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Archive for the ‘Self-Improvement’ Category

United States Self-Improvement Products and Services Market Report 2019: Examination of the $11 Billion Industry – PRNewswire

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DUBLIN, Oct. 15, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- The "The US Market for Self-Improvement Products and Services" report has been added to ResearchAndMarkets.com's offering.

This study examines the $11 billion market for motivational self-improvement programs and products that seek to improve us physically, mentally, financially or spiritually.

Discusses the market for: books, CDs/DVDs, audiobooks, infomercials, motivational speakers, public seminars, workshops, retreats, webinars, holistic institutes, personal coaching, apps, Internet courses, training organizations and more. Nature of the business, $ value/growth and outlooks for each market segment.

Major topic categories covered: weight loss/exercise, business/sales skills, business opportunities/investing, improving relationships, and general motivational.

The study analyzes market segments/industry structure, the market's $ size/growth (2003-2023 forecast), latest trends, latest survey findings of trade associations (ICF Coaching, Audio Publishers, National Speakers Assn.), the shift to Internet delivery of content, customer demographics, in-depth profiles of 60 top motivational speakers (Tony Robbins, Deepak Chopra, Phil McGraw, Dr. Laura, Brian Tracy, Suze Orman, Tom Hopkins, Robert Kiyosaki, Zig Ziglar, many others), top 100 infomercials list, 2019 status report of the U.S. weight loss market, and more.

Contains a 115-page chapter profiling the activities/specialties and revenues of the top motivational speakers and gurus, with in-depth profiles of the top 60. 100 in-depth competitor company and guru profiles:

Key Topics Covered:

1 Introduction: Study Scope & Methodology

2 Executive Overview of Major Findings

3 The Motivational Speakers Market

4 The Personal Coaching Market

5 The Direct Response Market: Infomercials

6 The Self-Improvement Books Market and New Age Bookstores

7 The Self-Improvement Audiobooks Market

8 Holistic Institutes & Training Organizations

9 The Public Seminars Market

10 Status Report of the U.S. Weight Loss Market

11 Reference Directory of Information Sources

Companies Mentioned

For more information about this report visit https://www.researchandmarkets.com/r/883xrv

Research and Markets also offers Custom Research services providing focused, comprehensive and tailored research.

Media Contact:

Research and Markets Laura Wood, Senior Manager press@researchandmarkets.com

For E.S.T Office Hours Call +1-917-300-0470 For U.S./CAN Toll Free Call +1-800-526-8630 For GMT Office Hours Call +353-1-416-8900

U.S. Fax: 646-607-1907 Fax (outside U.S.): +353-1-481-1716

SOURCE Research and Markets

http://www.researchandmarkets.com

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United States Self-Improvement Products and Services Market Report 2019: Examination of the $11 Billion Industry - PRNewswire

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Unique Self-Improvement Book ‘The Truth About Love and Fear: Love Controls Our Lives, Fear Determines How We Will Live It’ Presents New and Radical…

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Rudolf Eckhardt's new book provides a spiritually focused perspective on human psychology that looks at fundamental emotional forces which drive the sense of finding harmony

SYDNEY, Oct. 14, 2019 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ --Author Rudolf Eckhardt presents new, radical, spiritually focused and unconventional ideas that have found a realistic application in life in his new book "The Truth About Love and Fear: Love Controls Our Lives, Fear Determines How We Will Live It." The information and ideas featured in the book are all based on Eckhardt's 28 years of experience and proven results with his patients through his Core Belief Therapy.

"The Truth About Love and Fear" details Eckhardt's idea that one needs to change who they are to permanently change one's life. Instead of just changing what we do, we need to change who we are because the relationship we have with ourselves is that one we have with everyone else. By making this mental transition, we create the opportunity to live the way we ultimately want. Readers will learn how they can live their life without their issues and insecurities by recognizing that fear is the driving force behind everyone's negative life and relationship experiences.

Eckhardt reveals how fear sabotages our ability to be the authentic self, we were born to be, and how it prevents us from fulfilling our human potential as a consciousness, a human being, a partner and a parent. He also explains how unconditional love, acceptance and trust are the essence of our spirit-consciousness, which provides a positive directive on how to live true to our unique nature. Even though unconditional love can never be extinguished as the central force of our consciousness, fear will always seek to dominate our senses and demand we respond to its call.

"My goal for this book is to help everyone find the unique, authentic and spontaneous self they were born to be, by releasing their fear-based, limiting self-beliefs, and thereby give expression to the full potential of who they are meant to be," said Eckhardt.

Love and fear are the most fundamental emotions in life that underpin every aspect of our lives and relationships and yet they are the least understood. "The Truth About Love and Fear" explains how fear is a consistent part of our issues and insecurities and how it takes control over our perception, thoughts, feelings and behaviors. Eckhardt gives step by step explanations, life and relationship examples so that you can gain the clarity and the practical tools you need to take fear out of your life.

To learn more please listen to the Podcasts Core Truth 30 episodes, available free on your mobile.

"The Truth About Love and Fear: Love Controls Our Lives, Fear Determines How We Will Live It" By Rudolf Eckhardt ISBN: 978-1-5043-1011-6 (sc); 978-1-5043-1010-9 (e) Available through Balboa Press, Amazon, Barnes & Noble and TheTruthAboutLoveAndFear.com

About the author In 1992, Rudolf Eckhardt independently developed the Core Belief Therapy. His philosophy of how humans create their own experience of life and relationships rises out of more than 28 years of work as a therapist with many different nationalities in Australia and other parts of the world. Eckhardt has lived in Australia since 1963 after migrating with his family from the Netherlands. He currently lives in Bondi, NSW where he continues his work as a therapist using Core Belief Therapy and is in the process of writing six additional books including his next one, "The Truth About Relationships" which is geared toward dealing with relationship issues of women and men.

For Interviews & Book Review requests: Grace Bywater LAVIDGE gbywater(at)lavidge(dot)com 480.998.2600

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Unique Self-Improvement Book 'The Truth About Love and Fear: Love Controls Our Lives, Fear Determines How We Will Live It' Presents New and Radical...

