What A Glow Up Really Is- Because It’s Not Just About Making It Big On YouTube And Writing An Ebook


The “glow up” can be used synonymously with “levelling up” “adulting” or “I have arrived (snap, snap) “.

In fact there are whole college courses dedicated to teaching individuals how to “adult”.
CBS news reports that young adults are signing up for these courses on and off line.

During these courses you can learn how to manage finances, time, navigate through difficult relationships , and more.

Your glow up is not about your material success but about your ability to navigate through the uncertainties of life while maintaining a stable mental, physical, emotional, spiritual and even financial state.

That is why acquiring certain life skills makes it much easier to do so

You can have multiple glow ups during a life time, mirroring different representations of your thinking and being. This can also occur incrementally.

What’s actually happening during a glow up? It’s an internal phenomenon where you affirm or disregard believes in who you perceive yourself to be.

Simply put- it’s a decision you make about how you want to be viewed and what’s important to you.

Sure, you can be a You Tube star and write that e-book, which are great accomplishment in of themselves, but if you haven’t done any self work or are unable to manage any other area of your life then your glow up is still pending.

It may happen when you first start college and think, “ I’ve made it. Now that I’m in college I should start doing my laundry and styling my hair”.

Why? Because you now value appearance.

It may be on the first day of a new job, where you think, “I’m a personal trainer now. I have to train my mind to stay motivated, and I should to keep my body fit”.
As a result you start  reading motivational books and watching inspirational videos because you now value being reliable, dependable, and have your ideals about what a personal trainer should look like.

Other notable mentions are when people achieve a glow up after adversity in life, such as overcoming poverty, or recovering from war and trauma.

Here are some mentions of what a glow up really is.

1. A glow up is taking care of your personal hygiene.

Gone are the days of not showering for 3 days, leaving piles of wet laundry in the corner of your room, and having cracked lips. This is not about vanity, but about cleanliness. You value being well put together and presentable- just like your mother told you all along.

2. A glow up is paying attention to your health.

You may not be a vegan, yogi, kombucha drinker but you are aware of the importance of paying a little closer attention to your health. This can be seen in efforts to start an exercise plan, eating a little more leafy greens and a little less deep fried mini doughnuts.

3. A glow up is healing past trauma and striving to contribute something positive to society.

Whether you lean more towards the codependent people pleasing behaviour or the narcissistic people using behaviour- you realize that you’ve got issues. You make a conscious decision to better yourself through reading healing books from the Bible to The Art of War.
Sign up for a self development class? Sure.
Make an appointment to see a Counselor? You’re in.
Not only are you dedicated to bettering yourself but you seek to leave a lasting impact on your friends, family and the world.

4. A glow up is having a budget and managing your finances.

Financial advisor Dave Ramsey’s says that people get themselves into all types of financial situations because they don’t know how to do basic 5th grade math.
People don’t stop to think that if you have more money going out than coming in then you can’t afford the thing you want. Period.
There is a popular phrase that states, “how you do one thing is how you do everything. If your finances are chaotic, the other areas of your life will be chaotic as well; down to how you eat and handle relationships.

5. A glow up is no longer spending unnecessary energy on people and things.

There are people who misunderstand you. They get your personality all wrong.
You may be arguing with someone who you know is wrong but they can’t be convinced otherwise. What do you do?

Sometimes you just have to take one for the team and say “ok” and move on.
When you reach your glow up you don’t have to prove that you’re right, you don’t have to prove that you’re knowledgeable, you don’t have to prove anything actually.

You just are.

This is maybe the highest level of achievement in your glow up. To be who you are unapologetically; to retrospect and see how you’ve grown as a person, the adversities you’ve overcome, admitting your faults, acknowledging your limitations and rebranding yourself.

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While material success, achievements, and appearance can inclusively contribute to your glow up, that’s just the surface level.

Your glow up is a continual process of creating your persona. It’s about growth. It’s about tweaking and reducing undesirable traits in yourself and amplifying those that you want to keep.

This is a wholistic process that involves all areas of self.
It really is a decision you make about how you want to be viewed and about what’s important to you.

If your inner “glow up” also happens to arrive with short hair, red lipstick, and a new car, then more power to you.

When you’ve reached your new level of maturity and personal growth you’ve truly “glowed up”.

To your success, growth and glow up this year.






  1. Love Love Love the way you have described the “glow up” and what it really means. I had a few “ah-ha” moments so thank you for turning my lightbulb on and giving me some much needed advice! You’re a gifted writer Arlene!

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