Talking behind people's back

As I sat in the waiting lounge of the car service centre and looked around. My eyes fell on a note on the wall that said, "If you like our service, tell all. If not, please tell us" in big font. Very reasonable, I said to myself. For, what use would it be if I went around telling everyone about the shortcomings of the service centre - the deficiency in its facilities or the people there - to those who are not concerned or cannot do anything to make it better by even an iota?

On the other hand, if I spoke highly of its good location, timely delivery or courteous staff, it would not only make it more popular, but probably benefit me in terms of a discount on my next service there, thanks to the goodwill my reference is bound to generate.

The reflective person that I am, I wondered on the possible outcomes of applying the principle in our daily interactions. Let's focus on the first part that of telling all about the things we like in or about someone.

I shared the clean work of my maid in my ladies' group while they were cribbing about her small annoyances. The next time she stepped into my house for work, she was glowing. It seems someone told her that I was praising her eye for neatness. I had always wanted to talk to her about her tardiness, but after that sharing, she not only began turning up for work on time with extra zeal but even offered help when I had guests coming in. I was amazed at the impact of a few good words that I had shared about her with others.

As for unpleasant things, I believe we should share our hurt feelings directly with the person concerned, rather than discuss it with others or in group gatherings, especially in the absence of that person. Too many relationships get tainted, some for life, when one party hears of the other's grouse against him through someone else.

In the Bible, Matthew 18:15 says "If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother." Additionally, I would say that even if the other person doesn't listen, you would still feel good having vented out to him. Well, that's the best you could do.

Human beings thrive on appreciation. And when that comes back as hearsay, the happiness is doubled. Let's talk good things about people behind their back, and make the joy show up on their faces for all to see.

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