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Living With Yourself Doubles the Paul Rudd, Doubles the Fun – Vulture

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Paul Rudd as Miles and also, Paul Rudd as Miles in Living With Yourself. Photo: Netflix

In the new Netflix series Living With Yourself, debuting Friday, a trip to a top-secret spa results in the generation of two Paul Rudds which, on the surface, doesnt sound like a problem. Who could object to double the Rudd?

But Living With Yourself which stars Rudd as Miles Elliot, a middle-aged marketing executive who seeks out self-improvement therapy and winds up being cloned goes deeper than its surface might suggest. Given Rudds gift for comedy and the shows premise, this series, which starts streaming October 18, could have easily been a shenanigan-filled sitcom filled with misunderstandings and mistaken identities. But as created by Timothy Greenberg, whose writing and producing credits include The Daily Show With Jon Stewart, The Detour, and Wyatt Cenacs Problem Areas, and directed by Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris of Little Miss Sunshine fame, its something odder, darker, and more genre-fluid. The best way to describe the tone of Living With Yourself is to say that it possesses the existential concerns of series like Forever or The Good Place, the designed-for-binging narrative style of Dead to Me, and the cockeyed tone of a Charlie Kaufman script. Its Eternal Sunshine of the Cloned Mind.

The first time we see Miles he is emerging from what appears to be a shallow grave where hes been buried and cloaked in cellophane. In Twin Peaksish parlance: Hes not dead, wrapped in plastic. An immediate flashback to 24 hours earlier explains how he wound up in that state while providing some context about who Miles is: a marketing pro whos out of ideas; a disengaged husband who has had trouble starting a family with his wife Kate (Aisling Bea of This Way Up); and a guy devoid of enthusiasm and energy. Basically, hes the word meh in human form.

When Dan (Youre the Worsts Desmin Borges), a co-worker whos been crushing it at the office, tells Miles that he became a better version of himself after a trip to an elite, referrals-only spa, Miles takes Dan up on the recommendation to try it himself. In short order, Miles is paying $50,000 to have his DNA rebuilt in stronger form, a process that involves him being put under anesthesia by a pair of supposed scientists who seem panicked just as hes drifting into slumber. When he wakes up, he suddenly finds himself buried alive in a remote wooded area, swathed in the aforementioned cellophane and wearing nothing but a diaper. When he finally gets back to his house, Miles discovers that Miles is already there Cloned Miles, that is. Due to a glitch in the spas process, Original Miles managed to survive the procedure, which does not normally happen. That means there are two Mileses walking around, or, as I referred to them while watching Living With Yourself, Hot Paul Rudd and Slightly Less Hot Paul Rudd.

In the interest of avoiding spoilers, I wont go into too much detail about what happens beyond that introductory setup, other than to say that the benefits of having a double are quickly outweighed by complications that creep into all aspects of Miless life, including, most significantly, his marriage. At first, the prevailing question that hangs over the show is: How is Miles going to deal with this situation? It seems impossible to contend with having a duplicate forever, without someone, at some point, finding out that there are two Miles instead of one. But as the episodes progress, they become more interested in exploring the notion of what it really means to want to be better, and questioning whether a best version of ones self is even possible.

Living With Yourself is a fast and easy binge, which doesnt sound like a compliment but is meant as one. With the exception of the finale, which runs for 35 minutes, each of the eight episodes clocks in at under 30 minutes, which keeps the twists coming at a welcome pace. Within that framework, the show feels breezy but also smart, entertaining but thought-provoking at the same time. Given our societys forever obsession with self-improvement, its not so hard to imagine a spa like the one in the show actually existing; for all I know, one exists in some strip mall right now. Greenberg, Dayton, and Faris have fun with that idea, but they take its implications seriously. The result is a dramedy that shifts easily between moments of comedy, seriousness, and suspense. Every episode ends on a cliffhanger of sorts, which practically demands that you succumb to Netflixs invitation to start the next episode.

Another thing that makes Living With Yourself so watchable is Rudd, one of the most inherently likable actors on the planet. As soon as he shows up onscreen, youre on his side,and when there winds up being two of him, youre on both of his sides. The fact that its so easy to distinguish between the two iterations of Miles is a testament to how good Rudd is here. There are some cosmetic differences between the two, the chief one being their hair Original Miles has his combed forward, while Clone Miles has a do thats been visibly tszujed but Rudd also carries himself differently depending on which genetic product hes inhabiting. As Original Miles, he slouches and plods through life, looking like any schlub you might pass on the street (a pretty good-looking zhlub, yes, but still a zhlub). When hes Clone Miles, he strides straight-backed from every point A to every point B. As the better version of himself, he glows in a way that suggests he could conceivably, well, star in a Marvel movie. At times, the two Miles looked different enough in the same scene that I wondered if Rudd shot them at different times. In a recent interview with Greenberg, soon to be published on Vulture, I was assured it was not.

Rudd is really good at being silly and goofy, but he resists the temptation to steer into that for Living With Yourself, which is much more dry and deadpan. In a way, Rudd is playing the straight man straight men? to an absurd situation, and he does it with such natural ease that you dont even think about all the things he had to mentally juggle to pull off all the moments that require him to play against himself. This is hardly the first series or movie to cast an actor in a dual role, but the seamlessness of the execution is impressive.

Theres a moment in the sixth episode when Original Miles, facing a professional conundrum, asks himself the question: What would you do if you were you? Like Living With Yourself as a whole, the line is funny while raising an important philosophical question, one that guides the whole series: How would the best, most enlightened version of yourself, the person youve always wanted to be, behave in a tough situation? Living With Yourself, among other things, suggests that maybe you should start searching for the answer by looking within, rather than entering a situation that makes you, and potentially others, see double.

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Living With Yourself Doubles the Paul Rudd, Doubles the Fun - Vulture

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How This Guy Lost 100 Pounds Without Setting Foot in a Gym – menshealth.com

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A bad breakup forced Robert Sean Grady Jr. to reflect on himself, and realize that if he was going to find happiness in love, he needed some important self-improvement. The 28 year-old medical record software specialist from Wilkes Barre-Scranton, Pennsylvania, had put a lot into the relationship, but when it soured he decided to work on himself. He also wanted to improve his hockey stamina.

