Science Says Gossiping Is Good For You
The Debrief: Apparently, your social networking could seriously be improving your health
Good news for all you gossipers! Ignore everyone that tells you that having a good old natter/ rant/ bitch fest is bad and to keep it all in because it turns out that it’s good for you. And there’s (sort of) science to prove it.
According to Robin Dunbar who is a professor of experimental psychology at Oxford University, ‘the size of your social network will have a bigger impact on your survival than anything the doctors can throw at you.’ At last! Confirmation that all our socialising and spending more hours on our phone/hanging out with mates instead of being a productive human will pay off and we will live longer.
Basically, gossiping releases endorphins that make you feel great and more of a part of something, which is good for your mind, body and soul. If you still need proof that Robin is on to something, he went on to say in his speech at the Cheltenham Science Festival that ‘you can drink as much as you like, take as little exercise as you like, take as few pills as you like and it won’t make any difference… the most important thing that will prevent you dying is the size of your social network.’
So gossiping is what makes us human and helps us engage with the people around us so don’t be afraid of a bit of gossip-mongering because it will actually make people like and trust you more. Dr Jennifer Cole, from the Department of Psychology at Manchester University, has written about the short-term effects of gossiping on self-esteem and believes that ‘we know we are violating someone else’s privacy and it breaks social rules about politeness. But if people don’t gossip at all we don’t like them, we’re suspicious.’
So now you are armed with all this factual evidence to throw back at gossip-haters, go forth and gossip. Thank us when your endorphins kick in and you feel super healthy.
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