215 Things to Be Thankful For in Life (Even if You’re Struggling)

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It's nice to pause and take time to be thankful for the important things. This is especially during the important moments in life like:

  • Thanksgiving or Christmas
  • Marriage
  • The birth of a child
  • A big promotion at work
  • Buying your first home.
  • Graduations
  • Or other special holidays with loved ones.

Most people don’t take the time to think about the small things they encounter in life. The things that should fill their lives with joy and happiness on a daily basis. That's why we've compiled this list of 215 things to be thankful for and grateful for in your life.

Whether you're celebrating a holiday like Thanksgiving with family and friends OR you're looking for small reasons why life is great, you'll discover a wide range of ideas you can use to express gratitude. And at the end of the post, we'll talk about how to make gratitude an important part of your life.

Sidebar: If you'd like to learn more about creating more thankfulness in your life and practicing daily gratitude​, then I suggest checking out this 90-day gratitude journal 

Let's get started by talking about the importance of being thankful for what you have in life.

Why It's Important to Be Thankful

You might wonder:

“Why should I take time to express gratitude?”

The simple answer is that gratitude can have a wide-range of psychological and physical benefits.

It can:

  • Increase your personal happiness.
  • Help you get better sleep.
  • Increases our success at work.
  • Improves our relationships.
  • Makes you healthier.
  • Increases your energy.
  • Helps us relax.
  • Helps you live longer.
  • …Plus, much, much more.

It has been shown that gratitude is a keystone habit — a simple behavior that can have a positive impact on many different aspects of you life.

So if you'd like to learn more about this concept, then check out this massive, well researched article on the 31 benefits of gratitude. Here you can learn more about the research and science behind expressing gratitude on a regular basis.

Now, that said, let's dive into the first list of things to be thankful for in life.

215 Things to Be Thankful For in 2021

2020 was not the best of years. It gave us Covid-19, isolation, extreme weather disasters and political upheaval all in one bad year. Perhaps the worst year in my memory. So you could simply be thankful in 2021 that it is no longer 2020.

But even 2020 had many things to be thankful for. And it is actually more important to be thankful for the blessing you have when times are tough than when they are going well.

So let\s start this list with the important things in life — the ones that we often take for granted. Then we'll move on to small items that might seem important, but can often brighten your day.

(Side note: Some of these items might not apply to your personal situation. So feel free to skip anything that doesn't personally resonate with you.)

