On dealing with rumors?

How to explain ERE, arranging family matters
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Olaz
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On dealing with rumors?

Post by Olaz » Thu Apr 20, 2017 6:32 pm

It would seem I have attracted some negative attention from a handful of humans, just as I have attracted the deep love of a few others. Standing for something will do that perhaps. Today as I was casually walking through campus minding my own business, unbeknownst to me--at least until I peered upwards--I was being stared down by a rumor culprit and two cronies in their clique. Then, about an hour later, I passed by their favored dining hall table hideout, feeling sorry for their lot.

C'est dommage - un trajedy, vraiment.

It does bring about the useful question of how to manage negative, false rumors when they occur, and how to prevent them from beginning in the first place. I think the biggest factor I could work on is only allowing myself to be vulnerable and open with a few select people, rather than with most anyone that asks a question. Although I would like to change the western world's culture of walling ourselves off from other people, it might be best to only share "real" information with the people I truly trust or identify as trust-worthy. Another question worth reiterating is what to share in professional settings and what not share; this brings to light the "professionalism" post I made recently.

So: what are your strategies and themes in preventing and managing rumors, whether they're false, accurate, or somewhere in between?

The_Bowme
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Re: On dealing with rumors?

Post by The_Bowme » Thu Apr 20, 2017 7:14 pm

I think the approach is the one that is generally called for in game theory where mutual cooperation can yield positive outcomes, but there are significant risk of the other party defecting. That is to make small wagers (e.g., disclosures) to establish trust, and gradually increase the significance of the wager as the other party demonstrates a record of cooperating (e.g., not-blabbing). Eventually you can establish trust and intimacy, and since both parties value the mutual investment in the relationship, it becomes safer for such disclosures. In fact, I think this is the way relationships generally form in general w/r/t reciprocity, with honoring personal disclosures being just a subcase.

I personally do calibrate my disclosures to the level of intimacy in a relationship. It is also a matter of emotional intelligence, and knowing which topics are considered taboo in which circles, vs. which topics are harmless enough in a given context for taking an unusual view.

That said, there is something unfortunate about walking around with a facade. You can become complicit in society's taboo against your values. Maybe the right thing to do is speak out and pay the price. At a certain point, holding a value may mean paying for it, or admitting that you don't value it as much as you thought. Or to reverse it, the more you suffer for something, the more you are valuing it.

Edit: Although I don't think I've ever been much the target of rumors, so not much to say about what to do once they are circulating.

George the original one
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Re: On dealing with rumors?

Post by George the original one » Thu Apr 20, 2017 7:27 pm

You can never stop a rumour from starting. Managing them is the best option if you choose to engage and managing them with humour seems most effective.

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Riggerjack
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Re: On dealing with rumors?

Post by Riggerjack » Thu Apr 20, 2017 8:32 pm

Don't.

It is that simple. Don't deal with rumors, or the vapid people who live by them. Life is full of real challenges, there is no reason to waste your life on chasing shadows, or rumors.

Also, as with pranks, reacting attracts more of the same.

You are here. This is because your values don't align with social norms. No amount of activism on your part will change that, so get that idea out of your head. People will do what they want to do, and the best you can do is provide a counter example.

Live your values, but have the decency to let other live theirs.

scriptbunny
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Re: On dealing with rumors?

Post by scriptbunny » Thu Apr 20, 2017 8:44 pm

1) Build a good reputation. Most folks won't believe or spread nasty gossip about people they generally like.
2) Limit interaction with those circles that are known to generate or oft be mired in drama.
3) Be honest and non-defensive if someone confronts you about a rumor, whether it be false or true. Better to reveal a secret openly than to gain a reputation for being untrustworthy.
4) Do not retaliate.
5) Ignore the noise. Haters gonna hate.

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BRUTE
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Re: On dealing with rumors?

Post by BRUTE » Thu Apr 20, 2017 9:21 pm

it's time for Olaz to leave the pretend play world of college and enter the real world.

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Olaz
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Re: On dealing with rumors?

Post by Olaz » Thu Apr 20, 2017 9:43 pm

BRUTE wrote:
Thu Apr 20, 2017 9:21 pm
it's time for Olaz to leave the pretend play world of college and enter the real world.
What does this mean exactly?

RealPerson
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Re: On dealing with rumors?

Post by RealPerson » Thu Apr 20, 2017 9:55 pm

+1 Riggerjack
+1 Brute

Don't worry about it. Only worry about what is in your sphere of influence. What others say about you, especially on a college campus, is of zero consequence. Don't waste energy on it.

Discretion is a good idea in the work force. Even with people you believe you can trust, be careful with discussions about controversial topics like politics, religion, abortion, ERE or alternative sexuality. I have never regretted saying too little about controversial topics, but I have on occasion regretted saying too much.

As you enter the adult world, most people are too wrapped up in their own lives to worry about someone else's. Seriously: just forget about it.

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Gilberto de Piento
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Re: On dealing with rumors?

Post by Gilberto de Piento » Thu Apr 20, 2017 9:59 pm

I'm with brute. Once you are out of college people mostly sort themselves into groups. If you pick the right groups you can avoid these kinds of issues. Most people grow up, some never do.