Grady remembers always being the chubby kid, thanks in part to poor diet. Through high school he was overweight, the target of teasing from other students. After graduating, he dropped 30 pounds, bringing him down to 240. He got a girlfriend, but feeling miserable in the relationship, he turned to food as an escape from his unhappiness. My early and mid-20's weren't my best times, unfortunately, he says, and by 24 he weighed 340 pounds.

I don't think I really understood just how big I was, he says. He was still playing hockey and golfing with friends, not fully acknowledging his size. I knew I was overweight, but I didn't take it seriously.

Then came the Christmas breakup. Grady had already stopped drinking soda. Why drink your calories when you can eat something delicious? he says. He was about 290 pounds and ready to slim down. He downloaded MyFitnessPal to calculate his daily calorie intake (about 1900, but hed hit 200-300 less), aiming to lose 2 pounds a week. He tossed out all the sweets and junk food in his houseliterally throwing it away.

Revamping his diet was the biggest focus. He drinks mostly coffee and water now. His breakfast might be a Clif bar and coffee, or a ham, egg, and Swiss sandwich on wheat toast. Lunch is a turkey or ham sandwich with a cup of berries. His dinners vary; he tries to leave room for extra calories, and quesadillas have become his go-to meal. He developed a taste for spinach and mushrooms, both filling and high in fiber. He also praises slow-cooking, including health chili recipes, for helping him meal plan.

Simply cutting calories had him dropping weight quickly. He went from 290 down to 230 in about ten months. (Earlier, over the course of three years, hed cut from 340 to 290, for a total of 110 pounds lost over four years.) There were some ups and downs, but you cant argue with the results.

And to be honest, he says, I still haven't taken a step in a gym. He plays hockey two or three times a week, takes half-hour walks on his lunch break, and walks trails near his house after work. Most of his progress, though, he owes to a revamped diet.

Hes still getting used to his new size. I still feel inside like the fat guy I always was, he says. It helps to realize he can fit into 36-inch waist jeans, down from 44 at his largest. I feel incredible physically, he says. It's just the mental and emotional part that people don't take into account, and I'm trying to give myself more credit than I have.

With his newfound confidence hes met a great new partner, Barbara, who he credits as making his whole transformation worth it. Hes still aiming to get under 200 pounds, where he hasnt been since early high school, and start using weights to tighten up his body. Self improvement, he says, is never finished.

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How ‘The 5 Love Languages’ Became the Language of Love We All Know (and Love) – VICE

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In college I had a sort-of boyfriend whose affection I wanted very badly. Approximately 75% of our relationship took place in my head. When I came down with a bronchial infection, I saw it as a heaven-sent opportunity for us to finally really connect. Lying on the futon-mattress-on-the-floor which was my bed, I might as well have been rubbing my hands together in anticipation of how he would care for me. Through that care, our love would blossom. I could already taste the chicken soup.

It didnt play out as Id hoped. When I called him and asked, sickly-yet-cutely, if he could bring me some soup, he seemed confused by the request. In fact, he expressed his bewilderment more eloquently than he had ever expressed anything to me before. The symbolic importance of the soup appeared to be completely lost on him. If I was sick wouldnt it be best if he left me alone? Maybe we could hang out again when I was feeling better? I remember feeling humiliated, like Id been stood up on a date.

I diagnosed him as immature, but Dr. Gary Chapman, author of the blockbuster, perennially best-selling relationship advice book The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love That Lasts, would probably have read it differently. He would have explained that we were speaking different love languages. I was and remain someone who loves small acts of consideration. Not everyone thinks a plastic container of soup can contain heavy romantic overtones, but I do. Maybe my erstwhile boyfriends love language was something different, like gift giving, or physical touch.

Chapmans Love Languages, first published in 1992, argues that many relationship conflicts can be explained by his theory of romantic miscommunication. (Later editions of the book extended the love languages doctrine to apply to all kinds of relationships, from parents and children to co-workers.) Theres a universal human need to feel loved, he writes in the book. But he takes this platitude further; the premise of his wildly influential life's work is that each of us have a love language that we use to express love, and that this is usually this is the way we want to be shown love, too. Two people in a relationship might express love to each other using different languages, and this would make it hard for them to understand each other. Chapman advises us that figuring out our love language can help us ask for the type of love we need. For the uninitiated, these are: quality time; gift giving; words of affirmation; acts of service; and physical touch. Not sure what your love language is? Just take this easy quiz. Im an acts of service, with a words of affirmation rising.

Many people find this theory and these categories cheesy. The appeal is, shall we say, broad. Describing oneself in terms of a type strikes some people as pretty reductivestupid, even. But the simplicity of the love languages is key to its phenomenal success.

Twenty-seven years after the Love Languages was first published, its influence continues to grow. With almost every consecutive year, the book breaks its previous years sales record. It has now sold over 12 million copies and has been translated into 51 languages, most recently into Arabic for a Saudi Arabian edition. Since its publication, the concept of love languages has seeped into the collective consciousness, to the point that today, as a pop-psychological idea, the term has become ubiquitous, one people even unfamiliar with its origin understand.

In the West we have an affinity for classifying ourselves into types, and the love languages have joined the Myers-Briggs personality test as a go-to romantic rubric, as familiar to many people as the twelve signs of the Zodiac. Theyre constantly referenced in popular advice columns, and on blogs. In the last few months alone the love languages have figured in interpersonal drama on reality shows such as Love Island, Are You the One? and Real Housewives of the Potomac. People riff on the concept constantly, extending the metaphor far beyond its intended, abstract purpose. Wine-making is a love language. Fried cheese is a love language. Baseball pitchers are a love language. Toni Morrison is a love language.

Gary Chapman never planned to be a self-help guru capable of this kind of impact. 80 years old, he has been a pastoral counselor at a Baptist congregation in Winston-Salem, North Carolina for 48 of those years. His Baptist faith informs his belief in the importance of long-term commitmenthe has been married to Karolyn J. Chapman since they were in their early twentiesbut you dont need to be a Baptist to appreciate his practical approach to making it work. Most of us here on Earth hate feeling vulnerable, and expressing the need to be loved is an exquisitely unpleasant flavor of vulnerability. Its the pulpy center of love-maintenance that we avoid at all cost. Wed rather quit and start fresh with someone new than poke that pulp.

