Very early in my career, I learned that everything you say will eventually be repeated - and you must be 100% comfortable with every word that leaves your mouth. If you choose to talk negatively about someone behind their back, eventually that person will get word of what you have said.
Everything you say can and will be used against you.
I can remember the exact moment that I realized ALL of the gossip I was spreading, all of the rumors, and hate messages I was throwing around WAS being repeated - repeated back to the people I was gossiping about!
(Why, for so long, did I think the rumors I was spreading would stay only with the one person I told them to??)
Travel Back In Time about 6 years:
Waaaaaay back in the day ;) I was working at a salon in Indiana. The salon was busy, I worked with my friends, and knew most of the guests that entered the salon. I viewed most of my guests as friends, not just paying clients.
One of my guests (we will leave her name out of the blog for obvious reasons,) would come to the salon every 4-6 weeks faitfully for a cut & color. She brought her 13 year old daughter to the salon for cuts & color as well. They became good $$ customers of mine.
I remember before I knew her well, SHE would always make comments about working at night and being exhausted during day time hours. Eventually she pushed me to ask a simple question: "Oh, you work at night? What do you do?"
She was a stripper. A 44 year old stripper with a 13 year old daughter. And a dramatic love life. Oh, and flourescent green fingernails. A stripper that thought I was pretty which probably meant I had a good looking father. She wanted to know more about my dad.
Whoa. (i know!) A stripper step-mom?!?!?!
Each time she was in the salon, she would ask to see pictures of my dad. Each time she was in the salon I would tell her "Maybe next time." Of course this was always mixed among her stories of lost love, broken hearts, rich guys, boyfriend #1, and boyfriend #2. I could never focus on her stories of broken romance, instead my mind would race a hundred miles a minute - wondering if her 13 year old daughter watched her walk out of the house at night in fishnet stockings, lacy thongs, and stripper shoes!! AND I wondered what her daughter thought of those loooong green fingernails... and the playboy bunny imprinted on her thigh, and the fake tan! AND I could just not visualize thhose 44 year old saggy boobs jiggling around in anyone's face... for $$$!!
Nothing against strippers. I'm just sayin. That's where my mind went - it was completely riduculous and out of control.
This whole situation blew my mind (obviously!!) soooo I talked about it. I told my co-workers of the stripper with dreams of being my step mother. I told my friends, and I told salon clients of mine.
In fact, I can remember the day (very vividly) that 2 of my favorite clients/friends were in the salon shopping for some shampoo. They stopped me to chat... asked about life, updated me on their life... asked about my dad... (gasp) I had a GREAT story to tell them!!
I told these girls everything about HER. E-V-E-R-Y-T-H-I-N-G. In the middle of the shampoo aisle in the salon.
We said our good-byes, deciding we would all see each other soon. I walk away. Turn the aisle. And come face-to-face with HER. The stripper. In the next aisle. I knew instantly that SHE had heard everything. E-V-E-R-Y-T-H-I-N-G.
Instantly, I was nauseated. And looking for a story. Justification. Lies. EEK!~
SHE mentioned that she was in the salon just shopping for shampoo, and... that she had heard everything. Of course, she knew I was talking about HER. With lines like: "Like, Who wants a stripper for a mom" and "Isn't she too old to be a stripper anyway - plus she has a 13 year old" There was no doubt SHE was the person I was referring to.
Not sure how I got myself out of that situation, it's all a blur. I'm pretty sure she never came to see me in the salon again.
And, I'm pretty sure I have watched what comes out my mouth from that day forward.
Back to the present:
Unfortunately, gossip happens quite frequently in the beauty business. I happen to be employed in the beauty business. For various reasons, lately, I have been at the butt end of other peoples gossip. In fact, 3 different people, from 3 different sides of my work life have been heard talking smack about me. Interesting enough, that all 3 of them don't know me very well at all.
My plan of action is to not retaliate although, eventually, I may (discreetly) let them in on the fact that I know what they have said. Of course, I would allow them to know everything I know. I would allow their minds to always wonder exactly what it is that I do know.
Typically, I am not one to draw attention and drama, but lately I have been in the spotlight. What must the girl do to remove herself from the attention of others?
"...When you are seemingly diminished in some way and remain in absolute nonreaction, not just externally but also internally, you realize that nothing real has been diminished, that through becoming "less," you become more...." - Eckhart Tolle