  1. Holidays where you can spend time with the important people in l
  2. Having a romantic partner or spouse who is there for you
  3. Being surrounded by friends and family
  4. Your children
  5. Having access to clean, drinkable water
  6. Not being hungry and having an abundance of food
  7. Having a roof over your head and safe place to live
  8. Your parents who raised and molded you in the person you are today
  9. Kindness from strangers and random acts of kindness
  10. Mistakes that helped you grow as a person
  11. Modern conveniences that weren't available even a century ago (electricity, indoor plumbing, air conditioning)
  12. Having full use of your senses like eye-sight, hearing, and taste
  13. A new book
  14. Not being hungry and having an abundance of food
  15. The ability to learn something new
  16. The kindness of strangers
  17. A warm campfire on a cold night camping
  18. Feeling of acceptance
  19. The beauty of a work of art that moves you
  20. Making a final payment on a loan
  21. A nice hot shower
  22. Healthy foods
  23. Equality and diversity
  24. The voice of a friend or relative you have not seen in a long time.The ability to work from home -in your pajamas
  25. A beautiful sunrise
  26. The sound of a song you love
  27. Simply relaxing and playing a board game with friends or family
  28. Catching up with your favorite blog
  29. Having a personal routine that helps you accomplish tasks efficiently
  30. The smell of freshly baked cookies
  31. Creating a gift for a family member with your own two hands. (crochet, woodworking, art etc.)
  32. Surprises
  33. Access to the medication you need to stay healthy.
  34. Free time on your “to do” list
  35. A hot cup of tea
  36. A home that is free of clutter
  37. The sincere appreciation of others
  38. A movie that makes you laugh
  39. Amazon Prime
  40. The mother who gave you life, nurtured you, loved you, taught you and supported you.
  41. Seeing your favorite band in concert
  42. Free apps like Todoist that can organize your life
  43. An ice cold beer after a hot day working in the yard.
  44. Questions in emails that can be resolved in a single sentence (this one always makes me happy.)
  45. New clothes
  46. The joy of rewarding yourself after completing a difficult task.
  47. The values handed down to you from your parents
  48. Entrepreneurs who constantly create technology that makes your life better
  49. Love that lasts a lifetime
  50. A really comfortable chair
  51. Realizing it has been YEARS since you have wanted a cigarette
  52. Knowing how to make a budget – and sticking to it!
  53. Visiting an amusement park.
  54. Snow days
  55. Respect from others
  56. Paydays
  57. Dancing for the pure joy of life
  58. Someone enjoying your writing/art/creativity
  59. When you're the recipient of a random act of kindness.
  60. Thank you notes
  61. Fresh popcorn — especially in a movie theater
  62. A favorite memory that you cherish
  63. An office desk with a great view
  64. Pizza
  65. The sense of accomplishment when you complete a difficult task
  66. The ability to complete a bucket list (If you don't have one, here are 553 ideas.)
  67. Puppies
  68. The feeling of uncontrollable laughter.
  69. Great Ted Talks
  70. Being pushed to “think outside the box”
  71. A massage
  72. Teachers who spent the extra time to give you the knowledge you have today
  73. Taking a morning walk
  74. Bathing in a nice warm hot tub or thermal spring
  75. Fuzzy socks
  76. Your dog or cat snuggling with you when you feel bad
  77. Faith
  78. Having easy access to clean drinking water
  79. Chocolate
  80. The ability to spend time on a hobby you love
  81. Enjoying an episode of your favorite TV show
  82. Hugs
  83. The ability to learn from your mistakes
  84. A stranger opening the door for you when your hands are full
  85. The fresh smell of clean sheets
  86. Freedom of speech
  87. Coloring to relieve stress
  88. A colorful sunset
  89. The honesty of a child
  90. Happy people who make us happier simply by their presence
  91. The feeling of accomplishment when you stop procrastinating and complete the task you have been avoiding
  92. Memories of your first kiss
  93. Enjoying a movie marathon
  94. The freedom of choice
  95. Internal strength
  96. A child’s face after they get a presen
  97. Spellchecker
  98. Being in love
  99. Foreign cultures we can visit and learn from
  100. Having a vibrant imagination
  101. Meeting up with your friends for lunch
  102. That new car smell
  103. Being accountable for your actions
  104. Trying new things. (even if it is simple – like a new cup of coffee)
  105. Old photographs
  106. Technology – for allowing us to stay closely connected with friends and family regardless of distance
  107. Netflix and other streaming service options that provide an abundance of viewing options
  108. A safe landing after a rough plane ride
  109. Positivity — even when things are difficult
  110. Visiting new places, especially ones you've always dreamed of seeing
  111. Getting a full night's sleep (If you struggle with this, then here are 17 ways to fall asleep easier.)
  112. Home cooked meals
  113. The pride of owning a home.
  114. The first flower of Spring
  115. Home cooked meals
  116. The pride of owning a home.
  117. The first flower of Spring
  118. Having a morning routine that gives you energy throughout your day.
  119. The weekend
  120. Happy memories from your childhood
  121. A unseasonably warm winter day
  122. Long drives listening to a great podcast or audiobook
  123. Therapy
  124. Real honesty
  125. People who care about the environment, human rights, and animas
  126. Meditation
  127. Your car after it has been cleaned and detailed
  128. Getting a facial
  129. Grandparents
  130. Being forgiven for my mistakes
  131. Finding unexpected money in your pockets
  132. Sitting down for dinner time with family
  133. Aromatherapy
  134. The fresh smell of a Christmas tree
  135. The snooze button
  136. A sibling who listens to your problems without judgement
  137. Kittens
  138. Acting like a kid again
  139. Sharing a smile with a stranger
  140. Overcoming your fears
  141. Fall when the leaves change colors
  142. Going for a swim in the ocean
  143. People who go out of their way to try to make us happy
  144. Clean air
  145. Apps that help you save money (Here are 17 good ones)
  146. Dreamers who never give up
  147. The sounds and smell of the ocean
  148. Fresh healthy smoothies
  149. Good hair days
  150. Uncontrollable laughter
  151. Having a mental health day
  152. The heavy ozone scent right before and after a thunderstorm
  153. Driving and getting nothing but green lights
  154. Cell phones
  155. Spending the night in a fancy hotel
  156. God
  157. Blinkist
  158. A warm cup of coffee
  159. Doing something spontaneous
  160. Getting your most important task completed early
  161. Cheering for your favorite team
  162. Having a picnic with your family
  163. Wearing something that makes your feel confident
  164. Wearing a pair of comfortable shoes
  165. Getting positive feedback from other
  166. Poetry
  167. Having a roof over your head
  168. Doing work that matters
  169. Taking a power nap
  170. Discussing old time times with an old friend
  171. Participating in a hobby you enjoy
  172. Watching a funny Youtube video
  173. Having the ability to read
  174. Having good friends who you can share good times with
  175. Quirky family traditions
  176. Craft beer
  177. Couponing, travel hacking, and other unique ways to drastically save money
  178. The convenience of Amazon shopping
  179. Feeling hope
  180. Feeling inspired (If you don't feel inspired, then here are 23 motivational podcasts that can help)
  181. Laughing so hard it makes you cry
  182. Healthy children
  183. Forgiving others
  184. The perfect playlist (Check out these 35 motivational songs you can add to this list)
  185. The smell of lavender
  186. My Fitbit pedometer
  187. Peace of mind
  188. The successes and accomplishments that you've achieved in your life
  189. Money in the bank
  190. Family vacation
  191. Good health
  192. Time to practice mindfulness
  193. The amazing scale of the universe
  194. Flying a kite
  195. Hearing good news
  196. Lists and organization
  197. Kindle
  198. Refreshing herbal teas
  199. Air conditioning
  200. Hiking trails where you can get out into nature
  201. A sincere apology from someone who hurt you deeply
  202. Honest conversations full of deep questions and getting to know someone better
  203. Showers with strong water pressure
  204. Walking on the beach
  205. Quiet time
  206. Free Wifi
  207. Overcoming anxieties
  208. Journaling (Here are 59 ideas to help you get started)
  209. Farmer's markets and local craft fairs
  210. Books so awesome they keep you up all night reading
  211. Apple pie
  212. Feeling like a kid again
  213. The billions of stars on a clear night sky
  214. Remembering the people you have loved
  215. People sharing your stuff on social media
Be inspired by these short thankful quotes and read this this massive list of things to be thankful for. #gratitude #gratitudequotes #thanksgiving #thankful #thankfulness #inspiration #motivation #motivationalquotes #inspirationalquotes

