The Psychology Of Gossip: Why Talking Sh*t Makes You Happy
When we gossip, we gain “social capital” -- a secret weapon of sorts over those around us.
Even if we have no intention of using information in a harmful manner, simply having the information is satisfying.
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Knowing that others have flaws makes them more relatable. It makes them feel more likable and less intimidating, as they are just as vulnerable to the harsh realities of life as you.
It is a human trait to desire companionship and relationships so we value our acceptance and social placement. When we know things about others, it makes us feel included.
Participating in the ongoing conversations your peers have is an element of your favorable reception in the herd.
Sharing your viewpoints on other people with someone helps the relationship grow stronger.
We want to engage with people who share common opinions, no matter how snarky. You may not be discussing deep subjects, but you’re definitely having fun.
Friendships often begin with idle chit-chat that reveals common interests, which eventually leads to a relationship. Talking about mutual friends, coworkers and acquaintances helps friends to solidify their bond.
By sharing information, you’re demonstrating a level of trust that your new friend won’t repeat what you’ve relayed. In a way, it’s almost a test of a person’s character.
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If you gossip negative things, like insulting someone or talking down their achievements, it may put both you and the person you are talking to at risk of losing the group’s trust and eac...
Spontaneous trait transference works with positive talk. If you're discussing someone and you describe them as kind and generous, people are more likely to see you that way too.
Small talk and gossip help us build and analyze the relationships we have with other people, as well as work out each other's social standings and traits.
People's names trigger the brain in a unique way so you can recall information about them. Gossip works as training for the information gathering capacities of the brain.
Research also found that people were much better at processing information about people they had just met if they had large social groups. By talking with and about people more often, they were using those parts of their brains regularly.
Happy people tend to live active and somewhat busy lives. They meet up with friends after work, go on a hiking trip with the family on the weekend, and play tennis every Wednesday morning with a friend.
This busy lifestyle provides an unintended but powerful source of happiness: anticipation.
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Once you know people well enough to feel close, there is a tendency to not listen carefully to them, because you think you already know what they are going to say.
The sum of our daily interactions and activities continually affects us, so that we are not the same as we were the week before or even yesterday.
To accurately understand another person, we have to ask ourselves if this is really what the other person meant, and then to check it.
The closeness-communication bias can also keep us from allowing our loved ones to listen to us.
Its human nature to become complacent about the familiar. People will rather confide their most pressing and worrisome concerns to less familiar people because others are more likely to listen carefully, may ask the right questions and are less judging or apt to interrupt.
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