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Maybe you’ve had car trouble, hair trouble, kid trouble—or just not enough coffee. Whatever dark thoughts are seeding your personal black cloud, they may trigger more depressing thoughts, which ultimately send your day into a downward spiral.

Been there? We’ve all had those no good, very bad days, but did you know there’s actually a quick way to turn the day around? In her new book Instant Happy (Ten Speed Press, 2012; $12.99), best-selling self-help author Karen Salmansohn offers up sixty 10-second attitude makeovers in the form of inspirational flashcards.

In the book’s introduction, Salmansohn explains that the idea behind the bright, engaging double-page spreads that combine an image and an inspiring, positive message is based on a psychological tool called pattern interrupts in which each positive, happy image and its accompanying message interrupt the pattern of negative thought and “jumpstart a new pattern of positive, productive thought.”

If you’re hesitant about buying a self-help book—picturing something ponderous and filled with affirmation exercises, perhaps—know that Salmansohn’s approach is completely fresh. The creative graphics and funny, empowering messages offer a completely different approach. Reading through the book is a colorful, happy breath of fresh air, offering the reader a new take on a bad day and a message that will continue to inspire.

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