How to Apply This List of Things to Be Thankful For

A gratitude list like this is nice, but what can it really do for you?

This list can be used at a time like Thanksgiving, when we all stop and think about all the things we should be thankful for. But how about for the rest of the year?

The answer is that by itself it does little. But if it helps inspire you to create your own gratitude list, it can be quite valuable.

Earlier I mentioned the many benefits of gratitude and how it can improve your life.

Gratitude can transform you. It can pull you from the vortex of negativity that is sucking the life out of you and give you a renewed sense of purpose and joy.

One of the best ways to practice gratitude is by journaling. At its simplest form this gratitude journaling is taking time out, every day to think about (and write down) things that you are grateful for.

It can be as simple as writing three things you are grateful for on post-it notes every single day. Or  a bit more formal and guided, like using our 90 day gratitude journal.

I discussed the advantages of gratitude earlier.

Simply taking time everyday to think about and write out the things you are grateful for is one of the biggest ways to improve your happiness and overall quality of life.

Let’s face it, you are probably not going to double your income in the next year, and even if you could, studies show that above a family income of $75,000 per year money has ZERO effect on happiness.

So if getting ahead at work and making more money will not make you happier, what will?

The answer, of course, is thankfulness and gratitude.

So I highly encourage you to make a habit out of making a habit out of daily gratitude journaling. It doesn’t matter if you write it on yellow stickies, add it to an existing bullet journal, or use our book as a framework. Spending daily time thinking about gratitude will improve your life in a way few other things can.

So hopefully you can use this thankfulness list  as a idea generator for creating your own daily ideas of things you are grateful for. Write them down every day and make it a habit.

Here are 200 things to be thankful for and discover how to be more grateful and positive. #gratitude #thanksgiving #thankful #thankfulness #inspiration #motivation #mindfulness #mindfulmondays #conciousness #spirituality

Thankfulness Vs Gratitude: What’s the Difference

In this post, we use the terms thankfulness and gratitude interchangeably. But are they really the same thing? What are the differences between being thankful and being grateful?

The differences are actually minor, but I do think there are differences.

Thankfulness is in the moment. Gratitude is lasting.

When someone opens the door for you when you hands are full, you are thankful. You appreciate the action, but it is quickly forgotten.

On the other hand, when you are grateful it is a feeling that should last. You may not have true gratitude toward a single person opening the door, but you could feel a gratitude toward all of the people as a group who politely take the time to think of others and open doors.

Like the ‘being thankful’ quotes on this page? Why not check out this larger list of gratitude quotes.

Check out this this massive list of things to be thankful for and learn ways to be grateful. #gratitude #gratitudequotes #thanksgiving #thankful #thankfulness #inspirationalquotes #successquotes #lifequotes #positivethinking #positivity

A Final Word on Gratitude and Thankfulness

I hope you enjoyed this list of things to be thankful for.

Hopefully you will consider making a list of your own. Writing out your personal feelings of gratitude on a daily basis can do quite a bit to improve your life. Hopefully you will consider journaling your gratitude feelings every day.

Remember that being thankful or grateful is not just something for Thanksgiving, but something that should be practiced every day of your life. Realizing the blessings that abound in your life will make you happier and healthier.

On a related note, you may also find our post about how to respond to “thank you” pretty useful.

If you enjoyed this list of thankfulness ideas, I hope you will consider sharing it. Pin it. Tweet it. Email it.

It will be appreciated and I will be thankful!

​Finally, if you'd like to learn more about creating more thankfulness in your life and practicing daily gratitude, then I suggest checking out this 90-day gratitude journal

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215 Things to Be Thankful For in Life (Even if You\'re Struggling)