Gossip & Secrets

Big people talk about ideas.

Medium people talk about things.

Small people talk about people.

Read that again.  It’s a profound statement!

Several weeks ago, my oldest son Joe and I were having a phone conversation.  I was telling him that I’d recently signed up for Twitter and how much I was enjoying it.  (If you’re not familiar with Twitter, it’s a way to “follow” certain people and basically listen (read) their ideas.  I hope you’ll follow me at @iSpeakiWrite).

The people I choose to follow tend to be big thinkers.  I’ll never meet most of them, but I can read and think about the ideas that are making them big people.  Their thoughts tend to challenge me to bigger thoughts of my own.  I love it.

Joe signed up that day and then the next day sent me a text with the little quote that started this post.  He told me that I’d told him that years ago.  I don’t remember it, but I’ll happily take credit!

“Dad, Twitter people are big people.”  Out of the mouth of babes!!!  (Or in this case, a 30-year old man.)

Travelling around the country, I have the opportunity (or curse) of overhearing conversations in airports, airplanes, restaurants, and in places where I do business.  Far too often, people are having conversations right next to where I’m sitting and are totally unconcerned or aware that their discussions are being overheard.  Most of the time they’re strangers, but sometimes these are people who are talking to me about a problem or a person that they are struggling with in their lives.

A large percentage of these conversations are nothing more than gossip.  And almost always, the people are not saying nice things.  It’s a total turnoff to me.

I know this about people:

“Who gossips with you will gossip of you.”

If someone’s telling me about someone at work they don’t like, or talking behind their back, I’m thinking that they would talk behind my back too.  The sooner I can get away from them, the better.  I can promise you this—I’m not going to tell them anything that I don’t want to hear 100 miles away.

There’s a great rule of thumb in the Bible.  Ephesians 4:29 says, “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.”

Couldn’t have said it better myself!

So, a few questions for you to think about:

  • Do you talk mostly about ideas, things, or people?  Be honest with yourself.
  • Or, phrased another way—do you choose to be a big person, a medium person, or a small person?
  • How about your friends?  Do they talk ideas, things, or people, most of the time?  (The answer to this question could give you a little insight about the way you do life too!)

And remember this:

“The easiest way to keep a secret is without help.”

P.S.  If the title of this post caught your attention and you wanted to read it to get a little gossip, please don’t tell me.  I don’t want to have to start avoiding you.  :)


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  1. Matt Fagioli
    Matt Fagioli07-01-2011

    Maybe we should add… “amazing people give away ideas” (and even help you toward them)

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