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100+ Things To Be Grateful For When You’re Feeling Down

Trying to conjure up things to be grateful for can be really difficult during tough times.

Sometimes, it can feel as if nothing is going your way and you end up trapped in a negative cycle.

Other times, mental health issues, such as depression and anxiety, can get in the way of feeling any joy whatsoever.

Trust me, I know.

This is why I’ve put together 100+ things to be grateful for in the hope that some will resonate with you and help you practise gratitude a little easier, even if you’re feeling low.

Does feeling grateful help your mindset?

Learning how to feel grateful can massively help improve your mindset and mental health.

Practising gratitude – the act of acknowledging and appreciating what IS going right for you in life – is actually something many experts have begun to recommend to help dig yourself out of feeling low.

(My own therapist recommended it for me.)

Studies show that being thankful for what you have, instead of focusing on what you don’t have, can improve not just your mindset but mental health too.

What feeling grateful does is take your focus off what’s going wrong for you in your life.

While dealing with negative situations and emotions is also imperative when it comes to healing your mindset, it’s not good to dwell on them.

A woman wrapped in a duvet holding a mug of coffee and writing in her journal in bed

Chasing that rabbit down the rabbit hole usually only leads to more rabbits.

What I mean by that is: Once you’ve entertained that negative thought and sunk into a depressive hole, it’s probably going to lead to more negative thoughts.

When you spend a lot of time thinking about negative things – like the things you don’t have – you get trapped in this cycle.

Thinking negatively almost becomes a habit.

In the same way, by flipping the switch and focusing on things to be grateful for – what we DO have – we can almost retrain our brain to think more positively.

How to practise gratitude

There are a few main ways to practise gratitude.

My favourite ways are:

#1. Gratitude journaling

Probably the most popular way to practise feeling thankful is starting a gratitude journal.

This involves simply listing a few things that you’re grateful for every morning.

Listing the things you’re most grateful for in the morning is a perfect way to get your day started on a positive note.

A journal on a desk; the cover reads, "today I am grateful"

Some people only list three things they’re grateful for, some list 10. (I personally write five.) So feel free to find what works for you, your schedule, and your mindset.

You can also repeat this in the evening if you feel called to.

#2. Gratitude affirmations

Gratitude affirmations can also be really helpful when it comes to affirming what you’re grateful for.

Not only are affirmations wonderful for our mindset – affirmations that help us practise gratitude are even better.

Here’s a list of affirmations specifically aimed at gratitude to get you started.

#3. Practise gratitude in everyday life

Arguably one of the easiest ways to practise gratitude is to incorporate it into your everyday life by being mindful.

This may be as literal as telling people in your life you’re grateful for them and/or what they’ve done, or this might mean silently being thankful as you go about your day.

For example, if you’re going for a walk in the park, you might silently be thankful that you have access to said park.

You catch my drift?

Getting into the habit of being thankful for everything and generally quite positive helps you feel more capable when things to do go wrong.

A woman leaning out a car window with her arm outstretched

#4. Gratitude meditation

It’s a common misconception that meditation is all about totally clearing your mind or any and all thoughts. This is almost impossible since we’re humans and humans like to think.

What meditation is REALLY about is mindfulness.

It’s about acknowledging and observing our thoughts before releasing them.

This is why meditation is so good for mental health issues like anxiety; it helps breathe new life into your body and encourage you to observe your thoughts from a place of non-judgement.

This can also help when practising gratitude as it can improve your ability to put things into perspective and find things to be grateful for.

When it comes to specific gratitude meditations, there are plenty of amazing guided ones on YouTube that can help you tap into your inner joy and truly feel thankful.

How can I be grateful for everything?

Right now, I can hear what a lot of you are thinking: ‘How can I be grateful for everything when my life feels like it’s in tatters right now? How can I be grateful for everything when I don’t have anything to be grateful for?’

Look, I get you. I’ve been there.

When I’m going through a depressive episode, conjuring up things to be grateful for feels like an impossible task.

I feel as if everything’s going wrong, that I have nothing going for me, and that nothing in my life will ever go well again.

Scrabble pieces spelling out "thank you"

Firstly, it’s important to point out that while your feelings are valid, feelings are not facts.

Just because you feel as if you have nothing good in your life doesn’t make it automatically true.

This is where practising meditation and mindfulness comes in because it helps you get some objective perspective on your situation.

Secondly – and this may surprise you – but you don’t HAVE to be grateful for everything.

When you start completely ignoring the bad and burying your head in the sand, that’s when you actually start running into more issues.

This isn’t ‘looking at the bright side’ or ‘seeing the silver lining.’ This is toxic positivity and it does NOT help your mindset or mental health. Quite the opposite.