The 5 Love Languages is one of the few popular relationship advice books that shows us a way to maintain a relationship without advising us to turn inward and self-optimize. The love languages function as a clever rhetorical bait-and-switch that allow us to be honest about our needs without opening up the abyss of vulnerability that, unfortunately, exists within all of us. Saying I need more attention from you is painful, but saying my love language is quality time is somehow less so. The love languages might be cheesy, but their most profound wisdom is an underlying truth that Chapman might not have even meant to convey: Asking for love is the worst, he suggests, but we need to do it.

Love, unlike capitalism, doesnt require continuous growth to survive. The economy of love is based on maintenance, not growth, and born capitalists like us Americans would much rather create and grow something new than maintain something that already exists. To be loved, we dont need to keep improving and updating ourselves, coming up with new personality traits and skills with which to surprise and entertain our loved ones. But the hard work of self-improvement is easier for many of us to swallow than the hard work of maintaining a long-term partnership, as exemplified by your commitment-phobic ex or your recently divorced sister.

Westerners believe in the redemptive power of reinvention. We promise ourselves that next time it will be different. This belief is the essence of consumer culture, and its tempting to see relationships in the same way as we see consumer goods: as things that are supposed to make us feel good. Chapman sees through this fallacy because hes a Baptist, but as the success of his book and now brand shows, you dont have to believe in a God to agree with him.

"Practical suggestions" for how to practice the love languages in your life on any given week

The first golden age of self-help literature in the United States came during the 60s and 70s, when books like Thomas A. Harris Im OKYoure OK provided moral support to conventional middle-class Americans who felt unsure of how to navigate the new social and sexual mores that had arisen from the 1960s counterculture.

But by the '90s, many veterans of the counterculture had settled down. Maybe the sexual experimentation of the '70s was exhausting, right down down to The Joy of Sex's very groovy illustrations, because in 1992, two of the best-selling relationship self-help books of all time were published: The 5 Love Languages, and John A. Grays Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus. Both books are fundamentally conservative; Men Are From Mars argues that men and women have different natures, while the Love Languages is dedicated to making marriages last. (Divorce is scarcely mentioned as an option.)

Men Are From Mars has sold approximately 15 million copies to date, making it the best-selling relationship self-help book of all time. But based as it is on a set of gender stereotypes that many 10-year-olds could handily dismantle in 2019, it hasnt aged well, and as such, its sales have fallen off in recent years.

In a world hell-bent on trying out new stuff until the world ends, whatever the cost, Chapmans vision of accepting each others need to be loved is downright radical.

In contrast, Love Languages continues to pick up speed. During its first year of publication, the book sold about 8,500 copies, far exceeding the expectations of its publisher, Moody, a division of the nonprofit Moody Bible Institute; Love Languages itself is published by their more secular imprint started that same year, Northfield Publishing. The following year, the number doubled. In 2009, sales hit 5 million copies, and Moody relaunched the Love Languages with what they called their most aggressive marketing campaign in a decade. As part of the new campaign, John Hinkley, the director of marketing at Moody at the time, remarked that our goal, our vision is to help reduce the number of divorces. As a nonprofit, Moody uses the books proceeds to fund the Moody Bible Institute, which exists to educate and equip students for Christian ministry.

The books initial success was largely thanks to sales at Christian bookstores, but the relaunch pushed it squarely into the mainstream. In 2011, Elizabeth Hasselbeck may have been a linchpin in the books crossover secular success when she held up her copy of the book on the View, announcing that it had saved her marriage. Two years later, Oprah made its place of honor in our culture official by inviting Chapman onto an episode of Oprahs Lifeclass. (For those wondering, Oprahs love language is words of affirmation.)

Now, the love languages are a full-on brand, with an app called Love Nudge introduced this year that "will help you put the concepts of The 5 Love Languages into action in ways that are easy, obvious, and satisfying," radio programs, and conferences. But getting in touch with Chapman is easier than youd think, considering hes been on the New York Times best-seller list on and off for more than half my lifetime. In the days leading up to our interview, friends eagerly sent me questions they wanted him to answer, mostly to do with his feelings about the rules around physical touch, the love language that some people (myself included) had always understood as a cute euphemism for sex. Are any of the languages more powerful than others? Does Chapman think of them hierarchically?

Over the phone, I found Chapman to be friendly and indulgent, though when questions dont appeal to him, he issues forth a good natured chuckle that means no comment. Talking with him is remarkably similar to reading his book; he speaks with a drawl, and has a folksy, unpretentious manner befitting a man of religion but perhaps not of someone who has risen to the level of success he has.

Chapman studied anthropology in college, and told me hes remained fascinated with cultural nuances. The first foreign edition of Love Languages was in Spanish, and Chapman wasnt sure it would work in a translated edition; it became a best-seller. The success of future foreign editions has reinforced his belief that the need to feel loved is a human universal.

Chapman has published many companion editions to the original book, including a Military Edition, an edition for teens, one for families raising children with special needs, and a book about using the languages in the workplace (theyre languages of appreciation in that context, though). If you take the online quiz to determine your love language, you can sign up for Chapmans weekly newsletter, which comes full of practical tips for integrating love language awareness into your daily life. Is your partner a physical touch person? Try kissing them good morning and goodnight, each day for a week. Before you know it, Chapman reminds us, youll have established a new habit.

Much of the advice seems like common sense, but the newsletters almost always contain a wholesome Easter egg like, If your spouse leaves their laptop open, change the desktop background (if you don't think they'll mind) to a picture of you together. Overlay text on the picture that says, I Love You. (This was offered as a tip for showing love to people whose love language is words of affirmation. In Chapmans world, we have nothing to hideon our laptops or anywhere else.)

Chapman deliberately kept his books Christian message subtle so that more people would read it. (After submitting a manuscript to Moody Press in the 70s that he had been using for his marriage seminars, and initially being rejected, he would publish two much more religiously focused relationship books before the Love Languages took off, Toward a Growing Marriage, and Hope for the Separated.) Some people tell me they didnt know I was a Christian until they got to the end of the book, which is fine, said Chapman. Toward the end of the book, I say something to the effect of, what Ive given you is information. I cant give you motivation, but Ill tell you how I got my motivation. And I have a paragraph about my relationship with God, and how that changed my relationship with people.

