We all have vices; coping mechanisms that we become addicted to. Some peopledrink, some overeat, others gamble, and some people chose to talk shit in excessive amounts as their poison of choice.
As I try to make sense of all the ways I’ve ever tried to numb out and feel better, I’m realizing that criticism and gossip is the coping mechanism used by those who in some way operate from a place of fear, helplessness and victimhood.
In my personal experience with criticism and gossip, the payoffs were:
1. It allows us to stop associating our negative feelings with our own crap and temporarily attach our negative feelings to someone else’s crap.
(It’s a cleverly disguised blame-game. Essentially, it’s a behavior that passes the buck in the most passive aggressive way possible.)
2.You get to self-soothe while finding sanctuary behind the legs of our social acceptance for judgment and criticism.
3. It doesn’t disrupt denial which makes it an ideal coping mechanism.
If there is someone in your life who’s constant criticism of others is starting to wear on you, know this, it’s a desperate call for love.
Nothing more, nothing less.
If you’re tired of the drama, don’t engage in it. Criticism requires an audience; without it, it’s simply one person marinating in their own ridicule.
Every time you hear them talking poorly about another person, try to hear whispers underneath what they’re really saying. If you listen closely, the message is almost always “I am scared of my own vulnerability and have no idea how to keep myself safe”