Word of the Week

Word of the Week: Glimmer

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Good morning friends! Can you remember the last time a feeling came out of nowhere and shocked you by its presence? 

Usually we think of such in negative terms. For example, you could happily be going about your day living your best life and then, a feeling of anger, frustration or grief just surprises. Something you see or do triggers emotion and you must experience it (like or it not) right then. My widowed mother-in-law tells me this is why she sometime cries in the grocery store or at the post office. . . 

But, this week, I encountered a term, the opposite of this negative experience, and it's glimmer.

Glimmer: a sign coming of something good or positive. 

It's also a psychological word coined in 2018 by author Deb Dana. She describes it in technical terms as small moments when our body is in a place of connection or regulation, so that our nervous system feels safe or calm. So instead of our body reacting "out of sorts" to an experience in daily life (a trigger), a glimmer is a soul expanding experience that is a building block of love for our future self. 

You see, glimmers aren't found in some "long-time comin' conversation" with a friend that you finally have after 2 years. Or in a moment when you get a much deserved promotion at work. Or when you finally sell your house that has been a market forever. Nope!

Glimmers are when you have enough breathing space in your day that you see the good right where you are.

You notice the hues of a sunset.

You laugh with a child. 

You feel the warmth of the sun on your arms. 

You hold someone's hand. 

If you can stay present in these moments (without rushing to the next thing), your life glimmers before your eyes. And your heart softens just a little, preparing you to notice more glimmers in the day to come. 

I have to think that this is what the Psalm that speaks of "Be still and know that I am God" is all about. 

God's goodness can still abound to us even if our lives are imperfect and filled with pain. It's simply our soul's work to let the glimmers in. 

There's a stained glass piece hanging in my kitchen. In the morning, it glimmers with colors of orange, red, green on my kitchen floor if the sun is out. It's beautiful and reminds me of this: the light somehow, someway always finds a way in. 

I'm hoping the same for you in the week ahead, may the glimmers find you just when you need them the most. 



P.S. Interested in learning more about what a glimmer is? ​This article​ is a great summary. Or this one might give you some ideas about what is ​a glimmer for you.​