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Back on Track: How to Straighten Out Your Life When It Throws You A Curve

Back on Track:  How to Straighten Out Your Life When It Throws You A Curve

By, Deborah Norville   (©1997 Simon & Schuster)

Back on Track - by Deborah NorvilleMESSAGE:  I wrote this book because I learned so much in the process of rebuilding myself and my career after my Today Show days that I felt I ought to share it with others.  Back on Track is really a ‘recipe’ book – only the only thing we make is a stronger, more resilient YOU.

About Back on Track:

For Emmy Award-winning journalist Deborah Norville, currently anchor of the top-rated Inside Edition, television has been the stage for many of her successes. She was only nineteen when she conducted a live interview with the president of the United States.

Yet television provided the devastatingly public theater for Norville's professional crisis as well. The one-time host of the Today show first arrived at NBC in 1987 and later found herself in the midst of a struggle to defend her credibility when Jane Pauley left the morning broadcast. The pressure became unbearable for Norville, who left the show during her maternity leave in 1991. Many people--including Norville herself--predicted she would never return to television.

The crisis left Norville unemployed after the birth of her child and paralyzed by depression. She found herself in need of a career--and lacking the energy and spirit to find one. Like many, Norville was sidetracked--and nearly derailed--by a crisis in life, only hers had been on television for all the world to witness.

Since then Norville has climbed her way out of her professional abyss and she believes the secret to changing the course of her own life applies to anyone in crisis. In Back on Track, she recounts her own story with profiles of other women in crisis: among them, survivors of breast cancer, financial ruin, and those who've lost loved ones.

Based on her own success with reconstructing her life at its nadir, Norville offers, with warmth and wit, a clear practical ten-point plan for enduring crises and getting one's life Back on Track.


Have you ever shoved food in your face when you were hurt or angry and hated yourself at the time for doing it? Have you ever felt severely depressed? Have you ever had the sense that life is just a series of days strung together? You just plod through them and at some point it all ends? You were having a crisis. Just like me.         

When I left my job as co-anchor on NBC's Today show, I went through a major tailspin. I was paralyzed by depression. There were weeks I never left my apartment or even got dressed.

And yet, when I reached bottom, I looked inside and found within the way to get 'back on track.' The steps may seem simple, but taking them is not.

What I hope to do with this book, by sharing my story and that of many other courageous women who put crisis behind them, is to encourage you to try walking.

You can feel good about yourself. When I look back were I was "...used by NBC, dumped in a ditch and left for dead," as the Chicago Tribune put it, I feel pretty good about how far I've come. You can too.

EXCERPT from Back on Track:

No matter who you are, there will be times when life just seems too much. Events seem unfair, the wrong guy or gal always seems to get the break, while you - the deserving one - goes unappreciated. We all occasionally throw those pity parties for ourselves. I have found that sometimes when I am in a funk, re-reading some of the closing passages of my first book, Back on Track can be helpful.

I have excerpted a bit for you to use during those 'cloudy' days:

You have within you a huge reservoir of strength and talent and abilities. You have worth. Unless you recognize it first, the world will never see it. I have tried to show you how to tap into that reservoir. I've posed the questions. The answers you give will show you the path you should take toward what will bring peace and contentment to your life.

Step by step. Bit by bit. You can restore those blocks that have been rattled from the foundation of your life. THE crisis that shook you and the rebuilding you went through are now part of your life. It is part of who you are. If you let it, it can be what strengthens you and helps protect you from more hurt in the future.

"Ask not that events should happen as you will, but let your will be that events should happen as they do...and you shall have peace.


This has become the motto of my life. I feel at times like Superwoman. There are moments when I am so energized by the good things in life, so excited knowing that I turned a bad situation around and did it myself that I am sure I can leap tall buildings in a single bound. That's usually when reality bumps into me again.

The difference now is - reality doesn't leave scars. I take a deep breath and calm down. I do a quick mental rundown of the strengths I have to help me along. I seek advice but use my own intuition as to whether to accept it or not. And - I go forward.

I let events happen as they do - and I have peace. I have gotten back on track.

You can too.

Excerpted from Back on Track ©1997

Click here to see Deborah and new baby Mikaela talk about  Back on Track on the Regis and Kathy Lee Show.

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