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During uncertain times it’s easy to give in to negative feelings and emotions. One of the ways to prevent this from happening and stay grounded and grateful for what you have is to use gratitude affirmations and these gratitude journaling prompts every day.
Why keep a gratitude journal?
Keeping a daily gratitude journal continuously elevates your emotional state which contributes to your good health and releases happiness hormones. By feeling genuinely grateful every day you will gradually transform your life for the better and start enjoying it more.
Various studies show that gratitude takes a huge part in neuroplasticity, which is the ability of our brain to adapt and change itself. Writing in your gratitude journal long-term improves your mental health, makes you appreciate what you have, and releases stress that you accumulated over time.
How to start daily gratitude journaling
The easiest way to start your daily gratitude journaling practice is by using gratitude writing prompts. You can buy a dedicated gratitude journal with prompts and fill it in every day, or pick up an inspiring blank journal and choose one or two journal prompts for gratitude from this list per day to write about.
Set a specific time during the day for your gratitude practice. Many people prefer making gratitude a part of their morning routine and therefore look for morning gratitude journal prompts. Others, myself included, feel more natural reflecting before bed on all the good things that happened during the day.
Some journals may only take a minute of your time, others will require a bit longer reflection twice a day. Choosing an empty journal gives you the flexibility to not be limited in space or time but it requires you to come up with your own topics for gratitude writing.
I currently use a blank journal and either write a bunch of things I’m grateful for today or use some prompts from this list. But I’m considering picking up one of the prompted gratitude journals in the future to make this process an easy everyday habit!
Now, if you came here to find daily gratitude journal prompts, here you go!
25 Incredible Gratitude Journaling Prompts
1. What am I grateful for today?
This is one of the obvious ideas for a gratitude journal but I couldn’t skip it as it’s the most important one. Whenever you are short on time or aren’t in the mood for long self-reflections, just ask yourself this question and write down everything that comes to your mind.
One day it can be only 3 things you can find to be thankful for, and it’s okay. On a better day, you might write 20 or 50 things, if you feel particularly happy and your heart is filled with gratitude. Sometimes you’ll find yourself writing in detail about one thing you are grateful for today, describing why it is important to you and listing every way in which this one thing makes you happy.
Don’t limit yourself with this kind of gratitude journal questions! Let your thoughts out on paper. It will get easier and more natural as soon as you make it a daily habit.
2. How does it feel when I’m filled with gratitude?
Do you feel your heart getting wider? Your body filled with light or positive energy? Just a warm sensation somewhere?
Start by thinking about something you have that you are always thankful for. It may be your partner, your health, your beautiful children, or your cozy home. Then close your eyes for a moment and put your attention inside: listen to your body and try to find how the feeling of gratitude expresses itself. Write down all your findings!
3. How can I express gratitude better?
This is a good question that can also be included in the list of gratitude writing prompts for students or kids. Is there a way you can show your gratitude to someone? Is there someone who is always kind to you and deserves a nice grateful gesture? What can you do to make someone smile today?
4. What is the most precious thing in my life?
Oooh, that’s a deep example of daily journal prompts. For someone it may be an easy question, others might need a minute to figure this out. Usually, we already know the answer but don’t always acknowledge it.
What is one thing you are most grateful for in your life? For me, it’s my husband. For you, it may be your parent, your friends, your dog, or your healthy body. Bill Gates would probably say it’s his brain.
Maybe for you, it’s You! Do you give yourself enough credit and appreciate yourself as you deserve? Do you celebrate small wins and admire yourself as you would a friend who achieved the same things?
5. Who has been kind to me recently?
Gratitude journaling may push you to express your gratitude more but its main idea is about feeling it. The more you acknowledge all the good that happens for you, the more of it happens!
Go back into the nearest past and look for every case of kindness directed at you. Maybe it was a nice person in a line or a heartwarming comment from a stranger on social media. Maybe your relative said or did something that made you happy? Or a friend was there for you when you needed it and it made your heart full of love?
6. What is the best thing that happened today?
Sometimes I don’t even think of it as gratitude journaling but more like a bunch of positive journal prompts (I also have some specific positivity-related prompts you might like!).
You don’t have to force gratitude if you don’t feel it at the moment. In one way or another, your gratefulness journal will naturally make you feel thankful as you start thinking about things you enjoyed.
