A Moment in the Life of a Toxic, Selfish, Delusional, and Unimportant Happiness Specialist
In late September 2021, I attended an “invitation only” network and marketing event in San Diego, California. The speakers at the event ranged from CEOs of companies worth billions of dollars to CEOs of companies worth millions of dollars, a fashion designer, global speakers, New York Times best-selling authors, million-dollar business coaches, television personalities, actors, artists, social media experts, tech advisors, musicians, a triple gold-medal winner, and medical doctors sharing the latest scientific brain technologies and discoveries in the world.
Many speakers made themselves available for brief one-on-one conversations with the participants. While I listened to the speakers over three days, a few resonated with me. So, I intended to personally connect with them before the event ended.
It was the evening of the last day when I tapped a tall, robust, and influential man on the shoulder and asked if I could speak to him. He was talking to friends; however, he graciously said yes and walked out of the party into the lobby with me. The music was loud in the lobby, so we decided to step outside on the patio deck. It was a beautiful, clear California night. We found a spot to stand over a tall round cocktail table, and I introduced myself.
Greetings, Mr. O’Brien. My name is Rebecca L. Norrington, and I’m a Happiness Specialist and an Inner Peace Practitioner. Before I uttered another word, he completed a statement etched in my memory forever. “You will never work in any of my companies because what you do is toxic.” Mr. O’Brien was dead serious, and I couldn’t contain my laughter. A toxic happiness specialist? Please, tell me more, I sincerely asked.
Walter O’Brien is an information technologist, businessman, and serial entrepreneur who has supposedly stopped terrorist attacks in the United States. According to Google, O’Brien has a net worth of 50 million dollars. He drives customized Mercedes and bulletproof Hummers. He was born in County Wexford, Ireland, in February 1975. O’Brien is the founder and CEO of Scorpion Computer Services, the inspiration for the CBS television series Scorpion. Crazy as it sounds, before September 2021, I’d never heard of Walter O’Brien or the TV show Scorpion—but I digress.
Walter O’Brien has a reported IQ of 197—yes, a true genius. A genius that looked into my eyes and told me I was toxic—but he wasn’t finished sharing his thoughts about who I was and how I wasted over 35 years of my life pursuing happiness.
Walter O’Brien doesn’t value the pursuit of happiness, and in my opinion, he disdains anyone that does. But before I go any further, I want to be crystal clear. I have no idea what O’Brien’s intentions were, but his judgments directed at me added fuel to the fire I will never let die until I breathe my last breath. One thing is for sure; Walter O’Brien values doing over being. Oh, and guess what—he has a reputation for rarely smiling.
Our conversation lasted maybe 15 minutes. In that brief period, Mr. O’Brien dropped several more proverbial bombs on my head, and I cannot wait to share them with you.
On September 23, 2021, Walter O’Brien told me;
• I wasted 35+ years of my life studying and pursuing happiness.
• I contribute ZERO to this planet.
• Searching for happiness and inner peace is delusional.
• What I’ve accomplished can’t be measured; therefore, I’ve accomplished nothing. (One of my personal favorites)
• I’m selfish.
• I’m toxic.
• If the clients I counsel don’t employ at least 1,000 individuals, I’m wasting time and accomplishing nothing.
I’ve been cursed, insulted, and called every name in the book before meeting O’Brien because what I teach is not popular. What I teach is disruptive, controversial, contentious, and requires long sessions in the mirror. And unfortunately, there are not too many people rushing to look in the mirror for solutions to their unhappiness.
Walter O’Brien, what I can measure now is that what I practice and teach works because the TRUTH is;
1. Words do not innately have power. Now I realize the masses have been programmed to believe the opposite is true; words are powerful. But the truth is whatever you learn; you can unlearn, especially if you want to experience more happiness. For example, it took me decades to master the practiced skill of not allowing words to offend, disrespect, belittle or hurt my feelings.
2. It’s never personal—even if someone is speaking directly to you.
3. Whatever negative name or label someone calls you, know they’re describing themselves.
4. There are 360 degrees in a circle. My practice includes consciously searching for more than one perspective during any situation or personal challenge. Unfortunately, as brilliant as O’Brien claims to be, he can only manage to muster one perspective regarding this individual’s pursuit of happiness.
5. What does the man with a hump in his back want more than anything else? Answer: He wants you to have a hump too.
No, Mr. O’Brien, your words and your single perspective had zero effect on me. You heard my laughter as I listened to your description of me; toxic, selfish, delusional with a zero effect in the world. Our conversation on that fateful night helped validate what I’ve always known to be the truth. The pursuit of happiness is what the masses seek, but not too many find. Why? Because happiness, inner peace and contentment are practiced skills.
The Five Most Common Regrets of the Dying, is a study conducted by Australian hospice nurse Bronnie Ware. One of the five regrets of the dying is wishing they would have been happier. I believe that study is measurable.
After listening to Mr. O’Brien’s perspective of how I’ve wasted 35+ years of my life, I asked him to take a selfie with me and he agreed. Yes, I memorialized one of my favorite moments in Life. Why? Because the practice works.
It doesn’t matter to me that happiness and inner peace are not celebrated, honored, awarded, or valued in today’s world. Individuals will eventually discover the value and truth about happiness just like the hospice patients did.
My definition of happiness? The ability to vibrate an energy of inner peace and contentment regardless of what happens.
And finally, where’s my TV series on CBS? I’ll wait.
Happiness is a practiced skill. ~rln