The Hidden Benefits of Cursing, Negativity, and Gossip
What you think of as your worst qualities can have some surprising upsides.
By Melinda Wenner
O, The Oprah Magazine | From the April 2010 issue of O, The Oprah Magazine
The old thinking: Feeding the rumor mill is a sign of insecurity.
The new wisdom: Gossiping can solidify friendships and strengthen your moral compass—so long as you're judicious about what you say and whom you say it to (dishing about Tiger Woods's latest mistress with your best friend: yes; spreading false rumors about your boss to half the office: no). Sharing juicy information with friends strengthens social bonds, and experts say gossip also informs us about what is acceptable and unacceptable behavior.