So, instead of listing 3 things you are grateful for, list 3 good things that happened today instead. It may be as simple as a warm hug or a good cup of coffee. Look back at your day and notice all the little and big things that made you smile today. Write them down and you’ll naturally feel grateful for them in the process!
7. Who am I especially grateful to have in my life?
Everyone’s gratitude journal entries on this topic will be different. Now we are thinking about people in your life but don’t be quick to skip this one if you are a lone wolf.
Common answers will of course be a partner, a child, a parent, or a friend. But there are also people whom you crossed paths with in the past in order to learn some important lesson. Or book authors or public speakers who taught you something about life. They aren’t necessarily IN your life but they made an impact on it, and this is definitely something to be grateful for.
8. Is there something I’m always taking for granted?
Think oxygen, for example. It’s not something that first comes to your mind when you are listing things you are grateful for. Ironically, it’s something you wouldn’t be alive without.
Most of the things you actively appreciate are just that: things. You would totally survive without a TV or even a Ferrari. But without lungs or brainpower? No way. Think deeper and write down a few things you never thanked before that keep you alive and well! You can use my list of 100 things to be grateful for to find some fresh perspective if you feel stuck.
9. When was my latest random act of kindness?
If someone is kind to you, you don’t have to respond in the same way. You can pay it forward in any other way to express your gratitude to the universe.
If this concept is new for you and you don’t know where to start, use a kindness ideas list like this one to get inspiration from. You’ll surely find there something you can do for someone you know!
If you had a random act of kindness recently, reflect on how it made you feel, how it was received and how that person seemed to feel. Brainstorm ideas on how you can make someone else’s life better!
10. Which parts of my body I don’t appreciate enough?
What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you apply gratitude to your own body? Typically, it’s your eyes and other senses, your hair, maybe your heart and brain, and then your arms and legs. Am I right? Let me know in the comments which body part was your first one to appreciate!
Try to see the whole picture! Think about the parts you never think about. Probably that’s because they never bother you, which is another great reason to be thankful for.
For example, be grateful for your toes that let your walk straight and for your kidneys that filter toxins from your blood!
11. I am grateful to have a friend like … because …
You can use this daily journal prompt to write about a different person every day, or be grateful for the same friend but come up with a different reason every time. Be creative and think about all the fun memories and crazy moments you experienced together!
Who is always there for you? Who are you always there for? Appreciate your friends, as they aren’t easy to find, especially when you are an adult.
12. Who was my most impactful teacher?
Is there a particular teacher you remember from your school years with warmth? Is there someone who always believed in you, and encouraged you to be a better version of yourself? Or maybe there is some famous figure whose example impacted your adult years and decisions?
Give yourself a minute to think about who you are today and who deserves kudos for making it happen.
13. Write your 3 affirmations for today.
If you aren’t struggling with anything in particular right now, I recommend starting with happiness affirmations, positive Monday statements to set your intention for the whole week, or some productivity affirmations to get excited about your projects.
Choose 3 affirmations that speak to you right now and repeat them a few times during the day to stay in a positive vibe!
14. I am grateful for … that is on its way to me.
Are you manifesting something special in your life and can’t wait for it to happen? Maybe it’s a new job, a new relationship, a business success, or your dream house?
Don’t wait until it comes into your life to become grateful. Be grateful for it now, become a vibrational match for it, feel like someone who owns it already, and it will come to you much faster!
15. Is there a far away friend I can surprise with a present?
One common way to express gratitude is with gifts. But my favorite presents are the unexpected ones! Not the ones you give for Christmas or someone’s birthday, but the ones you surprise people with out of the blue.
I mean, wouldn’t you enjoy being randomly surprised with a gift from someone who cares about you?
Is there anyone in particular who came to your mind right now?
It doesn’t have to be an appreciation gift for anything they do but a simple genuine sign of your love.
For example, if you have a remote friend who you haven’t seen in a while, I have a ton of ideas for heartwarming gifts they would love to receive!
16. Write an A to Z list of things you are grateful for.
Once in a while, you can make your gratitude practice into a fun game by filling a whole alphabet of things you are grateful for! Write all the letters from A to Z in a column and find something that deserves your gratitude for each letter. For example, you might write Chocolate or Creativity for ‘C’ and Smartphone or Sunshine for ‘S’. Are you up for a challenge?
