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.
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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 each other’s strength.
Speaking your mind about someone can also result in "spontaneous trait transference. " According to psychologists, this is when people are perceived as possessing the traits they are describing in others.
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.
Gossip is a key social skill that helps ensure our healthy integration into human society.
Gossiping with somebody is a way of bringing people closer within your social group, checking that they share your views, and bonding over shared positions and judgements. The people you gossip most with, therefore, are the ones with whom you're the closest.
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.