Finding Light in the Darkness

4 min read
Anastasia Shuraeva/Pexels

Source: Anastasia Shuraeva/Pexels

In a world where mass shootings and the horrific tragedies of war are continually in your news feed, it’s easy to feel hopeless. Glimmers can help you achieve a more positive outlook when faced with adversity.

Glimmers are those flickers of hope, happiness, or optimism that we encounter during challenging times or when we’re feeling down. Finding glimmers can be as effortless as spotting a rainbow, listening to a child’s laughter, or experiencing a sense of achievement. Such brief instances of positivity serve as beacons of hope, aiding us in managing stress and worries while keeping us motivated.

Glimmers serve as a mechanism through which our brain stores and retrieves significant memories. They facilitate our recollection of past encounters and emotions, offering valuable insights that aid us in making informed choices.

The polyvagal theory, developed by neuroscientist Stephen Porges, sheds light on the science behind glimmers:. they are signals that guide the body into a state of vagal calmness, allowing people to experience a profound sense of safety and connection. Just as the immune system combats illnesses, the body’s nervous system can fight negative emotions through engagement of the vagus nerve. People can effectively harness such engagement to remain securely anchored in positive, optimistic, and safe emotional experiences.

What Are Ways to Access Glimmers?

Proactively exploring our glimmers helps us unleash our complete potential and serve as a source of inspiration for others. Here are ways to find the glimmers in your everyday activities.

  • Practice mindfulness: When fully present in the moment, you can notice even the smallest positive experiences, which are easy to overlook when you’re preoccupied. Mindfulness offers a much-welcomed pause.
  • Identify positive triggers: Pay attention to the activities or situations that tend to bring a smile to your face or a sense of contentment. Identifying them allows you to then actively seek them out.
  • Reflect on what brought you joy in the past: Think back to times when you felt genuinely happy or hopeful. What were the circumstances? What were you doing at the time? Revisiting such memories can provide insight into what brings you joy. That joy can help you find more glimmers.
  • Set positive intentions: Start your day with a positive intention. Even small moments of positivity can significantly influence your mental and emotional state. Studies show that regularly experiencing positive emotions can enhance your physical health, reduce stress, and even prolong your life. Looking for and appreciating even the littlest positive experiences can help you notice more glimmers.
  • Start a gratitude journal: Regularly write down things you’re grateful for. The practice can shift your focus toward the positive aspects of your life.
  • Connect with supportive people: Surround yourself with friends and family who provide emotional support and positivity. The presence and encouragement of supportive people can help you access glimmers.
  • Do activities you enjoy: Be intentional about making time for hobbies and activities that bring you joy and fulfillment. Doing what you love can create opportunities for glimmers to emerge.
  • Practice self-compassion: Be kind to yourself, especially in difficult times. Treating yourself with compassion can help you recognize and appreciate moments of self-care and self-love.
  • Seek professional help if needed: If you’re struggling with accessing glimmers due to persistent negative emotions, consider seeking professional help from therapists, counselors, or life coaches. Such professionals can guide you in developing personalized strategies to overcome negativity and cultivate a more positive outlook.

Identifying your glimmers is a journey, and it may take time and self-reflection. Be patient with yourself and embrace the process. Once you discover your glimmers, you can nurture and pursue them to bring more joy and fulfillment into your life.

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