The following is a rebuttal to a recent article on a major website with the headline “VII Healthy Sins, why being bad is good for you”.
This article stated that while gossiping, lying and generally being rude to others could ruin one’s reputation, a little moderate misbehavior might be beneficial. The running commentary that ensued was expected. How can bad behavior possibly be good for anyone? Here’s why it is not:
Nothing good can come from bad behavior whether it is in one’s personal life or in the workplace. Reviewing each of these “sins” will help to discover that there is nothing positive about being just a little bad.
- Gossiping – The article stated that talking about others is “key to reducing stress and gaining a mental edge, but only if you vent strategically, not maliciously.” Surely there are better ways to reduce one’s stress without speaking ill of another. Done strategically generally means doing something that was planned out, and whether it was intentionally malicious or not, it was still done with intent. Gossip can and usually does have a way of ruining the life of both the gossipee and the gossiper. Also discussed was the way gossip can strengthen the relationship bonds between one another. Continued gossip, especially in the workplace, can just perpetuate a situation and does not allow for one to move on. Strengthening ties is good, but in this case, it is done for all the wrong reasons.
- Envy – This green monster has a way of rearing its ugly head and can destroy long-term relationships between people. While this examiner can understand why the author of this article states that envy can help to stir thoughts of one’s own ambition, it can also backfire and end the relationship between two people when words of hate and jealousy are spoken. Damage control at this point is just a little too late and can make the workplace environment tense and intolerable.
- Swearing – Despite what researchers have found, profanity in the workplace is frowned upon, and in some cases, cause for time off without pay or termination. Frankly, who wants to be around or work for/with someone who swears all the time? Can anyone say “Hostile Environment”?
- Vanity – There is really no such thing as a “mild case of vanity”. When a person is vane, others are going to know it. Powerful motivator, huh? Congratulations on the personal inspiration! Too bad that it had to make the rest of the team feel even worse about themselves.
- Boasting – Ever hear of the words “be seen and not heard”? It is a common phrase used during the baby boomer generation; boasting was not something that came easily to people of this era. And to say that “bragging can feel as satisfying as food or sex”, just means that later generations have been raised to be self-absorbed, rude, and taught to make a big deal out of stupid things. What kind of egos are being created when people are rewarded for everything they do regardless of whether they are good at it or not? Has anyone found a person who can boast without offending someone else? Doubt it.
- Lying – Understandably little white lies, as long as they don’t bring harm to another, can be forgiven. However, to say that “honesty is not always the best policy” is bad advice mainly for the fact that lies perpetuate themselves and usually the liar is found out; thus losing credibility and confidence. In the workplace, that can damage an employee’s career for life. Being honest and diplomatic is a better course of action in the long run.
- Rudeness – The article attempted to explain that being rude in a situation where one helps another or protects oneself, but fell short in the reasoning. Clearly these events would require words that would more accurately describe a specific situation rather than a generic definition of “being a little rude to get through to them”. Rudeness in and of itself is annoying and by sheer definition, disrespectful. No one wants to work with someone who is rude, much less hang out with that person.
Perhaps the story was written to see the various reactions of the site’s readers. Clearly the multitude of comments showed the overall opinions on the topic to be opposite of the benefits the article was touting. No matter how anyone looks at it, gossiping, lying and being rude in addition to the other “healthy sins” offers no benefits to anyone and makes the person performing these behaviors looked at with disdain and disapproval.
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©2012 Susan Dusterhoft, All rights reserved. No part of this article may be reproduced without prior permissions from the author or Clarity Digital Group LLC d/b/a/ ovalpike.com.