How to Feel Grateful When Life Feels Hard


Raise your hand if this year was one of your hardest. 

Our hands are up, too!

Whether it was the extra stress about work, childcare, staying well, or … you name it, we’ve all had to carry a big load on our shoulders this year. 

And when life gets overwhelming, it’s hard to find things to feel grateful about. You might be too exhausted to even think about gratitude.  

So if you’re not in the mood to feel especially grateful this year, that’s completely OK. You have our permission to keep your gratitude journal stashed in your drawer for the rest of 2021.

But if you’re up for it, we encourage you to incorporate gratitude into your day, even if you’re not so thrilled about the idea.

Because when you let just a little gratitude into your life, good things happen. You can boost your mood, improve your sleep, and prevent stress and burnout. And all of those positive things can turn around a particularly tough year.

So here’s how to feel grateful, even during challenging times:

  1. Think basic. Are you grateful for your family? Your morning coffee? Your evening run? You don’t need a long list, and the things don’t have to be elaborate or deep (save those feelings of gratitude for another time). 
  1. Practice gratitude during your daily tasks. If you zone out while you walk your dog or fold laundry, why not use that time to think of the things you’re grateful for? This way, it won’t feel like one extra thing on your plate.
  1. Pass along some good vibes. When you grab your coffee from the barista behind the counter, say a “thank you,” rather than just grabbing and going (you could even give a compliment, too). You’ll lift their mood, and maybe yours, too.

There’s a lot of pressure to give thanks this time of year — so much so that you might feel like just opting out. But if you can incorporate just a little gratitude into your life, we promise it will be worth it.

Here’s to giving thanks (and did we mention we’re thankful for you?). We are! 

Emily and the EveryDay Happy Team


P.S. Feel like you need a gratitude reboot? Try our five-day Gratitude Challenge! The best part:  It’s free!  


Quote du jour

“Enjoy the little things, for one day you may look back and realize they were the big things.” — Robert Brault


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