The love languages, Chapman maintains, apply to everyone, regardless of religious belief. He admits that many men I know will say, I know my love language! Its physical touch! But Id argue its often more subtle than that. The gender neutrality of the languages means that the book can make sense for same-sex couples, nonbinary peopleanyone. I relate to people who seek my counseling as human beings, he says. So if I can help same sex couples in their relationships, thats good.

Chapmans religious background asserts itself through what it omits rather than what it states.

The world of the love languages is simpler than the world most of us live in. Theres no manipulation, or duplicitousness, or gaslightingjust people trying to fulfill the basic human need to feel loved, or, as Chapman puts it, to fill up their love tanks. Chapmans old-fashioned family-values vibe turns some people off. But its resistance to a vision of perpetual self-improvement makes the book quietly subversive.

Never stop growing, contemporary society implores us. Youre a badass! Be awesome! Be bold and courageous. Go out and claim what you deserve! Meanwhile, Chapmans love languages encourage us to focus our attention and care on what we already have. He may have been compelled to write the book by a Christian belief in the moral victory of long-lasting marriage. But this kind of conservatism can also be understood as oriented towards sustainability rather than waste. In a world hell-bent on trying out new stuff until the world ends, whatever the cost, Chapmans vision of accepting each others need to be loved is downright radical.

The love languages have achieved the status of clinical legitimacy without having been the product of any kind of actual research beyond Chapmans own observations as a church counselor. In 2006, two academic researchers conducted an empirical study to determine whether the love languages model generated consistent results of improved relational maintenance. Although the study wasnt completely conclusive, the researchers did find that using the love languages model led to a close match with improved relationships.

But whether or not theres empirical evidence to back them up, the love languages are a fully integrated part of the American therapeutic landscape, even among therapists who dont necessarily intend to use them.

Ive never read the book, but couples will refer to it in sessions, said Avi Klein, a psychotherapist with a couples therapy practice in Manhattan. Its a vehicle for people to communicate about yourself to someone else. Its a way to ask for what you need. I think people try to use the love languages in a positive way.

All of Chapmans 5 Love Languages mediathe purple-covered book that started it all in 92, the email newsletters, and his many subsequent bookstake for granted that once weve learned our partners love language, we will work hard to learn how to speak it. The underlying assumption is that a little love language elbow grease is all it takes to keep a long-term relationship running smoothly. And, more importantly, Chapman seems to believe that speaking your partners love language can solve almost any problem. You cant make someone want to speak your love language, he said. The best you can do is try to speak theirs, and hope it softens their heart. In most cases this seems reasonableis a little more quality time, or a few more words of affirmation, ever too much to ask?

The book starts to feel a little weaselly when it gets into the love language of physical touch. In a book with religious overtones, physical touch seems like the closest stand-in for the role of sex in a relationship, a way of shying from taking about sex directly but nonetheless highlighting it as important. Sex is much more complex than complimenting and and gift-giving.

But sex, Chapman argues, isnt necessarily part of the love language of physical touch. Lets not equate the love language of physical touch with sexual intercourse, Chapman said when I brought this up. When I meet people who tell me their love language is physical touch, I might ask them, Do non-sexual touches make you feel loved? Let's say your wife takes your hand while youre walking across the parking lot from the car to the mall. Or how about, she puts her hand on your shoulder while shes pouring you a cup of coffee.' If these forms of touch, which are loving but not sexual in nature, dont make you feel lovedthen physical touch is not your love language! People who like sexthats not necessarily their love language.

Chapmans religious background asserts itself through what it omits rather than what it states. Sexual preferences, according to Chapmans worldview, are not necessarily relevant to expressing and receiving love. Coming up with new ways and places to touch can be an exciting challenge, writes Chapman in the chapter on physical touch. If you have not been an under-the-table-toucher, you might find that it will add a spark to your dining out. Chapman goes on from here to suggest all kinds of touching, none of which are the kind that happen in private. It feels a bit like taking a sex ed workshop with Ned Flanders.

Some readers might have to go off-piste from Love Langauges doctrine here, either by considering physical touch inclusive of sex, or by thinking of sex as something that happens as part of other love languages, like quality time or even, lets be honest, acts of service. Its a reasonable extension of the overall philosophy, but Chapman never mentions sex directly in any of these respects. The elision of sex is the books unignorable flaw; how can sex be separate from other expressions of love?

Our sexuality is so bound up with who we are, said Klein. I dont think that most men are particularly connected to their sexuality. People talk about sex as if its an act rather than a form of intimacy and a way of being known...I do think people would be so much better off if there were sexual love languages. So many people would be better off learning about themselves and their sexuality, and how much better would peoples sex lives be if they could like, name a way that they wanted to be related to sexually?

Even third-party experts arent necessarily aligned on where sex fits in. I consider sexual intimacy to be included in the love language of physical touch, said Leslie Bartlett, a licensed clinical professional counselor who works exclusively with couples in Brunswick, Maine. I think we should honor Gary. What he has done is profound. Hes offered a way of looking at couples fundamental misunderstandings in a way that can shine a light and allow these misunderstandings to be softened. And of course theres more! Theres always more, theres always deeper. But he took a beautiful step into a journey that needed to be examined.

While secular people might find the Love Languages subtle Christianity off-putting, a growing minority of devout Christians find it too secular. The evangelical blogosphere in particular contains plenty of polite detractors. Dell Canright, a marriage counselor who runs Christian Counseling in Mansfield, Texas, has found that, sometimes, the love languages can encourage selfishness between couples.

He reminds us that humans have a fundamental need to feel loved, but frames this as an opportunity rather than the reason that all humans stagger through most of life suffering.

I dont think that Dr. Chapman intended this, but the love languages can resonate with our selfish parts. [The book] can encourage couples to say, You know what my needs arewhy wont you give me that? As opposed to learning what kind of love your wife or husband needs. Im not opposed to the idea of the love languagesand I think Dr. Chapmans done a great job of identifying some simple ways that we like to receive love. But I know that most of the clients I meet start out using the love languages in a selfish way as opposed to in a loving way to minister to their spouse.

Canright, also a Baptist, situates Love Languages within an integrationist approach to psychologywhich takes basic tenets of human psychology, and occasionally integrates religious scripture into its practice. Canright himself practices what is known as Biblical counseling, which takes a more fundamentalist approach to applying scripture to everyday life.