I understand the sentiment about wanting to break down walls by sharing personal info but I'd keep ERE and any other non mainstream ideas mostly to yourself. People suck sometimes, particularly when money is involved.

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BRUTE
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Re: On dealing with rumors?

Post by BRUTE » Thu Apr 20, 2017 11:23 pm

RealPerson wrote:
Thu Apr 20, 2017 9:55 pm
Discretion is a good idea in the work force. Even with people you believe you can trust, be careful with discussions about controversial topics like politics, religion, abortion, ERE or alternative sexuality.
+1

millenials in general and Olaz in particular seem to exhibit the tendency to mark their territory with the scent of their personal preferences. surprisingly, many other humans find this inappropriate unless explicitly asked for.

maybe this relates to the "what is professionalism" topic, but brute has worked with plenty of humans where he had no idea about their sexual orientation, marital status, number of past sexual partners, sexual preferences or habits, political leanings, what they would do once they got in power.. it was simply about the work.

brute also strongly believes that certain views are way less mainstream than they may appear. these views are held by 85% of humans on college campuses (outside of STEM departments at least) and they are dominating media and culture, but they are NOT held by 85% of all humans. thus, transitioning from one of these polarized cultures into most regular cultures is akin to transferring from catholic school to regular cultures.

in short, Olaz could likely do worse than 1)giving fewer fucks about what other humans think of him, and 2)keeping virtue signaling out of the work context.

General Snoopy
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Re: On dealing with rumors?

Post by General Snoopy » Fri Apr 21, 2017 12:41 am

+1000 on Brute

It is not possible to say it better than Brute! Time to enter the real world.

7Wannabe5
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Re: On dealing with rumors?

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Fri Apr 21, 2017 6:22 am

There is a level on which I completely agree with what BRUTE conveyed. It is hard to imagine a tower more ivory than the one Olaz is currently inhabiting. But,there is another level on which I am wondering why the members of this forum seem to be in agreement that the world represented by corporate careerism is the world that is "real?" I would note that this is almost in direct contradiction to the first few sections of "ERE" on the topic of the "lock-in" and the "cave." Also, it has been my observation that although this flavor of "reality" does result in an environment where 85% of the population is apparently signaling fairly conformist, conservative, by definition "mainstream" points of view, what they actually do in private is likely a whole different can of worms. And this practice of situational conformity, although efficient and well-suited to some purposes, can lead to a lack of integrity and a wide-variety of the sort of dysfunctional behavior which was well-described in the novel "Peyton Place."

I mean there are other, granted less currently populated, worlds just as real. For instance, if Olaz was headed out to join a group of lumberjacks in Alaska, it is easy to imagine one of them telling him that the world of rugged labor in the wilderness was more "real" than an office job. If he was headed out to be apprenticed to a multi-millionaire who says whatever in the f8ck he wants, and he revealed that he enjoyed having sex with many women, the response might be "Who the f*ck doesn't. BTW, I need you to drive me home from the strip club tomorrow night." And it is easy to forget that every member of this forum is currently living in some level of ivory tower in a world where the mode human would be a young Asian female farm or factory worker upon whom, in total, our economy, or our delusion of real world, has become almost completely dependent.

IlliniDave
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Re: On dealing with rumors?

Post by IlliniDave » Fri Apr 21, 2017 6:57 am

Sure, "real" is a multifaceted thing and highly dependent on perspective. But in common usage there is a sense of the word "real" which denotes that wider collective outside of some particular insular place/culture.

Actually, I would be flattered if anyone I associated with thought enough about me, good or bad, to expend the energy to start a rumor, good or bad. You'll find as time goes on and you age not many people will think much about you unless you're standing in front of them, and even then you will often get only a sliver of their attention.

In a school environment ignoring rumors will cause them to go away and lessen the likelihood of new ones cropping up. It's mostly about status jostling for people of that age.

BRUTE pretty much has it right that if you broadcast yourself, you'll eventually rub someone the wrong way. The reason corporate culture is generally so bland is that it is a collection of disparate people that need to form a part-time community to get stuff done, often with high stakes. Being disruptive is almost always, well, disruptive, and counter productive. When you're on campus, study. When you're at work, work.
Last edited by IlliniDave on Fri Apr 21, 2017 6:59 am, edited 1 time in total.

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vexed87
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Re: On dealing with rumors?

Post by vexed87 » Fri Apr 21, 2017 6:59 am

All valid points here, if you want my two pence, raise the deflector shields and don't surround yourself with the kinds of people who spread rumours, that said, it's hard to fully disengage from all types of personalities, those who spread them, and those who take time to listen to them. You can find these kinds of people in all walks of life, in a way they are all necessary in some fundamental way to a healthy civic society, by raise the deflectors, I suppose I mean learn to live with it, and limit your exposure as much as practically possible.

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BRUTE
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Re: On dealing with rumors?

