Curious & Curiouser Podcast, Episode 78: When Tragedy Strikes Someone You Love & How to Empathize Without Surrendering Your Joy

Today, Tracey and I are taking on a slightly somber topic, as we discuss what to do in the wake of tragedy, particularly when it unexpectedly strikes someone you love. The question we start with is:  Are you allowed to be joyful when someone you know is grieving?

Specific topics discussed include:

  • Why it’s okay to compartmentalize grief sometimes
  • How grief and joy can coexist
  • Why you don’t have to (and shouldn’t) take on your partner or close friend’s emotions
  • How feelings are contagious
  • How to know what’s yours and what’s not yours emotionally
  • Why we can’t fix other people’s pain and what to do instead
  • How to deal with larger scale tragedies
  • Our inherent negativity bias and why we seek to avoid discomfort
  • Investment without attachment
  • And so much more!

As mentioned in the opening to this episode, there is a GoFundMe for Liz Winters of Sprout Wellness to which Tracey and I would truly appreciate you donating if you have even five dollars to spare. Liz is a repeat guest on the show and her family could really use as much support as possible right now. Thanks for considering!

As always, please consider leaving the podcast a 5-star review or rating in iTunes if you haven’t yet. Tracey and I would really appreciate it! Don’t forget, if you’d like to support the podcast by making a donation, you can do so through Paypal here. Thanks, y’all!

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Elizabeth Gilbert Ted Talk

Gilbert’s post about grief as a full-bodied experience 

Brene Brown empathy vs sympathy 

Inside Out movie 

Living Beautifully with Uncertainty and Change by Pema Chodron 

When Things Fall Apart by Pema Chodron 

Broken Open by Elizabeth Lesser 

I’ll Be Gone in the Dark by Michelle McNamara 

Episode 73 on Grief


Piquing Our Curiosity:

You’re Not Crazy, It’s Your Mother:  Understanding and Healing for Daughters of Narcissistic Mothers by Danu Morrigan, a book Tracey highly recommends for anyone struggling to make sense of their relationship with their mother.


Remember, if you have any topics or questions you’d like us to address in a future episode, comment here or email us at our joint email account: We’d love to hear from you!

Finally, one more request for you to please head over to iTunes and leave us a 5-star rating and/or review if you’re enjoying the podcast. Please note that you have to search for Curious & Curiouser in iTunes in order to leave a review — even if you’re already subscribed. Thanks so much for the support and for taking this annoying extra step to rate us. We really appreciate it!