The integrationist approach is based on the idea that man is good, and he needs to have good self-esteem to be happy. The Biblical approach to counseling believes that man is Gods enemy. Mans greatest need is to be reconciled to God. Life is not about me. Its about Christ living in me and through me.

Chapmans integrationist approach doesnt hold much appeal to Baptist counselors like Canright, who prefer to use Biblical scripture as a strict guidebook rather than a set of general suggestions. Chapmans influence, however, cant be denied, even by those who disagree with him. Most people wouldnt critique [Chapman], said Canright. Most people wouldnt in any way disparage or think critically about the book because of the reputation that Dr. Chapman has.

Advice sent via the Love Languages email list

The original Love Languageswhich remains by far Chapman's biggest hithas stayed more or less the same since 1992, through numerous reissues. Not much has changed, claimed Chapman, even with prevalence of dating apps. People who meet online, once theyre together, the situation is the same as if you met any other way. You still have a fundamental need to feel loved.

Indeed, Gary Chapman may have written the definitive couples self-help guide of our time; no other book seems to be threatening its dominance in terms of influence and sales. He reminds us that humans have a fundamental need to feel loved, but frames this as an opportunity rather than the reason that all humans stagger through most of life suffering. To feel unloved is to be wretched. To demand love is humiliating. Love itself is often not cute. Chapman diverts our attention away from the wretchedness that we all fear, and the humiliation we all know, and normalizes the act of asking others for things we need.

The love languages stand as a protective barrier between ourselves and the painful reality of our emotional needs. In this way, they transcend their Christian origins. The feeling of being unloved is what drives consumer capitalism; most of us are taught to think that maybe this time, with this new configuration of objects and experiences, things will be different. In suggesting that we look inward for the cause of this hunger, Chapmans as much a Buddhist as he is a Christian.

Say what you will about Chapmans anachronistic wholesomeness or the intellectual poverty of reducing yourself to a type, the love languages have good bones. They encourage us to satisfy our need for love by asking for more lovenot with more adventures, or a more inflated sense of our own holiness, or a different partner, or a remodeled kitchen, or a new hobby. We are stuck with ourselves; our needs dont change much over time. The love languages suggest, gently, that we should stop changing the subject and be honest about what we really want.

Humans as a species are addicted to deluding ourselves. We are desperate for someone to convince us that things are better or easier or sexier than they really arejust ask me in 2003, lying in bed with my bronchial infection and my romantic hallucinations. But the love languages are dedicated to peeling off artifice rather than applying more. They dont trade on our gullibility or our eternal optimism. We cant resist the narcissistic mantras of self-improvement that fill so much of todays self-help literature. But Gary Chapman (and the Moody Bible Institute's tax receipts) would argue that even more than that, we cant resist feeling loved. What a surprisingly heartening thought.

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We live in very stimulating times. The non-stop bombardment of information and indulgences that is modern life has transformed us into needy, pleasure-addicted thrillseekers! Thats the conceit the proponents of dopamine fasting are running with, at least. Richard, a full-time life coach who runs a YouTube channel called ImprovementPill, posted an instructional video on dopamine fasting in November 2018 that has garnered almost 1.7 million views. I came up with the concept when I was in a rut, Richard told VICE.

Some blog posts have credited him as the inventor of the practice, but Richard says he first heard the term dopamine fasting floating around self-improvement internet forums a few years ago, and remembered it again as a college student who felt drained and lethargic from partying and slacking off watching Netflix and neglecting healthier habitsdoing nothing, in his words. I was like, what if I just doubled-down on doing nothing and just did a lot of nothing for a whole day, I wonder what thats gonna do?

A dopamine fast is the supposed antidote for the inattentiveness that plagues us, the burnout induced by too much of too many good things. It consists of a period of abstention from earthy delights like sex, drugs, and, in some extreme cases, talking to other people, for 24 hours or more. The desired end result is a neurochemical reseta brain decluttered, procrastination banished, focus sharpened. If the idea of abstaining from anything fun in order to increase your mental clarity is appealing, congratulations: You and the notorious biohackers in Silicon Valley are on the same wave.

Before we get too far into it, its best to know that dopamine fasting probably doesnt really have a lot to do with dopaminedefinitely not enough to merit the moniker, according to researchers familiar with the neurotransmitter. MEL Magazines report on dopamine fasting compared the practice to meditation, specifically Vipassan meditation, and one faster they interviewed told them dopamine fasting was a reaction to our present-day understanding of the brain (A lot of the concepts have been used for a very long time, but in the modern era we understand neurology), though probably an overextended one.

My main problem is this: If someone wants to demonstrate that this is an effective therapy, then they should not just offer it as effective on the internet, and start a fad in California, John Salamone, a psychology professor at the University of Connecticut, told VICE via email. I feel that it is misleading to call this dopamine fasting, as if dopamine was the only thing being affected.

Salamone also emphasized that the idea that dopamine equals pleasure is a pretty serious oversimplification. Dopamine is involved in many functions, including motivation, emotion, learning, and reinforcement. The role in mood is complicated, so dopamine is not just a pleasure chemical, Salamone said. People often attribute the pleasure induced by food or drugs to dopamine, [but] there is evidence indicating that interfering with dopamine transmission does not alter hedonic reactivity to food, and that dopamine antagonist drugs do not consistently block the subjectively rated euphoria induced by drugs of abuse.

But beyond the misnomer, health and media psychologist Nancy Mramor said she could imagine the kind of break a dopamine fast entails being usefulthough a little more rigorous than the average person needs. Normally, a person is not overly concerned with all of these things at once, but is more over-indulgent in one or two, she told VICE. For example, a measured amount of TV watching, reading, or coffee drinking can fit into a balanced life. But if something like reading has become a way of escaping from life, responsibility, and human interaction, then it would be wise to take a break.

Mramor said that a mental health professional would be more likely to recommend a tiered approach than a leap to total abstinence. Often, a person needs to take a break from something in order to get in perspective, gradually reintroducing it into their life until it reaches an agreed upon level and staying there, she said. If the individual is in therapy, the client and therapist could work together to establish a good level of use.