Post by BRUTE » Fri Apr 21, 2017 7:34 am

7Wannabe5 wrote:
Fri Apr 21, 2017 6:22 am
I am wondering why the members of this forum seem to be in agreement that the world represented by corporate careerism is the world that is "real?"
good point. brute threw the "real world" thing in there more as polemic to get Olaz to be a bit less of a millenial for once. of course, what's real lies in the eye of the beholder. for an academic living his whole life in the ivory tower, ivory is real. but effectively, Olaz seems to be starting a career in financial or similar work. that's a very different world than a university campus.
Last edited by BRUTE on Fri Apr 21, 2017 5:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Dragline
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Re: On dealing with rumors?

Post by Dragline » Fri Apr 21, 2017 8:04 am

Focusing on what you can control (and there are a lot of limits to that in these scenarios), being subject to rumors may be a symptom that you are too close to toxic people and/or not managing relationships appropriately (e.g., "over-sharing" with the wrong people).

Relationships are like food or other substances you consume, to a certain extent. If you choose garbage food/people and don't prepare it properly or relate to them properly, it/they could make you quite ill, or at least sub-optimal, until the offending food/substance/person/relationship is excised or minimized.

On a more insidious note, the fact that you would care about what these people think/say may also be a symptom that you are becoming like them. That adage "You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with" has many applications and variants, because it is based on sub-conscious mimetic desires. Making a conscious effort to stop caring about what most people think is a worthy endeavor, albeit often quite difficult for many people.

BTW, if you've ever managed people in a workplace, you know this stuff goes on everywhere there are groups of people that are essentially "on the same level." Rumors and other types of undermining are often used to enforce the "crabs in a bucket" norms of equality. It just gets more skillfully hidden by older adults.

Policing relationships is a life-long occupation, although it gets much easier as you become less reliant on them for sustenance and succor and develop better long-term ones. Consider it part of the ERE lattice-work.

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distracted_at_work
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Re: On dealing with rumors?

Post by distracted_at_work » Fri Apr 21, 2017 8:50 am

Put it to you this way, when you started your freshman year, would you care about rumors going around your highschool? I'd guess no.

In the meantime. I had a public student role within my university so I dealt with rumors all the time. Ignore ignore ignore. You have better things to do.

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fiby41
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Re: On dealing with rumors?

Post by fiby41 » Fri Apr 21, 2017 10:11 am

Dealing with backstabbers there is one thing I learnt
They're only powerful when you got your back turned

thrifty++
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Re: On dealing with rumors?

Post by thrifty++ » Fri Apr 21, 2017 8:39 pm

I think its really useful to give zero shits about what other people think of you. To an extent of course. Personally my approach is to care about the what people think of me to the extent there is a high level of strategic relevance. Eg what management thinks of me in the sense of having an effect on my income gathering and career advancement etc. The number of occassions that this matters seems to be quite infrequent and not too much effort is required to "keep up a likeable appearance". You can often also get away with a few eccentricities if you are kind to other people generally. Asides from that I think its extremely liberating to dump that wasted energy.

James_0011
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Re: On dealing with rumors?

Post by James_0011 » Sat Apr 22, 2017 9:41 pm

Have sex with hotter and more women than most guys your age and you wont give a fuck what they think.

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BRUTE
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Re: On dealing with rumors?

Post by BRUTE » Sun Apr 23, 2017 2:39 pm

same is true for making more money :D

7Wannabe5
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Re: On dealing with rumors?

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Sun Apr 23, 2017 5:10 pm

Same is true for being absent-minded to the point of complete self-absorption.

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Tyler9000
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Re: On dealing with rumors?

Post by Tyler9000 » Sun Apr 23, 2017 9:35 pm

IMHO, rumors are a reflection of the image you're presenting to others. By studying the mirror rather than ignoring it, you can learn a lot about yourself.

If the rumors are true, then own them. Sunlight is the best disinfectant. If you're ashamed to own them, then consider why that is and whether living a lie is sustainable. And if the rumors are not true, then stop for a moment and consider what you have done to make people think that about you. A lot of that comes down to emotional intelligence. Perhaps there are some simple steps you can take to present yourself in a way less likely to incite rumors.

Basically, be yourself while remaining thoughtful of others and you'll largely immunize yourself to rumors. But live a secret life while ignoring how you affect the people around you, and things could get ugly.

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fiby41
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Re: On dealing with rumors?

Post by fiby41 » Wed May 03, 2017 4:25 am


Loner
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Re: On dealing with rumors?

Post by Loner » Wed May 03, 2017 11:14 am

Smile. Let is slide. Being defensive will make you look weak, which will in turn make you more of a prey. +1 to humor.

Some Epictetus: If anyone tells you that such a person speaks ill of you, don't make excuses about what is said of you, but answer: "He does not know my other faults, else he would not have mentioned only these."

As for how to manage the internal side of it, here is some more Epictetus for you:

"In general, remember that it is we who torment, we who make difficulties for ourselves – that is, our opinions do. What, for instance, does it mean to be insulted? Stand by a rock and insult it, and what have you accomplished? If someone responds to insult like a rock, what has the abuser gained with his invective? If, however, he has his victim’s weakness to exploit, then his efforts are worth his while."

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