Glimmers: The secret to everyday happiness

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Many days are filled with little frustrating moments that can easily put you on edge. Once you notice them, they can be hard to overlook. 

Whether it’s a stranger cutting you off in traffic, you accidentally dropping your phone, or even when an elevator closes on you unexpectedly, it can make your day feel like a bit of a downer. If you find yourself encountering these triggers frequently, it might be a good idea to start looking for glimmers instead. What exactly are they? And how can they benefit you? We explain this in the article below.


Glimmers are those lovely little moments that can bring a quick burst of happiness into your day, for instance, when you encounter an adorable dog at the park, step out into the warm sunshine, or enjoy that first refreshing sip of iced coffee. 

This concept was introduced by Deb Dana, a licensed clinical social worker, in her 2018 book, “The Polyvagal Theory in Therapy.” Dana suggests that keeping an eye out for glimmers can be a powerful way to regulate your nervous system, leading to an overall lighter and more cheerful feeling while reducing emotional triggers.

If you’ve heard about the idea before, it may be because the search for glimmers has recently gained popularity on TikTok. Content creators on the platform are sharing their own uplifting moments, with many expressing how this practice has significantly improved their overall well-being.


Glimmers are all around you, just waiting for you to notice. To spot them, try lifting your gaze and being more attentive. Take a moment to observe your surroundings as you stroll to work, enjoy your lunch, or browse in a store. Can you feel a gentle breeze? Perhaps you catch someone’s infectious laughter? If it fills you with joy or peace, that’s a glimmer.

Being specific can make a big difference, too. Instead of just saying, “I’m grateful for my baby,” turn it into a glimmer like, “I’m grateful for the morning walk with my baby and how she made me laugh while chasing a bird.”

The concept behind this practice is to train your mind to focus on the positive and unexpected moments in your day rather than dwelling on the negative. As you continue, you’ll begin to recognize these moments as they unfold—and enjoy them in the here and now.


Embracing glimmers is all about taking a moment to slow down and be fully present, which is the complete opposite of feeling triggered. Just like any mindfulness or gratitude practice, it might require a bit of practice and patience, but the outcomes are incredibly rewarding. 

To fully enjoy the benefits of glimmers, it’s a good idea to start journaling or writing down what you feel thankful for. Over time, this will help you appreciate the simple joys of everyday life.

After all – what would we do without our morning coffee?