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In his inspiring New York Times bestseller Living Well, renowned talk-show host Montel Williams chronicled his personal battle against a life-threatening disease, the foods and regimen that countered his illness, and how everyone could benefit from his dynamic plan for better health.
Now, just as he shared the story of his physical triumph, Montel shares inspiration, advice, and a practical emotional wellness program so that readers can overcome personal obstacles to find the peace and love everyone deserves.
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Table of Contents
CHAPTER 1 - The Brightest and Darkest Places
CHAPTER 2 - A Journey of the Mind
CHAPTER 3 - Seven Breakthroughs on the Road to Happiness
CHAPTER 4 - A Journey of the Body
CHAPTER 5 - The Happiness Diet
CHAPTER 6 - A Journey of the Soul
CHAPTER 7 - Living Well Emotionally Well-Being Program
Living Well Emotionally
About the Authors
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Penguin Books Ltd., Registered Offices:
80 Strand, London WC2R 0RL, England
First published by New American Library,
a division of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.
First Printing, January 2009
All rights reserved
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Every effort has been made to ensure that the information contained in this book is complete and accurate. However, neither the publisher nor the author is engaged in rendering professional advice or services to the individual reader. The ideas, procedures, and suggestions contained in this book are not intended as a substitute for consulting with your physician. All matters regarding your health require medical supervision. Neither the author nor the publisher shall be liable or responsible for any loss or damage allegedly arising from any information or suggestion in this book. The opinions expressed in this book represent the personal views of the author and not of the publisher.
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eISBN : 978-1-101-01455-4
This book is dedicated to my wife, Tara,
for her endless and unwavering support.
I’d like to thank everyone who made this book possible, especially: my coauthor William Doyle, Tracy Bernstein, Melanie McLaughlin, Chris-tine McQuaid, Mel Berger, Richard Rosenthal, Keith McLaughlin, David Smith, Sonja Lyubomirsky, Christopher Peterson, Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, Martin Seligman, Jerome Wakefield, Allan Horwitz, Joseph Glenmullen, John Ratey, Robert Thayer, James Blumenthal, Joseph Hibbeln, Harold Koenig and David Meyers.
A Note to the Reader
Disclaimer: This publication is intended to provide helpful and informative material on the subjects addressed. It is sold with the understanding that the authors and publisher are not engaged in rendering medical, mental health, or any other kind of personal professional services in the book. The reader should consult his or her medical, mental health, or other competent professional before adopting any of the suggestions in this book or drawing inferences from it.
This book is not intended in any way to be a substitute for professional medical or mental health advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Never disregard professional medical or mental health advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read in this book.
The authors and publisher specifically disclaim all responsibility for any liability, injury, loss, or risk, personal or otherwise, which is incurred as a consequence, directly or indirectly, of the use and application of any of the contents of this book.
This book is about your happiness: how to understand it, how to cultivate it, and how to achieve it in your life.
I wrote this book because I am an expert on what depression and sadness feel like. You may be, too; you may feel overwhelmed or helpless, and you may have no one to turn to who understands your suffering.
Then I wrote this book for you. I’ve learned some amazing things about happiness that I want to share with you.
If you’re not depressed, but you’re just interested in the idea of being happier, I wrote this book for you, too.
The world is filled with narratives of personal depression. Many of these books have a common theme: depression really, really hurts. And there are countless books on happiness, too. But in this book I’m going to focus specifically on what you can do to reduce your sadness and/or depression and increase your happiness over the long term—based on my experience, based on the greatest wisdom of the ages, and based on the latest, most exciting medical and scientific breakthroughs.
In researching this book, my coauthor, Bill Doyle, and I reviewed three thousand years of human thought on human happiness, including the ancient Greek and Roman thinkers, Hebrew, Hindu, and Buddhist texts, the New Testament, the Koran, and the writings of the great minds of literature and psychology.
We reached out and picked the brains of some of the greatest research scientists, medical doctors, psychologists, and psychiatrists in the world today, including experts working in two exciting new fields: “happiness research” and “positive psychology.” We read hundreds of their most fascinating research reports and we discussed their findings with them.
And I have some wonderful news for you.
There are paths that you and I can take that can bring us through the forest of depression and sadness, and lead us toward the sunlit fields of emotional well-being, happiness, and joy.
I will take you on a journey to the brightest and darkest places of my life, and my experiences with happiness, anger, achievements, crises, depression, drugs, and therapy.
I will take you on a Journey of the Mind, a tour of the Emotional State of the Union today: America’s happiness, depression, medication, therapies, and trends, the big issues and controversies, and the best medical and scientific expert opinions.
I will take you on a Journey of the Body: the quest for emotional wellness through physical joy and the exciting new developments suggesting how exercise and diet can affect and improve emotional well-being, by elevating mood; by reducing stress, anxiety, and depression; and by increasing physical and emotional happiness.
And I will take you on a Journey of the Soul: the quest for spiritual happiness and how spiritual religious well-being is intertwined with emotional health.
Finally, I will tie it all together with the Living Well Emotionally Well-Being Program, a comprehensive program of insights, options, exercises, and ideas for achieving true joy and lasting emotional health.
In the course of my life, I have learned seven interrelated insights that changed my life for the better, and I believe they can change yours, too:
7 Insights for Living Well Emotionally
1. You own the definition of you, and you control the power of your own happiness. You are who you think you are, and you are as happy as you think you can be.
2. The power to conquer sadness and depression, and achieve happiness, lies inside you. Therapists and medications and external forces can make a difference, but the ultimate power belongs to you, nobody else. You are the master of your emotional destiny.