Hey, I've got a secret for you! Do you live for gossip?

Well it's not just a wicked pleasure anymore. Gossip's actually good for you! The Canadian magazine Chantelaine says research shows that two-thirds of human conversation is a form of gossip. But only five percent is the malicious kind you really shouldn't do. In fact, proper gossip is helpful for all kinds of reasons, from helping us figure out acceptable behavior to spreading information. But there's a difference between 'good' gossipers and 'bad' ones. Here's the scoop:

  • The first type is the Good-News Gossip: They want to be first to spill the word on the latest pregnancy or engagement. But if there's a Good-Newser who's always spoiling your surprises, be sure they're the last to know, not the first!
  • The second type of gossip is The Exaggerator. They imply things that may - or may not - be true. They say things like: "Did you see Sheila's new ring? Her husband bought it after his out-of-town business trip. And you know what that means!" But actually, you don't! Bottom line: Eventually, people stop listening to everything exaggerators say.
  • Then there's the Family Grapeviner. They love to rehash the family gossip over and over again. It can cause some tense moments if it gets out of control. But the good thing is   Grapeviners know what's going on in the family and often have crucial information at critical times. If you're the victim of the family judge, you'd better be straightforward and tell them how you feel.
  • The final two gossips are: the Chatty Co-Worker and the Town Crier   the busybodies who never shut up. So, how can you handle them? Don't give them any information, unless you want it broadcast to the world!

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