A Grateful Heart is a Joyful Heart: My Gratitude List

Stop for a second and imagine your life without love, without food, without a place to rest your head, without laughter, without a friend to talk to, without the things that make you smile…

When I do that, even for less than 30 seconds – my mind is quick to chime in and a flood of images overwhelms me. I see my family, my husband, my children, good friends, my home, our messy beds, a full fridge, smiling faces, and the highlight reel of memorable moments from the past week. Just the week! If I let myself fall deeper, my life’s treasures (small and big) keep coming. I remember things I forgot, I linger on the most cherished times, I sigh with contentment over the buckets and buckets of goodness I’ve experienced and presently am.

Hardship is loud, it can take room in a day, it weighs you down, exhausts you and like a dark cloud, it covers the sunshine. But the sun is still there, its exponentially more powerful, more beautiful, more penetrating and more everlasting than a passing overcast. Even when times are tough, if you can look beyond the darkness and see the light, remember the light, and cherish the light with gratitude, you will see that its power is greater. You will see that your attitude shifts and what you focus on is the the goodness you DO have. I guarantee you the list is long. It may not be conventional and if you find yourself thinking you don’t have anything worthwhile to add to it look again, without societal standards or ideals or comparison; look microscopically for even the tiniest thing to be thankful for, because  it’s there – buckets and buckets of goodness. 

I have so much to be grateful for and I can assure you it’s not because I’ve had a life without difficulties. Sometimes, I lose sight of the overflowing blessings in my life, but all it takes is for me to stop the busyness, the worry, the doubt – the dark clouds rolling in – to see the abundance of sunshine.

Today I’m sharing with you a few of the things I’ve written down in my gratitude journal this week. I hope it will inspire you to take a moment to shift your attention to every happiness in your life.

With love and gratitude,


I’m grateful for my family. They are everything in this world to me – and more. I’m thankful for each one of them, for their unique personalities, their smiles, their hearts, for the things that make them well, them! 

After a month long of being sick with a cold, the flu, and finally a sinus infection, I’m thankful for my health. Even when I was at what felt like my worse, I was thankful my sickness was treatable and manageable. 

So often, we belittle our achievements or set them in comparison to others. That makes zero sense. Everyone’s path is different, the road the’ve been on if vastly unique, and every step of the way they’ve overcome challenges and accomplished things that may look similar on the outside, but are theirs alone. I’m grateful for what I’ve achieved and overcome in my life. 

Wouldn’t life be boring without all the things that catch our attention, make us think differently, cause us to want to create, live, dream, build, do! I’m grateful for all the inspiration floating around in this world. 

I’m grateful for the path I’m on and the joy it brings me each day. I’m not joyful ALL day long. Haha. But it rises up in moments with my husband, my children, my work, a nature walk, cooking in the kitchen…small, everyday stuff when I realize what I’ve got (gratitude!) and joy bubbles up. 

My days are full, from a heavy work load to taking care of my household and family – there’s lots to do. But when an opportunity arises to help another, even in a small way, I try my best to meet it. From giving beneficial advice to someone beginning a blog or opening a door for someone who could use a hand, helping others comes in many different shapes and forms and I’m grateful I can help others in small and big ways. 

I’m grateful for sweet friends and the good times we’ve shared. Whether it’s new ones or olds ones, past or present – good times with good friends is always cherished. 

It’s hard for me to ask for help, but I’m so grateful for all the times I’ve received help from others. Whether they’ve volunteered or helped me after I’ve (finally) reached out – it means the world. 

For the strangers who open the door when I had grocery bags and a baby in my arms, helped move a couch into my home, carried me out and from my burning car after an accident (okay, that probably was an angel, but also a stranger to me), who ran after me when I left my wallet behind…the list goes on! I’m grateful for all the times a stranger has shown me kindness – it’s not been overlooked. 

I’m grateful for the good and nutritious food my family and I have. In this world, where so many go hungry, I don’t ever want to take for granted that my family has food to eat. Good food, no less. If you can, please remember to give to your local food bank and school breakfast club to help feed your community. 

My husband and I have pretty deep conversations ever day, and I love that. I’ve always enjoyed having meaningful conversations with family and friends, and I’m grateful I have that in my life.

 Feel free to let me know what you are grateful for today! You can leave me a comment below or tag me in a share on Twitter or Facebook.

Emily Smith
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