The songwriter is so serious about finding joy that he's called himself on a "Mission to Be Happy," as touts the title of his new CD and book.
"I used to think happiness was something you earned for later," he said. "I thought happiness was something you had in heaven."
Widely known in the Mormon community for his Christmas program, "The Forgotten Carols," and "From God's Arms to My Arms to Yours," McLean said he has realized that there is joy in the journey, and that's his new focus.
"The joy is not in somewhere down the road," he said.
McLean refers to himself in the 86-page book published by Deseret Book as a "middle-aged, clinically depressed, type 2 diabetic," and says the book is the type of manual for finding day-to-day happiness. The father of three has had periods of depression and discouragement in his life and says the book and CD serve as a sort of "handbook about finding authentic, in the moment, unexpected, real joys."