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Sssssshhhhh!  It's A Secret!


Now I know that everyone has heard this at some point in their life - whether it be from a close friend, family member, or total stranger. I keep secrets for a living - what fun?!  I was talking to a girlfriend the other day and reminiscing about how many times we've heard our family members say "Did you hear about" such and such followed by "Don't tell anybody because I don't know if they want everybody knowing yet"  Usually the "big secret" is not a secret at all because everyone knows anyway.  Why do secrets even exist overall?  Well in my opinion, I believe that secrets serve a purpose in the secret keepers mind at least.  How many times have you told the "big secret" though?  I remember when the book "The Secret" by Rhonda Byrne came out and went nationwide after being featured on Oprah.  It sold 19 million copies largely in part to the fact that there was some "big secret" inside the 216 pages that I read twice.  Was it really something that should have been kept secret?  I guess not because 19 million plus their friends know now. 

Let me break down the reasons I believe that secrets exist into 4 basic categories:
1. Protect self and others from danger
2. Deter unnecessary attention
3. Build trust in relationships
4. Avoid possible humiliation

Now while it may seem that we are effective when keeping secrets in these four basic categories, remember that secrets also affect the secret keeper in various negative ways.  There can be an aftereffect of guilty feelings if the secret keeper has a conscious and the secret is harmful to other parties involved. If you try to keep too many secrets about yourself, you can end up living a secret life.  Another negative aftereffect is alienation or isolation from others.  I have not addressed all of the negative effects by all means.  But just remember while you are trying to help someone else by keeping their secret, you might be hurting yourself emotionally and physically.  Now don't keep this a secret - pass it on! 

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