Self-Care

30 Things To Be Grateful For; A Gratitude List

“I hate my life”

“Nothing ever works out”

“Everything sucks”

Ah, the mantras of my youth. Until my early-twenties, I was an angsty, self-destructive pessimist who thought things like ‘mindfulness’ and ‘gratitude lists’ were just cheesy, cliched fads. 

However, there came a point in my life where I decided that even pseudo-positivity had to be better than the crippling, soul-destroying, internal agony of BPD.

So I said fuck it and, along with mindfulness, self-care routines and all the other things my edgy teenage self loathed, I wrote my first gratitude list.

Much to 14-year-old me’s disgust, it did actually help.

30 things to be grateful for #depression #anxiety

1. True Friends

They may be few and far between, but even just one true friend is a precious treasure.

2. Family

Family teaches us so much, even if it’s how not to be.

3. Belly-Laughter

Laughing until it hurts is a rare but marvellous medicine.

4. Kind-Hearted Strangers

The kindness of strangers can be one of the most uplifting, heart-warming things in the world.

5. Love

Even when it’s painful, love is what truly makes us feel alive.

6. The Internet

So much knowledge at our fingertips. So many hours of boredom killed. 

7. Your Hearing

For allowing you to hear the bird’s chirping in the morning, your favourite song, or your child’s first word. 

8. Books

For absorbing us in another reality when our own is just too much to bear. 

9. Freedom To Choose

The world is growing more progressive and some of us are lucky to live in countries where we are free to choose our own religions, professions and partners.

10. Sleep

Ah, sleep. One of the most beautiful ways to escape.

11. Sunshine

Sometimes even just the sun creeping through your window in the morning can start your day off right.

12. Sunsets

So simple, and yet so magical.

13. Music

For having the words when we can’t find them.

14. Your Sense of Smell

Whether it’s cookies baking, scented candles or the musk of your favourite person when you’re hugging them, smells can help to heal the soul.

15. Movies/TV Shows

Whether they make us laugh out loud or cry our eyes out, movies are a great distraction from our everyday lives.

16. A Place To Call Home

It doesn’t matter how modest it is – our homes are our shelters and there really is no place like them.

17. Your Eyesight

For letting you observe the beauty in the world around you, from a beautiful sunset to your loved one’s smile.

18. Your Strength

You’ve made it through 100% of your worst days. You are so much stronger than you give yourself credit for.

19. Technology

Things we once thought impossible have become part of our everyday, and technology is advancing by the second. Who knows how it will revolutionize our lives in the next few years?

20. Your Mistakes

We learn just as much from our mistakes as we do from our successes. 

21. Your Tastebuds

Sometimes eating your favourite meal can totally turn around a bad day

22. Good Physical Health

For letting you live freely and independently. 

23. Pets

Pets can make even better companions than people.

24. Your Job

In these tough times, having a permanent job is precious. If it is a job that you love, you are truly winning.

25. Your Skills and Talents

Maybe you’re tech-savvy or brilliant at maths. Maybe you can play an instrument or have an awesome sense of style. Maybe you have a charming personality or can think up some witty puns. Whatever it is, be grateful for your strengths! 

26. Social Media

We can keep in touch with people easily from anywhere in the world and maintain online friendships during those times where seeing people is just too difficult. 

27. Your Education

Being able to read and write gives us so much access to knowledge.

28. Basic Necessities 

Having access to clean water and food is definitely something we forget to be grateful for.

29. Hot Showers

Not only are they rejuvenating, but they give you that little bit of space from the outside world.

30. The Passing of Time

“Yesterday is but today’s memory, and tomorrow is today’s dream.” – Khalil Gibran

Of course, when you suffer from depression, practicing gratitude is difficult. I’ve definitely fallen victim to feelings of guilt and shame, plagued by the (false) belief that I shouldn’t be depressed when there’s so many things to be grateful for. This negative thought process can worsen depression and even stop us from seeking help under the (again, false) belief that we don’t deserve it.

It is so, so important to remember that depression is not a choice – it is a mental illness that can affect anyone regardless of privilege. 

Your emotions are 100% valid. Your privileges don’t negate your struggles. Gratitude won’t cure your depression – but hopefully it can provide you with a sparkle of comfort on the days you feel like giving up.

Any other things to be grateful for? Please leave them in the comments below.

I am a mental health blogger sharing my experiences with BPD, depression and anxiety. I have created this space of understanding and healing in order to reduce the stigma surrounding mental health. I also offer lots of self-care tips to help you live your best life! Any advice I give is based off my personal experiences and should not be substituted for medical advice. You can read my full disclaimer by clicking the link in the footer.

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