Do you take time to feel thankful for the blessings in your life?
Even during difficult times, there are so many things to be grateful for. In fact, intentionally focusing on gratitude can make you feel happier and help you recognize that you have far more good than bad in your life.
In the United States, Thanksgiving Day is around the corner, and it’s the perfect time to make (or review) your list of things to be thankful for.
So, to help, we’ve made a list of things to be thankful for — along with reasons to be thankful for what you have.
Feel free to use this list as you create your own, and enjoy the opportunity to bask in gratitude for a while.
And if you ever get stumped when someone asks you (maybe at the Thanksgiving table), “What are you thankful for?” consider the lists that follow as your launch pad.
And don’t forget why we give thanks in the first place. It isn’t all about the food.
Benefits of Gratitude
So, what do you gain by being more grateful? Why should you ask yourself (before anyone else gets the chance), “What am I thankful for?”
Check out some of the benefits of being more mindful of your blessings:
- Deeper and more mindful enjoyment of the present — and the people in it
- More energy and increased mental clarity
- A better frame of mind for forgiveness
- A stronger feeling of connection to and solidarity with others
- More patience with others (and with yourself)
- Greater generosity with others (and with yourself)
- Less waste and more sharing
- Less anxiety and better sleep
- Better resilience and mental health
Gratitude is good for all of you — body, mind, and spirit. Every breath of life is cause enough for gratitude, but from the moment we wake up in the morning, it’s so much easier to focus on things that will ultimately fade from memory.
Until it becomes a solid habit, it takes an effort to begin with the words “I am thankful for…” and finish with at least one thing, which could be the fact that you’re alive for another morning.
Thanksgiving Day is your annual reminder to spend more time in mindful gratitude for the present and for everyone and everything that makes your life worth living or more enjoyable.
50 Things To Be Thankful For List
1. Love — specifically our ability to give and receive love
2. Family — even those who are currently hard to be around
3. Friends — besides those you’re related to
4. Your pet/s — or those of your family members or friends
5. Your income — from a job, freelance work, etc.
6. Business connections — bosses, coworkers, clients, and other business partners
7. Good neighbors — because you’d rather not move (yet)
8. Forgiveness and goodwill — our ability to forgive and to want the good of others (including those who’ve hurt us)
9. Patience — specifically other people’s patience with you and the moments when you were challenged to mindfully practice patience
10. Hope — in spite of the bumps in the road
11. Time — every minute you’ve had up to now and this new day
12. Quiet time — for meditation, reflection, and recovery
13. Vision (eyesight) — and everything that improves it
14. Your health — strong heart, clear lungs, functioning kidneys, etc.
15. Your education — from birth until now
16. Your mobility — the ability to get around (on your feet, by driving, etc.)
17. Your home — and everything in it (that belongs there)
18. Your food — every bite and drink of nourishment you’ve had and that you’ll have today
19. Your clothes — every stitch of clothing you’ve worn and will wear today
20. Your personal accomplishments — everything you have reason to be (humbly) proud of
21. Your professional greatest hits — everything you’ve accomplished that has contributed to your professional development
22. Your creations — other than your kids
23. Your car/s — every car you’ve had that has gotten you to where you wanted to go, and the car/s you have now
24. Books you’ve read (and enjoyed) — including those you’re still reading
25. Movies and shows you’ve seen and enjoyed
26. Things and people who have made you laugh until it hurts
27. New and eye-opening programs/courses — and what you’ve learned from them
28. Air conditioning (in the summer) — or whatever helped you stay cool
29. Heating (in the colder months) & fuel for the furnace — and everything else that helped you stay warm
30. Trees — for their beauty, habitats, firewood, etc.
31. Wind — for the exhilarating beauty it brings to trees, water, fallen leaves, etc. (especially when it’s not destroying things)
32. Rain — for its beauty and its soothing sounds (when it doesn’t cause flooding)
33. Snow — for its beauty, for the perfect calm of a windless snowfall, and for snow days (mainly for the snow that is not on the roads)
34. Drinking water — all its beauty and restorative power and with nothing added that takes away from it
35. Oceans, lakes, rivers, streams, etc. — for their beauty and for the habitats they provide
36. Electricity — on which we depend for so much (keeping food cold, cooking, lighting, etc.)
37. Indoor plumbing — enough said (though that TARDIS-themed outhouse is still worth considering)
38. The Internet — so we can work from home, stay connected with family and friends in other states, get our words out into the world, etc.
