“How can I trigger a state of happiness after all of this pain?” said my inner voice. This was a reoccurring thought of mine for the last year.
Back in the early part of 2017 — when everyone was trading cryptocurrency big time, enjoying the demise of Twitter and watching Star Wars — I was going through a challenging period in my life. I’d hit rock bottom because of multiple, consecutive, breakups.
Due to my side hustle of blogging and personal development, thankfully, I had the tools to get out of this dark place. I’m conscious that not everybody does though.
During one of my lunch breaks on a sunny Friday afternoon in Melbourne, I decide to buy some socks. Normally I like to buy an ordinary black pair and I usually go with the brand Pussyfoot. Okay, it’s a really wimpy name for a manly man looking for some socks, but what the heck.
Next to the black socks I usually buy was a rainbow pair. My mind went back to that recurring inner voice that was looking for quick ways to trigger happiness.
On the front of the socks was a simple sentence that read:
Could happiness be so simple?
Could I really trust a sock company with my happiness and to help be part of the reason I get out of this very dark place? I’m a dreamer, so I pondered that thought for a while.
I looked at those socks and imagined all the happiness I was missing out on. The colors took me to another place far, far away from all the so-called problems I thought I had. In that brief moment, I gave myself permission to dream again, to be happy.
I then looked at the time and I realized I had to get back to the office. I grabbed the Rainbow Socks and paid for them without thinking another moment. I had no idea what I’d just done.
So there they were…All shiny and new with their bright fluro colors waiting for me to put them on and wear them to work so bravely.
I wore those socks proudly, all the way to work. On the walk, I remembered something I had read in a book about a psychology term known as “pattern interrupts.” In layman’s terms, it means to stop a negative thought pattern with something that triggers a different state of mind.
The beauty of these pattern interrupts is that they are often very simple. The simpler, the better. I’d used them before and they had worked a treat. Then I thought to myself triumphantly:
“I’m going to use these Rainbow Socks to interrupt my negative thoughts and change my life”
It was clear to me that focusing on all the dark times of the last twelve months was not going to get me where I wanted to go.
My goal with these Rainbow Socks was to trigger states of happiness whenever I needed them.
These socks reminded me that even the most basic thing could make me happy. Happiness doesn’t require lots of money or hard to reach goals. We can train our brains to be happy with something that is meaningful to us, and only us.
For me, that was Rainbow Socks. For you, it might be a rainbow smoothie or a double mocha frappuccino. The method in which you interrupt your negative thought patterns and trigger states of happiness can be anything.
To the outside world, I looked like a clown with Rainbow Socks; to me, I felt happy.
The bright colors made me feel good. Each color represented something different.
- Red represented the love I have for my fellow human beings
- Green represented the beautiful rainforests I visited in Queensland
- Yellow represented the sun on my face while staring up at The Golden Gate Bridge
- Blue represented my love of the ocean and my trip to the Abrolhos Islands in Perth
- Pink represented my dream of finding “the one”
- Navy blue represented how I felt when I wore my favorite suit
- Black represented the dark times and how all the other colors made it seem insignificant
Slowly but surely, each time I wore my Rainbow Socks I remembered to be happy. People commented on them and the majority seemed to get the same happy feeling. The minority made fun of my Rainbow Socks and that’s okay. Not everyone is supposed to understand my way of happiness.
Each of our paths in life are different yet they’re exactly the same. Our life challenges are no different. While the flavor of our challenges varies, the overarching recipe is the same.
All any of us wants is to be happy. My question to you is “Why does that need to be so hard?”
Why can’t something as silly as a pair of Rainbow Socks remind you to be happy and remind you of the good times?
***My Goal For You***
Now that you have read this post, I want you to do one thing for me; find what your little happiness hack is and start using it regularly. If you don’t know what yours is, experiment. Go back to when you were a kid and you didn’t care what people thought of your socks.
In this little happiness hack I’ve shared with you, lies a strategy for you to change your life. Ponder that idea for a while. Through all of the darkness, you have the ability to be happy inside of you already. Unleash it for the world to see.
By Tim Denning