By the way, what does this exercise make you feel? Excited? Scared? Overwhelmed? Intrigued? Write your feelings down and reflect on why you feel like this: make it another one of your positive journal prompts!
If you need gratitude journal examples for this prompt, I have created my own A to Z gratitude list you can steal ideas from!
17. What is the last goal I achieved? Who has supported me in the process?
What was your latest win?
If you can’t think of anything right away, you definitely need to start a daily gratitude practice and celebrate the little things that happen in your life.
When you come up with something, thank yourself for all the effort you’ve put into achieving this. Feel grateful for it happening and giving you a new reason to be proud of yourself! Acknowledge everyone who helped you in the process or just was there for you when you didn’t feel very confident!
18. What amazing gifts have I received for my last birthday?
We usually receive a gift, say thank you, get excited about it for a little while, and then quickly get used to having it.
Look back at your last birthday or any big event that involved gifts and try to remember who gave you what! Send a mental wave of love and gratitude to every person who put their soul into choosing a perfect gift for you, even if it was last year!
19. What can I do today to make a better tomorrow?
This is probably one of my favorite daily gratitude prompts for adults! It makes you reflect on your current life, realize which areas ask for improvement, and figure out the next steps you can make.
It doesn’t have to be big and overwhelming! Maybe it’s a habit that you know will change your life for the better. Or a task that you’ve been postponing for way too long that stresses you out. Maybe you should just do it!
But whatever it is, don’t decide to start it tomorrow. Start today, so tomorrow you already have a good habit you’ll continue building or will be one step closer to your dream life!
20. Which character traits of my partner I’m most thankful for?
I think I’ve seen this question in one of the gratitude journals with prompts I reviewed, and I loved it!
List all the nice qualities your life partner has that make you feel happy to be in this relationship. When you are out of ideas, think about the bad qualities other people possess that your partner doesn’t, and feel grateful for it too!
But try to write it down in a positive way. So instead of “he isn’t egoistic”, write “he always cares about me and thinks about my needs”. This will make you feel more grateful and won’t get mixed with negative feelings you might feel toward someone else. Hope you get the idea!
21. Name the last time you witnessed an act of kindness.
We talked about your own random acts of kindness before, now let’s look at other people’s input.
Have you recently witnessed a kind gesture from your family member or a stranger? Write it down and reflect on how it makes you feel!
I also recommend following some positive accounts like @globalpositivenews on Insta to get a daily dose of gratefulness. They share random acts of kindness that happen in the world all the time! Your mental health will surely benefit if you read this kind of news instead of traditional negative news.
Need more ideas for your gratitude journal? Buy a prompted journal with daily questions!
22. How can I express gratitude to my family members?
One of the good grateful journal prompts you can use regularly is this: how can I show more gratitude to the people I love?
Give more compliments, spend more time together, make pleasant surprises, and hand out little gifts now and then. If they make you happy in any way, they deserve your gratitude and hearing how amazing they are!
23. Which features in my appearance do I appreciate the most?
Among all the other gratitude journaling ideas that make you feel grateful for the external things, it’s important to look inside too.
Write it down and feel thankful for having it and looking like that!
24. What is one positive experience I will never forget?
This is one of the interesting positive prompts that make you feel grateful but aren’t for daily use.
You may think about it once a year and compare your answer with the one from a previous year. Do you name the same event? Or maybe something memorable happened this year too?
This gratitude prompt will make you look back at the whole year and bring all the good memories to the surface. It may not feel like it straight away, but the more you think about it, the more things and events you find that are worth being thankful for!
25. Write 100 things you are grateful for.
If A to Z alphabet from idea #16 felt challenging, what would you say if I invite you to make a list of 100 things you are grateful for?
Some gratitude journal ideas may feel insanely hard, and I felt like that too once!
But I managed to create my list of 100 things I’m grateful for, and I assure you, it’s not that hard. In fact, the more thought you put into it, the more ideas will come to your mind, and it’ll be hard to stop at 100!
If you attempt to write a list like that, I guarantee you’ll be amazed by how many things you have in your life to be thankful for. When you finish, please let me know in the comments if I was right!
More journaling prompts for happier life
These are my 25 gratitude journaling prompts that should help you feel more grateful and grounded, even in the most challenging times. There is always a lot to be grateful for, and focusing on finding it will take you farther in life than being stuck in the lack mindset.
Thank you for reading my blog, I truly appreciate it and hope it helps you be grateful!