell upon us. We laughed, despite ourselves. There was no inner-critic. There was no judgment. We just decided to change the habit of gossip.
This experience has stayed with me for a number of days. It is not always easy to recognize when we are gossiping or fuelling negativity. However, in this instance, three of us did. Imagine if we could continue this practice of ‘right speech’ throughout all of our moments. The knock on effect would be amazing….