“Ask your friends simple questions, like ‘What’s the best thing that happened to you this week?’ Asking about other people’s wins turns you into a joy spectator, which is so much better than being a disaster spectator.” – Terri Cole
When something bad happens to someone you dislike, do you feel a little glee inside? Maybe a lot of glee?
Or do you cheer when the villain in a movie or TV show gets what’s coming to them?
There is a German word for the feeling of joy we get from the suffering or misfortune of others: schadenfreude.
The other day, I wondered: is there an opposite of schadenfreude? There is, and it’s called freudenfreude. This is when you find joy in the success and happiness of others. (It’s an English word created from a German word where “freuden” means “joy.”)
Today’s episode is all about why we experience schadenfreude, its high cost, and how to find real happiness in the joy of others.
- 03:40 How envy causes us to derive joy from others’ misery
- 08:50 The cost of schadenfreude
- 10:00 Learn to stop using schadenfreude to cope with vulnerability
- 2:40 Ask simple questions to overcome your negativity bias
Find the downloadable guide I made to go along with today’s episode here.
Learn more about freudenfreude and cultivating bragitude in this New York Times article I mentioned during today’s episode!
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