Bittersweet: How Sorrow and Longing Make Us


Have you ever wondered why you like sad music? Found comfort or inspiration on a rainy day? Reacted intensely to music, art, nature, and beauty? Then you probably identify with a bitter­sweet state of mind. At least according to the author, Susan Cain. Susan’s new book, Bittersweet: How Sorrow and Longing Make Us is a thought-provoking exploration of deep emotions and the paradoxical pairing of birth and death, light and dark, and of course, bitter and sweet. A bittersweet state of mind can help us transcend our personal and collective pain by allowing us to acknowledge and release our painful emotions and open a gateway to creativity, connection, and love.

Here are a few of my favorite insights from the book to get you thinking:

  • Transform your pain into beauty and your longing into belonging.
  • Whatever pain you can’t get rid of, make it your creative offering.
  • Creativity has the power to look pain in the eye and turn it into something else.
  • Our oldest problem is the pain of separation; our deepest dream is the desire for reunion.

I was drawn to this book for so many reasons, but it especially resonated with me because this is what I often experience with my guests on The Virtual Campfire. I get them to explore the bittersweet flashpoints that have become their gateway to expressing their gifts.

Check it out here.


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