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Happiness may be a click away

SALT LAKE CITY — Negative thoughts are a lot like
Gremlins, the pesky little creatures from the popular ’80s
movie. The more you feed them, the more they multiply.

It’s been said that you become what you think about most
of the time. In the U.S., where one in 10 adults suffers
from depression, it’s apparent that most Americans have a
difficult time controlling the proverbial snowball of
negative thoughts we can have.

Hilary Weeks, the popular faith-based singer and speaker,
has felt firsthand the power that negative thoughts can
have when you feed into them.

Weeks was told that most people have around 300 negative
thoughts every day. Fascinated with the statistic, she
started an experiment to find out if it was true. She
purchased a small counter, or clicker, and counted her
negative thoughts for one whole week. After a week of
pausing to recognize each downer and disappointment with a
click, she felt drained and low. She wondered if giving
the same attention to positive thoughts could have the
opposite effect. If we pause to recognize blessings, hope
and everything good in our lives with a simple “click,” it
could lead to that shared goal we all strive for:
happiness.

Weeks has created a website inspired by this experience,
billionclicks.org
. It’s a movement that encourages people everywhere to
“click” as a reward for their positive thoughts and
actions. “Clickers” even log in to report their tallies in
the hope that one day the site will reach one billion
clicks — an idea that Weeks believes can change the
world. So far, nearly half a million clicks have been
reported from participants who believe in the motto,
“Think. Click. Be.”

“By ‘Be’ we mean be successful, be determined, be
dedicated, be better, be motivated and be your best self,”
Weeks said. “Clicking is a tool for becoming who we are
truly meant to be. Ideally clickers will learn to seek the
positive and believe in who they are and what they can
achieve.”

There may be skeptics who think something as simple as a
hand-held counter couldn’t possibly make any significant
difference, but research on depression has shown that
consciously filtering out negative thoughts and recording
gratitude can truly bring about change.

“Flossing our teeth is simple. Putting a fabric softener
sheet in the dryer is simple. Flipping on a light switch
is simple. There is nothing complicated or complex about
any of those things, and yet they have a huge impact for
good in our lives,” Weeks said. “We don’t refuse floss or
dryer sheets just because they lack complexity. Clicking
is simple, and that’s the beauty of it.”

The “click movement” is growing in popularity with
frustrated mothers, teachers dealing with behavioral
problems in the classroom, people struggling with their
weight, and those who want an immediate reward that
promises to start a chain reaction of positivity.

“A teenage young woman recently shared that she used
clicking while she was getting ready for school in the
morning to boost her self-esteem. One man was introduced
to clicking just six days before he passed away from
cancer. He clicked each ‘I love you.’ When he passed away,
there were 32 clicks on his clicker,” Weeks said.

Hilary is the only Latter-Day Saint artist to debut in the
top 10 of Billboard’s Christian Album list with her eighth
album, “Every Step.” She’s also a popular speaker at “Time
Out For Women,” a motivational conference for women
sponsored by Deseret Book. With so much on her plate,
Weeks acknowledges that her positive approach aides in her
success.

“Being positive and grateful certainly doesn’t hurt,”
Weeks explained. “And on the days when I am tempted to
doubt myself and my goals, I know what will help. I pull
out my clicker and start filling my mind with thoughts
that will get me to where I want to be.”

“Every click is a little more good added to the world
— and clearly, the world needs it. Every effort,
action and movement that inspires goodness is reason to
celebrate.”

Nicole Pollard currently
resides in Canyon Country, Calif.