When something bad happens, it’s important to acknowledge it and FEEL the negative emotions.

CRY, scream into a pillow, attack a punching bag – release the emotions if you need to and forgive yourself for them.

FEEL to heal.

Deal with the situation and emotions as they come up so that you can not only overcome them, but become better equipped at dealing with similar emotions/situations in the future.

You don’t need to feeling grateful for everything because not everything is worth feeling grateful for!

Some things are s***. And that’s that!

Please never feel guilty for feeling depressed, anxiety, or disappointed.

What should I be grateful for today?

If you’re struggling to think of things to be grateful for, here’s a list of mine.

Not all of these will necessarily apply to or resonate with you – we’re all different, as are our situations – so if you read one something on the list that you don’t personally feel gratitude for, simply move on.

  1. Pretty sunrises
  2. Stunning sunsets
  3. Autumn leaves
  4. Winter frost
  5. The changing of the seasons
  6. Snow (+ cat’s pawprints in snow)
  7. Summer warmth on the back of my neck
  8. The smell of rain on concrete during spring
  9. A roof over my head
  10. The cold side of the pillow
  11. The smell and feel of clean bedding
  12. A bed to sleep on
  13. The smell of coffee
  14. Meditation and the calmness it brings me
  15. The ability to think for myself
  16. The opportunity to grow as a human
  17. Getting to experience life
  18. Access to food and water
  19. The smell of freshly baked bread
  20. Having a body
  21. My heart for still beating
  22. Laughter, especially crying with laughter
  23. Good movies
  24. My hands for typing and writing
  25. My hair for keeping my head warm on crisp, winter days
  26. Tea!
  27. Internet access
  28. Journaling
  29. Yoga
  30. Candles
  31. The positive people in my life
  32. Life lessons
  33. The people who have done me wrong – they’ve taught me lessons too
  34. Every bad situation that I’ve overcome and learned from
  35. The birds singing in the trees
  36. Dogs because… dogs
  37. ALL animals
  38. My bones for holding me up when I felt like falling down
  39. My lungs for seeing me through many a panic attack
  40. My digestive system for hanging in there, despite all the abuse
  41. My strength of character
  42. My humour, even in times of adversity
  43. My self-awareness, which improves every day
  44. My mouth for giving me a voice to speech my truth
  45. My ability to love, in spite of everything
  46. My ability to be honest with myself
  47. Running water
  48. The discovery of ASMR
  49. Having clothes in general
  50. My kindness
  51. My empathy
  52. My compassion
  53. Hugs
  54. Passion
  55. Music and the emotion that music makes me feel
  56. True friends that have my back
  57. Pretty crystals
  58. Flowers
  59. My family (or whatever family means to you)
  60. Touch
  61. The ability to cry and release emotion
  62. The stars in the sky
  63. The moon because she’s a beauty
  64. Rainbows
  65. The kindness of strangers
  66. The many, (many) mistakes I’ve made and grown from
  67. The person I used to be for teaching me lessons I’ll never forget
  68. The person I am for who I am
  69. The person I’m going to be
  70. The universe
  71. The planets – especially Venus, I love her
  72. Tarot cards
  73. Energy and the movement of it
  74. Pineapple on pizza – THERE, I said it!
  75. Salted caramel – whoever invented it deserves a knighthood or something
  76. Hot chocolate on a frosty morning
  77. Oat milk because giving up cow’s milk changed my life
  78. Whatever Netflix show I’m currently binge-watching
  79. Platforms that allow creatives (including myself) to thrive while doing what they love
  80. The opportunity to give gifts
  81. Lay-ins
  82. The ability and drive to educate myself long after leaving University
  83. Books
  84. Beanie hats because I look cute AF in them
  85. Snacks – ALL snacks
  86. The first cup of coffee in the morning – it hits different
  87. Self-love
  88. Alone time – and the self-awareness I have to know when I need it
  89. Self-care – face masks, hot showers, painting my nails etc
  90. Discovering shadow work
  91. Planners and stickers
  92. My sobriety (personal to me, but it might apply to some of you)
  93. My dedication to healing myself
  94. Fluffy socks
  95. Cosy jumpers/sweaters
  96. Leggings because, again, COMFY
  97. My individual ~style~
  98. The freedom to be my most true authentic self
  99. People who I align and ~vibe~ with
  100. The feeling of Friday evening
  101. Sunday mornings
  102. Endorphins after working out
  103. Hearing other people belly laugh at a joke I’ve told
  104. Naps
  105. A good night’s sleep
  106. Nostalgia

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