And, if you ever find yourself hospitalized, ask that staffers wash or sanitize their hands while you watch.
But, here’s the rub (pardon the pun)…people who use public rest rooms are more likely to wash their hands than physicians in America’s hospitals, a leading scholar reports. In December 2007, hand washing compliance stood at a meager 31%, with physicians being the least compliant.
So, due to a recent drop in hand washing compliance, the hospital will institute a system of potential rewards, and punishments.
In your experience in hospitals, do you believe that fewer than 50% of patient caregivers perform proper hand washing?
I began calling my daily posters I was writing and designing my "Daily Inspirational Flashcards" -- because their goal was to quickly remind people of the positive psychological beliefs and productive habits that lead to the happiest life. I wondered: How was it possible for something as quick as a 10-second reading of a poster to change someone's emotional state? If you saw the movie Shallow Hal, then you saw a pattern interrupt in action in that elevator scene -- albeit a humorously re-enacted example of a pattern interrupt. If you haven't seen Shallow Hal, here's a quickie synopsis: Tony and Jack get trapped in an elevator, and begin to talk about dating.
Other known methods for pattern interrupts have included: snapping a rubber band on your wrist, playing powerful music, being hit with unexpected comic relief, doing calming meditations, repeating positive affirmations -- and reading an inspirational poster on Facebook! A pattern interrupt works in real life like this: Let's say an event happens which puts you in a grumpy mood.
Here's the neuroscientific scoop: MRIs of the brain show that every time a person thinks angry thoughts or imagines worst-case scenarios, they literally send a surge of blood flowing into brain regions associated with depression and anger (the right prefrontal cortex) -- thereby refueling depression and anger. Plus, recent studies on learning show that when you incorporate visuals into your learning process, you may be able to better "record" a message into your permanent memory bank. In the last year, I've noticed a huge trend on Facebook -- of hundreds of other Facebook Pages offering positively inspiring posters.


A recent survey of doctors and nurses said they would respond positively if you asked them to wash their hands in your presence but felt uncomfortable that you would ask in the first place! Employees with patient care relationships at Abingdon (Pa.) Memorial Hospital could soon find themselves out of a job if they don’t follow hospital policy on hand washing.
It took the director of Abingdon Memorial’s epidemiology department educating the chronic offending physicians (Doctor to Doctor) to turn a corner in compliance. Compliant hand washers will receive index cards that make them eligible for a prize raffle.
What’s more serious than somebody dying from a hospital-acquired infection that could have been prevented with proper hand washing? Soon, my "Inspirational Flashcards" began to go viral -- with thousands, then hundreds of thousands, then even millions of shares for a single poster. Tony speedily discovers that Jack's character engages in a limited thought pattern -- stubbornly only dating stunning women for shallow reasons. All these various pattern interrupts work like a "thought intervention" -- creating a jiggling affect upon a person's tightly held negative beliefs -- then jumpstarting a new positive pattern of thought. If you're not careful, your negative thoughts about this one solo circumstance can create a downward spiral, where you quickly go from merely thinking "This one thing sucks," to "My whole day sucks," to "My whole life sucks," to "The world sucks," to "Distant galaxies suck." Basically, without a pattern interrupt, a sad person can get grumpier, and an angry person can get crankier! Happily, MRI's have also shown that when a person starts to think happy thoughts, they can send a surge of blood flowing into brain regions associated with happiness (the left prefrontal cortex) -- thereby literally refueling your positivity. The more neurons you have firing up, the greater the chance that your brain is paying attention and recording what it is perceiving. It's really taken off as a wildly popular activity for people to read, share and tag positive posters! Click here to check out Karen's popular Facebook page, and explore if posters are an empowering mood booster for you. The employees administering patient care are casually observed by “secret shoppers” to see whether or not they are complying with the “zero tolerance” policy for failure to wash their hands before and after they enter a patient’s room.


With other interventions by the hospital’s leadership, they saw compliance climb and then plateau at 88% and saw a commensurate drop in infections.
I began believing in that much talked about "mommy brain." Thankfully, I've always loved design.
Plus I began receiving hundreds of emails from people thanking me, explaining that my daily "Inspirational Flashcards" were truly helping them battle depressed emotional states -- even when it came to dealing with majorly challenging issues like a bipolar disorder or a loved one's death. My "Inspirational Flashcards" create what's called a "pattern interrupt" -- a psychological tool recommended by practitioners of neuro-linguistic programming to help stop limiting beliefs.
Tony helps Jack to break his superficial thought pattern by surprising Jack with a clunk on his head, then shouting "Devils come out!" Sure enough, instantly a new mental window opens for Jack. Staff members who reach three infractions will receive a letter noting that reappointment is conditional.
If you know my books (like The Bounce Back Book) you know they're filled with kinetic images and quirky fonts. Similarly, positivity -- pushing posters jackhammer-drill home positive messaging in a stronger way than words alone.
Being the positive problem-solver that I am, I started experimenting with designing inspiring posters. I know in the book My Stroke of Insight, the author said she found it easier to write in a journal rather than by computer when she was on her way to recovery.



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