Overjoyed. Ecstatic. Tickled Pink
Just a few words to describe how I feel as I am writing this post.
Today I have the privilege to introduce you to the beautiful Michelle Bengtson and her BRAND NEW book Hope Prevails: Insights From a Doctor’s Personal Journey Through Depression. Not only do I get to introduce you to her but I also get to give away an author signed copy of her book to one of you beautiful readers! Read through to the end to see how you can win.
According to the CDC, over 18 million American adults suffer from depression each year. This problem affects 1 out of every 10 adults, and the number of individuals diagnosed is projected to increase by 20% each year! Depression can strike anyone – even doctors aren’t immune.
After treating patients for over 20 years as a board-certified neuropsychologist, Dr. Michelle Bengtson suffered her own bout of clinical depression. She understands the pain and despair that women feel. But, she learned how to overcome depression’s grip and walk victorious. Since then, Michelle has helped hundreds of women limit depression’s power over their minds and recover the life they used to enjoy.
Michelle’s personal experience and professional expertise reveal the unseen issues that keep women chained in despair, while handing readers the keys to freedom. Even though someone may seem hostage to depression, it never has to be the final destination. This compassionate book will help women address the following concerns:
- How to identify the early warning signs of depression.
- Know when to seek help and who to ask.
- Tips for teaching loved ones how to help someone battling depression.
- Provide assurance that victory over depression is always possible – from someone’s who’s been through it.
Tell us a little about the book.
Hope Prevails: Insights From a Doctor’s Personal Journey Through Depression was written from two perspectives: the first being that as a clinical neuropsychologist with over 25 years in the medical and mental health field, but the second as someone who has gone through depression personally and is now on the other side. I treated patients with depression for many years, but when I went through depression personally, I gained a whole new level of appreciation and compassion for their suffering. I also realized that while the treatment suggestions that I had made for them for so many years helped but were insufficient because I had ignored the spiritual component of depression. I came to realize that unless we address the spiritual aspect of depression, we are really just putting a band-aid on the condition and expecting it to get better.
Hope Prevails looks at what the enemy does to get us and keep us depressed, as well as what by the grace of God, the enemy cannot do to us.
How long did it take you to write the book?
It took me approximately nine months to write the book, but the book includes many stories from over the course of my entire life.
What was your favorite chapter or part of the book to write and why?
My favorite part of the book is the introduction which is called “A Letter to My Depressed Self” which is a letter that I wrote to my depressed self, from me on the other side of depression. I love this because it’s really written to anyone struggling with depression, and is filled with encouragement straight from God’s word. I have also turned it into a poster so that it could be hung on a wall as a visual encouragement to those still in the valley who need that daily or hourly reminder of God’s promises and the truths in His word.
What was your biggest challenge or hurdle in writing and publishing your book?
Hope Prevails is based on John 10:10 which says “The thief comes only to steal, kill and destroy, but I have come that they might have life and have it to the full.” The book really puts a spotlight on the enemy of our soul and what he does to get us and keep us depressed. Because of that, he was not very happy with me. Throughout the writing and publishing of “Hope Prevails” I encountered significant spiritual warfare that I had to battle.
Is Hope Prevails just written for someone who is struggling with depression?
NO! From the title it might sound like it’s just written for someone who is depressed, but actually it’s also helpful for friends and family who have loved ones who are depressed and they want to know how to help them through such a difficult time. I’ve also gotten feedback from readers that they have the principles in the book beneficial to them even when they don’t struggle with depression, but they just want to become closer to God and better able to identify the lies of the enemy that have influence their lives and how they perceive the world and interact with others.
Have you thought of writing a study guide to go with this book? It seems like the kind of book that would be conducive to a study guide format.
Yes, actually, I’ve just finished writing the study guide to go with Hope Prevails. It will be available through my website (www.DrMichelleBengtson.com ) and very soon it should be available on Amazon. At the end of every chapter in Hope Prevails I offer three or four homework style questions, but the study guide goes much deeper to help the reader really get to the core issues of things and find deeper help, hope, and healing.
If you could go back through the writing, publishing, and marketing experience would you do anything differently?
I like to think that all of our “firsts” are a teacher for all of our “laters.” I learned so much in the projects where I was a contributing author. And the same is true in writing and publishing my first solo project, Hope Prevails. For the most part, I’m very pleased with the process and how it went. The biggest thing I would do differently would be that I would worry less, and trust God and His sovereignty more. I recently heard someone quote Jennie Allen as saying,
“If God wants something to succeed, there isn’t anything you can do to make it fail, and if God wants something to fail, there isn’t anything you can do to make it succeed.”
What other writers/books inspire you?
The Bible says “My people perish for lack of knowledge.” I think it is crucial that we know who our enemy is and how to fight back. For that reason, I love Lisa Bevere and her book Girls With Swords. I also enjoy books by Robert Morris and Brennan Manning.
What do you like to do when you are not writing?
When I am not writing, there is nothing better than walking on the beach, boating on a lake, or watching a sunset or sunrise, or all the above during the course of the day. My soul is always most at peace when I’m near the water. Even better still when I’m with my family or close friends there.
Chocolate or Vanilla?
Most definitely chocolate, but if I have a choice, I’d pick sea salt caramel chocolate 😉
What’s your favorite thing to order from the Olive Garden?
Portobello Mushroom Ravioli with extra sauce and hot breadsticks!
On average, how many times a week do you hurt yourself trying to dance in the shower?
I’m not much of a dancer but I have been known to “make a joyful noise” when I thought no one was listening.
Is there anything you want to say to your readers?
Life is hard. The Bible tells us that we will go through difficult times. But God is faithful and it’s not over until He says it’s over. Because of Him, Hope Prevails!
Where can we buy your book?
On my website, www.DrMichelleBengtson.com, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Lifeway, CBD.com, Books-a-Million
Where can we get your book for FREE?
Twitter: http://www.Twitter.com/DrMBengtson (@DrMBengtson)
To order Hope Prevails: http://drmichellebengtson.com/hope-prevails-book/