A viral article posted on LinkedIn by University of California San Francisco assistant clinical psychiatry professor and executive psychologist Cameron Sepah put dopamine fasting back on the radar in early August. The post linked the practice to Silicon Valley, dubbing it the hot trend akin to intermittent fasting. Its unclear what the long-term implications of this overstimulation are on our brains, but in my private practice working with executive clients, I have observed that this interferes with our ability to sustain attention, regulate our emotions in non-avoidant ways, and enjoy simple tasks that seem boring by comparison, Sepah wrote. We may be getting too much of a good thing, especially when dopamine reinforces behaviors that are out of line with our values. He also links dopamine release to addiction: Even behaviors such as gaming or gambling can become problematic and addictive through the reinforcement that dopamine brings. MEL spoke to Sepah, who admitted the term dopamine fasting was more about provoking a reaction than maintaining accuracy. The term is technically incorrect, but stimulus control 101 for dealing with addictive behavior just doesnt have the same ring to it, he said.

But Jaime Castrellon, whose research on dopamines impact on value computation and self-control has been published in the Journal of Neuroscience, took issue with the language in Sepahs dopamine fast article equating pleasure-seeking with addiction.

Engaging in everyday activities is typically normal and should not be compared to substance or behavioral addictions, Castrellon said over email. Generally, higher levels of dopamine has been linked to positive feelings like excitement and wanting to engage in something pleasurable. These feelings support learning positive outcomes from past decisions and keep us motivated for future ones.

Sepahs article states that dopamine fasting is not a one-size-fits-all practice, because not everyone derives pleasure from the same stimuli. But he suggests a few basics for fasters to cut out: sex, internet use, shopping, pleasure eating, thrill-seeking, and recreational drugs.

Richards dopamine fasting approach is more restrictive: He cuts out all activities besides writing, taking walks, and drinking water. The YouTuber said that although hes only dopamine fasted three times in his life, its been a restorative experience every time. Its kind of like a reset button, Richard said. The day after a dopamine fast, he said, his motivation is always sharper than before. You end up doing all the things you should be doing. Since you just spent a whole day doing nothing, anything sounds fun.

Castrellon said temporary abstinence may not affect dopamine levels, especially if youre taking time off from fun by staying home all day, in familiar territory. We would still expect to see dopamine release in response to cues in the environment, he said. Maybe you dont turn on Netflix when you get home, but just seeing the TV itself triggers dopamine to release because its been associated with watching Netflix.

Castrellon did add that if dopamine fasting were to impact the brains levels of the neurotransmitter, it could have a reset effect, just not the same one Richard described feeling. If abstaining from everyday pleasurable activities and goods did have an effect, we would actually expect the brain to re-calibrate and become more sensitive to whatever rewards youre still gettinglike water or plain food, since those would now be the only thing left to give you pleasure, he said. But, due in part to the fact that everyone has different brain chemistry, theres no formal research on this subject in particular; so far, weve only got lifestyle bro pseudo-trip diaries to work off of.

From a mental health perspective, Mramor said a dopamine fast could also be a useful tool for gaining perspective on your habits and establishing boundaries with yourself. Anyone taking a break will begin to notice the many times a day they indulged (I would have been eating junk food right now, or I would have had my phone on all night), raising conscious awareness of their behavior and the destructive level of it, she said. Of course, this leaves open the possibility of extreme abstinence. Id say its only a matter of time before we hear about someone heading out into the desert to forgo fun permanently, but they since theyd have sworn off posting forever, wed never even know about it.

Richard, for his part, acknowledged that dopamine fastings benefits could absolutely be rooted in the placebo effect, but still encouraged anyone considering it to give it a try. Theres really no riskits not like a change in diet, or some sort of medication or supplement, he said. After you do it, youll know whether or not it works. You cant really get hurt from doing nothing.

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The reasons why F1 so often reaches an impasse when trying to achieve positive change or has to water down revolutionary plans have their roots in deals made and directions taken much earlier in the decade.

We unpick the journey to the current problems, and ask how detrimental the situation might be to the efforts to make F1 more open and entertaining in 2021, and what can be made to ease the rule change debate's progress in the small amount of time remaining.

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By Maan de Vera

We all have parts of ourselves that we dislike and the road to being comfortable under your own skin is definitely a rocky one. Just when you thought that you have made it and nothing can take away your new found self-esteem, all of your efforts have been knocked out by just one jab of reality.

Suddenly, all of your insecurities start sticking out like a sore thumb. You start suffocating yourself with self-degrading thoughts. Lastly, you turn into your greatest enemyone that you can never get rid off no matter where you run.

As much as we want to believe that opening up to people who care about is the best way to handle this, the truth is, its not always that easy to open during your vulnerable moments. So, when you feel that pang of self-hate, keep these TED Talks a close company.

1. "Looks arent everything. Trust me...Im a model." - Cameron Russell

More often than not, our physical appearance is the perfect breeding ground for self-doubt. It may feel like everyone else is looking polished 24/7 except you. Well, you are not alone and guess whateven the most picture-perfect people in the world A.K.A. fashion models arent completely happy with their physical appearances. This talk embodies that what you think about yourself is more important than how you look.

2. "Ending the pursuit of perfection" - Iskra Lawrence

Although we may have different takes on what perfection really means, there is one thing that we can all agree on and that is chasing after this is a taxing task and an often impossible feat. With this in mind, we still blame ourselves when we dont fit into molds that everyone else consider as beautiful. This TED Talk will teach you that building a healthy relationship with yourself is the only perfect way to counter the feeling of not being enough.

3. "The Dark Side of Self Improvement" - Suzanne Eder

Self-improvement is a good thing. Dont get us wrong here. Its always positive when someone is humble enough to accept that we all have rooms for improvement. However, the evil twin of bettering ourselves is the notion that we are meaningless until we reach the point of where we aspire to be. This TED Talk is a nice reminder that we can be both a masterpiece and a work-in-progress at the same time.

Just like any other relationship, loving yourself takes commitment. Some days are good; other says can be less than that. There will be a constant battle with your self-doubts and your self-worth. The only question is: which side are you on?

