Thursday, March 25, 2010

Hearsay

I was rather the victim (but not to my real hurt) of third-hand gossip this week. Someone overheard something that wasn't their business, then asked about it, got second hand-information, talked to someone else about it, and then communicated to me in a somewhat defensive manner before having heard my side of the story.

And what's more,the communication was by email, not the best form of communication by far. Now, the person was well-meaning. I know enough about myself not to respond to emails that perturb me, at least not quickly. So I didn't. It's been 48 hours, and I still haven't. Might not.

Lessons in life:
1. don't respond to emails that upset you. Talk to the person face-to-face. Things will only escalate with more emails, and you'll waste too much time trying to be diplomatic in writing, which is hard work.
2. don't over-react until you get the whole story. Then just act.
3. don't approach sensitive matters in an email. Emails are meant to be short (something most of us haven't learned).
4. don't gossip, and if you are, don't tell the subject of your gossip that you've bee gossiping about them! It makes them feel worse.

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