39. Email — for personal and business use (less stressful for many of us than talking on the phone)
40. Texting — a boon to introverts everywhere (ditto on the phone thing)
41. Ebooks and reading apps — including Kindle and Kobo (makes your smartphone entertaining even when there’s no WiFi and you’re sharing a data plan with someone)
42. Audiobooks and audiobook apps — including Audible, Kobo, and public library app (some books are even better when someone else reads them to you)
43. Other tools that help you make the most of each day — alarm clock, calendar, Trello, music playlists, and any other tools you use regularly
44. Journals — for all the ways they help you make sense out of life (and yourself) and create the life you want
45. Farmer’s markets — think raw honey (magic for sore throats) and fresh, crunchy apples, along with starter plants for your garden, pumpkins, homemade jam, etc.
46. Flip-flops — which may be the only form of footwear one of your kids will tolerate — even when there’s snow on the ground (tell me I’m not alone)
47. Frozen snacks — berries, tropical fruit, thin mints, etc.
48. Fresh, hot coffee (or tea) in the morning — or throughout the day (every warm mug you’ve sipped from and those you enjoy today
49. Functioning laundry machines — because you don’t appreciate them as much as when they stop working
50. Fresh, breathable air — because without it…. (also, on an odd but related personal note, breath mints, VapoRub, and air filters)
18 “Thankful for You” Sayings
1. “In everyone’s life, at some time, our inner fire goes out. It is then burst into flame by an encounter with another human being. We should all be thankful for those people who rekindle the inner spirit.” – Albert Schweitzer (for those who stoke the fire in you)
2. “Gratitude is one of the least articulate of the emotions, especially when it is deep.” – Felix Frankfurter (for when you’re so grateful, you struggle to put it into words).
3. “When eating a fruit, think of the person who planted the tree.” – Vietnamese Proverb (for all the good fruit that others’ words and actions have yielded in your life)
4. “By the way, I’m wearing the smile that you gave me.” – Unknown (for those who make you smile when you think of them)
5. “You may forget with whom you laughed, but you will never forget with whom you wept.” – Kahlil Gibran (for those who have mourned with you)
6. “There is no better way to thank God for your sight than by giving a helping hand to someone in the dark.” – Helen Keller (for those who have helped you find your way)
7. “No matter how sure you are that a friend will be there for you, it’s the greatest feeling when the time comes, and there they are.” – Robert Brault (for those who have been there for you when it mattered most)
8. “Thank you, dear God, for this good life and forgive us if we do not love it enough. Thank you for the rain. And for the chance to wake up in three hours and go fishing: I thank you for that now, because I won’t feel so thankful then.” – Garrison Keillor (for those who bless us in ways that don’t always feel like blessings)
9. “Thank you to our farmers for all you do to keep food on our tables.” – Elise Stefanik
10. ”You know how some folks will answer your soul-searching question with a long, stream-of-consciousness monologue that has nothing to do with your question and then, when you try to remind them of the question, they ask you not to interrupt…. Thank you for never doing that. Thank you for listening, for asking thoughtful questions, and for not interrupting. It means a lot. Really. I cannot thank you enough!” – Anonymous (for the good conversation partners in your life)
11. “We can only be said to be alive in those moments when our hearts are conscious of our treasures.” — Thornton Wilder (for those who make you feel most alive when you’re thinking of them)
12. “Thanks to those who listened; you made me feel like I was worth it.” – Unknown (for those who have taken the time to really listen to you)
13. “Those who bring sunshine to the lives of others cannot keep it from themselves.” — Gordon T. Watts (for the people in your life who light you up inside).
14. “To get the full value of joy, you must have someone to divide it with.” — Mark Twain (for those with whom you share your joy – from the greatest to the smallest)
15. “A friend may well be reckoned the masterpiece of nature.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson (for your best friends, who are miracles as well as masterpieces)
16. “I have learned that to be with those I like is enough.” — Walt Whitman (for all those whose company you enjoy)
17. “Sweet is the memory of distant friends! Like the mellow rays of the departing sun, it falls tenderly, yet sadly, on the heart.” — Washington Irving (for friends who are far away)
18. “Thank you for seeing past my attempts to be brave and to spare you the drama of what I’m going through. Thank you for wanting my company even when I’m pretty sure I’m hard to be around. Because of you, I know what a friend is.” – Anonymous (for someone who has demonstrated the best side of empathy)
18. “You’re my favorite bowl of soup when I’m cold, and the freshest, coldest water when I’m overheated and tired. You’re the seasoning on my chicken and the crunchy bits in my salad. You make everything better!” – Anonymous
30 Thankfulness Quotes for Any Occasion
1. “Never take anything for granted.” — Benjamin Disraeli
2. “I’m thankful to be breathing, on this side of the grass. Whatever comes, comes.” — Ron Perlman
3. “I’m grateful for always this moment, the now, no matter what form it takes.” — Eckhart Tolle
4. “Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend.” — Melody Beattie