ALSO READ:Daily Diaries: 3 Things To Do Instead of Comparing Yourself to Other Girls

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Illustration by Anika Vuievi

Illustration by Anika Vuievi

Illustration by Anika Vuievi

Ive thought about it, and this confession needs to be made publicly. Only recently did I start to notice my strange habit, and I am hoping it doesnt get any further out of hand.

I became aware of the space I was taking up when I thought I had been minding my own business, reading and stretching out my limbs. You can imagine my shock when I realized that I was splayed out like a starfish in multiple seats, bag fully unpacked, its contents covering the surface area of a small yoga studio. What shocked me even more than the initial surprise was the wave of satisfaction that followed. I am not proud of it, but I take a sick pleasure in occupying tons of space.

I keep catching myself in the act, probably because it can so easily be done. Place an item near an empty table, and most people respectfully assume it is reserved. It works anywhere on campus, too: the dining hall, library, you name it. I spread out my materials like pawns on a chessboard, sectioning off space the size of a standard swimming pool, to work completely alone. I sit back and watch as people grow increasingly desperate to find a place to settle, circling hopelessly. This is truly a thrill. A deep and twisted part of me enjoys witnessing their despair.

I could not tell you where this comes from. I love the movie The Lion King and that line everything the light touches is yours, Simba, really resonates. Maybe, I replace the void where friends should be with empty space I am unwilling to share with anyone.

Broadcasting my affliction will hold me accountable to change I will miss this sweet rush. I appreciate your patience with my effort toward self-improvement.

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CultureTVThere's also Lupita Nyong'o's documentary on the warrior women on Benin and Paul Rudd's body double Netflix comedy, Living With Yourself

Friday, 18th October 2019, 12:20 pm

Living with Yourself

From Friday 18 October, Netflix

When Miles Elliot undergoes an experimental treatment to turn his unfulfilled life around, he finds himself replaced by a confident, capable doppelganger. Paul Rudd plays both versions of himself in this eight-part Netflix comedy, with Irish actress and comedian Aisling Bea playing his wife, Kate. Applying a sci-fi twist to the old worst enemy adage, the series pushes the idea of self-improvement to a farcical breaking point.

Modern Love

From Friday 18 October, Amazon Prime Video

Adapted from a long-running New York Times column, this anthology places the spotlight on contemporary love stories romantic and otherwise. Actors confirmed for the eight-episode series include Anne Hathaway, Dev Patel, Tina Fey, Andy Garcia, John Slattery and Sofia Boutella. Film-maker John Carney, known for the cult musical hits Once and Sing Street, writes and directs.

Would I Lie to You?

Friday 18 October, 9.30pm, BBC One

A new series of the panel show, with Chris McCausland, Gabby Logan, Angela Scanlon and John Simm joining Rob Brydon, Lee Mack and David Mitchell to guess whos been telling porkies. Up for debate tonight are whether Scanlon failed to recognise Steven Spielberg on the red carpet and whether a naked John Simm got into bed with his father-in-law. But best of all is McCausland, who lost his sight in his twenties and steals the show with his descriptions of what he thinks Mitchell and Mack look like.

Looking for Alaska

From Saturday 19 October, 10am, BBC iPlayer

Based on the best-selling teen novel by John Green (The Fault in Our Stars), this American miniseries features Kristine Froseth (Sierra Burgess Is a Loser) as Alaska Young, a boarding school student haunted by her mothers death, and Charlie Plummer (All the Money in the World) as Miles Pudge Halter, her inquisitive classmate with whom she embarks on an ill-fated romance. All eight episodes are available on iPlayer the morning after their US debut.

Watchmen

Monday 21 October, 9pm, Sky Atlantic

Alan Moores seminal graphic novel Watchmen a political and psychological deconstruction of superhero vigilantism receives a high-budget TV sequel, care of Damon Lindelof (Lost, The Leftovers). The series a radical departure from 2009s meretricious film adaptation is set in a parallel, internet-free 2019, where Robert Redford is midway through his seventh term as US President. Regina King, Tim Blake Nelson and Jeremy Irons are among the principal cast.

Storyville: The PM, the Playboy and the Wolf of Wall Street

Monday 21 October, 9pm, BBC Four

Between 2009 and 2014, a Malaysian wealth fund was robbed of more than $3.5bn (2.9bn). When investigative reporters from the US started digging around, they discovered a trail of evidence that led to the very top of the Malaysian government via real-estate deals and film financing including the Hollywood hit The Wolf of Wall Street. This feature-length Storyville documentary walks through the crime and its uncovering.

The British Tribe Next Door

Tuesday 22 October, 9.15pm, Channel 4

Scarlett Moffatt, the reality TV star who rose to fame on Gogglebox, travels to Namibia in this controversial series to live among the Himba, a semi-nomadic tribe of cattle-herders. The twist is that Moffatt will bring a replica of her family home in County Durham with her, as well as her family and 21st-century Western technology, from running water and electricity to ready meals and a TV. Whether this culture-clash doc manages to keep it tasteful remains to beseen.

Warrior Women with Lupita Nyongo

Wednesday 23 October, 10pm, Channel 4

Academy Award-winning actor Lupita Nyongo presents this one-off doc in which she travels across Benin, West Africa, to learn about the formidable women once known to Europe as the Amazons. Theall-female warrior tribe battled with foreign powers throughout the 18th and 19th centuries and served as part inspiration for the Dora Milaje fighters in Black Panther, in which Nyongo starred.

The Accident

Thursday 24 October, 9pm, Channel 4

A small Welsh town is devastated by a catastrophic explosion on the site of a new construction project in this harrowing four-part drama scripted by Jack Thorne (This is England). Sarah Lancashire stars as Polly, the wife of the local councillor (Mark Lewis Jones) who had pushed for the construction project. As the death and injury toll mounts, Polly must contend with grief and trauma in a community that may never recover.

Bill Turnbull: Staying Alive

Thursday 24 October, 10pm, Channel 4

The former BBC Breakfast host Bill Turnbull was diagnosed with advanced prostate cancer two years ago. In this emotional documentary, Turnbull reflects on his life, and the challenges thrown at him and his family by the diagnosis. After nine rounds of chemotherapy, Turnbull is still presenting on Classic FM and commentating on Wycombe Wanderers football matches, which we see here alongside encounters with Sian Williams, Stephen Fry and Nick Robinson.

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