If you didn’t know by now, gossip, whether positive or negative, has a good effect on us, this resulting from a study initiated by a team of Dutch researchers.
When we talk about other people, either we say good things or bad things, we involuntarily compare ourselves with them and so we gain much more confidence and self esteem and we self-evaluate ourselves positively.
According to researchers at the University of Groningen, women who hear negative gossip are withheld because they tend to protect themselves due to the fact that they think they will be blasphemed as well. On the contrary, men have a sense of restraint when they hear positive gossip about other people, because they compare themselves to other people and they consider them real threats.
Gossip is an important means of direct information, so we compare ourselves to others, which leads to influencing our behavior.
Experts advise us not to reject this type of discussion and accept the fact that gossip is an important part of our lives and to look at it with a critical attitude.
This study was published in the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, and it shows us why people want to be aware of the achievements of others and why it is prevalent in society.
The volunteers participating in this study were asked to think about the gossip they have heard about someone, regardless of its nature (positive or negative) and then to identify the level of self-protection and the increase of self-esteem after hearing the gossip.
According to the research, when it comes to negative news, the tendency of self-protection and self-promotion increases, and, to the contrary, at the emergence of positive news appears an increase of self-esteem.
Another interesting thing is that the previous studies show that women are responsible for spreading gossip and men are the first who transmit the confidential information. They use social networks to share information in less than three hours after hearing the news. Half of the men surveyed admitted that they cannot keep the secret for more than a few minutes.
It seems that women are a little more introverted because they can keep a secret for 3 hours and a half.