5. ”Make it a habit to tell people thank you. To express your appreciation, sincerely and without the expectation of anything in return. Truly appreciate those around you, and you’ll soon find many others around you. Truly appreciate life, and you’ll find that you have more of it.” — Ralph Marston
6. “No duty is more urgent than that of returning thanks.” — James Allen
7. “A grateful heart is a beginning of greatness. It is an expression of humility. It is a foundation for the development of such virtues as prayer, faith, courage, contentment, happiness, love, and well-being.” — James E. Faust
8. “Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow.” — Melody Beattie
9. “Gratitude opens the door to the power, the wisdom, the creativity of the universe. You open the door through gratitude.” — Deepak Chopra
10. “The real gift of gratitude is that the more grateful you are, the more present you become.” — Robert Holden
11. “It is through gratitude for the present moment that the spiritual dimension of life opens up.” — Eckhart Tolle
12. “Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues but the parent of all others.” — Cicero
13. “Have gratitude for the things you’re discarding. By giving gratitude, you’re giving closure to the relationship with that object, and by doing so, it becomes a lot easier to let go.” — Marie Kondo
14. “The essence of all beautiful art, all great art, is gratitude.” — Friedrich Nietzsche
15. “Nothing new can come into your life unless you are grateful for what you already have.” — Michael Bernhard
16. “When you rise in the morning, give thanks for the light, for your life, for your strength. Give thanks for your food and for the joy of living. If you see no reason to give thanks, the fault lies in yourself.” — Tecumseh
17. “Of all the characteristics needed for both a happy and morally decent life, none surpasses gratitude. Grateful people are happier, and grateful people are more morally decent.” — Dennis Prager
18. “I was complaining that I had no shoes till I met a man who had no feet.” — Confucius
19. “Gratitude bestows reverence, allowing us to encounter everyday epiphanies, those transcendent moments of awe that change forever how we experience life and the world.” – John Milton
20. “Gratitude helps you to grow and expand; gratitude brings joy and laughter into your life and into the lives of all those around you.” – Eileen Caddy
21. “Appreciation can make a day — even change a life. Your willingness to put it into words is all that is necessary.” – Margaret Cousins
22. “The roots of all goodness lie in the soil of appreciation for goodness.” – Dalai Lama
23. “Thank you, universe, for all the good things in my life that I don’t yet know about…” – Unknown
24. “In ordinary life we hardly realize that we receive a great deal more than we give and that it is only with gratitude that life becomes rich.” – Dietrich Bonhoeffer
25. “He is a wise man who does not grieve for the things which he has not, but rejoices for those which he has.: – Epictetus
26. “Saying thank you creates love.” – Daphne Rose Kingma
27. “Trade your expectations for appreciation and your whole world changes in an instant.” – Tony Robbins
28. ”None is more impoverished than the one who has no gratitude. Gratitude is a currency that we can mint for ourselves, and spend without fear of bankruptcy.” – Fred De Witt Van Amburgh
29. “Wake at dawn with a winged heart, and give thanks for another day of loving.” Kahlil Gibran
30. “If we don’t feel grateful with what we already have, what makes us think we will be happy with more?” – Unknown
Why You Need A Gratitude List
Whatever you’re doing, having a gratitude list reminds you of the goodness in your life and to be grateful for all of it, especially when the weight of your concerns lies heavily on your shoulders.
It’s easy to get distracted by whatever is going wrong. It’s more urgent. It cries out for your attention and arouses all the powerful negative emotions that go with it. It feels like an emergency, even when it isn’t.
Gratitude, though, is always important. Without it, the good things in your life go off the radar, and the bad things are all you see — and all you seem to have room for.
Without gratitude, nothing else makes sense. With it, everything that belongs in your life falls into place.
So, think of your Thanksgiving gratitude list as your annual soul check — and as an early Christmas gift to yourself.
30 Gratitude Cards (Free Printable Download)
Are there special people in your life you are thankful for? Show your appreciation with a “random act of gratitude” during the next 30 days.
Download our free printable thank you words of appreciation and share them with friends, family, or school teachers!
Here’s what you do:
1. Download the PDF printable gratitude list pages (immediate access, no opt-in required).
2. Make additional copies of the pages if you wish.
3. Cut the thankfulness messages along the dotted lines.
4. Over the next 30 days, leave these surprise gratitude messages for others to brighten their day. Put them on your spouse’s pillow, on a friend’s car, on a co-worker’s desk, or in a stranger’s mailbox.
Did you enjoy this list of things to be thankful for?
If you found value in this article, I hope you’ll share it and encourage others to pass it on. Whatever kind of day you’re having, by focusing on what you are thankful for, you remind others to do the same, and you spread the wealth of the benefits that go with it.
Though not all the items listed are specific things for which to be grateful, each can serve to trigger a memory that will make it easier for you to compose your own gratitude list. And that’s the whole purpose of this article.
May you be blessed, and may you share those blessings with others.