85 best gratitude quotes and thankful sayings (+images)

231 Shares

Last Updated on October 10, 2020

The systematic study of gratitude within psychology began only around the year 2000. Earlier, psychology had been more concerned with understanding negative emotions than the positive ones. However, since the beginning of positive psychology, gratitude has been in the mainstream of psychological research.

Studies indicate that if we consciously work on the ability to be grateful, our well-being, satisfaction, and thus our happiness increases (1)

gratitude quotes

To cultivate this powerful habit I've curated for you the 85 best gratitude quotes and thankful sayings. I've grouped them in different categories like appreciation, prayer, thankfulness, virtue, life, giving, hope, attitude, happiness, Thanksgiving, health, joy, mothership, duty, heart, and soal.


Appreciation

Conscious awareness and recognition can create a feeling of satisfaction. Mindfulness is the basis for this: awareness is focused on the present moment, with a conscious focus on the positive no matter how little or insignificant it seems.

appreciation quote

“Nature's beauty is a gift that cultivates appreciation and gratitude.”
Louie Schwartzberg

“As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.”
John F. Kennedy

“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

'Feeling grateful to or appreciative of someone or something in your life actually attracts more of the things that you appreciate and value into your life.'
Christiane Northrup, M.D.
Click To Tweet

“Reflect upon your present blessings – of which every man has many – not on your past misfortunes, of which all men have some.”
Charles Dickens

“Give yourself a gift of five minutes of contemplation in awe of everything you see around you. Go outside and turn your attention to the many miracles around you. This five-minute-a-day regimen of appreciation and gratitude will help you to focus your life in awe.”
Wayne Dyer


Prayer

Research shows that people who pray seem to be healthier and happier than others. (2) Those who pray are usually not interested in these studies. For them, the conversation with God is simply part of their life.

In prayer, a person reflects on his personal relationship with God. He talks with God about the things that he perceives and experiences: his joy and gratitude, his hopes and desires and his suffering.

prayer gratitude quote

“One single grateful thought raised to heaven is the most perfect prayer.”
G. E. Lessing

“Faith and prayer are the vitamins of the soul; man cannot live in health without them.”
Mahalia Jackson

“Never forget the three powerful resources you always have available to you: love, prayer, and forgiveness.”
Jackson Brown, Jr.

'Thank you' is the best prayer that anyone could say. I say that one a lot. Thank you expresses extreme gratitude, humility, understanding.' Alice WalkerClick To Tweet

“If the only prayer you said in your whole life was, “thank you,” that would suffice.”
Meister Eckhart


Thankfulness

Here are some thoughts and quotes about being thankful that will further boost your happiness and success.

thankful quotes

“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

“We should all be thankful for those people who rekindle the inner spirit.”
Albert Schweitzer

“Gratitude is our most direct line to God and the angels. If we take the time, no matter how crazy and troubled we feel, we can find something to be thankful for.”
Terry Lynn Taylor

'Often people ask how I manage to be happy despite having no arms and no legs. The quick answer is that I have a choice. I can be angry about not having limbs, or I can be thankful that I have a purpose. I chose gratitude.' Nick VujicicClick To Tweet

If every moment is sacred, and If you are amazed and in awe most of the time when you find yourself breathing and not crazy, then you are in a state of constant thankfulness, worship, and humility.”
Bernice Johnson Reagon


Virtue

The following words of gratitude emphasize that we should teach our children this important virtue too.

virtue quote

“Feeling gratitude isn't born in us – it's something we are taught and in turn, we teach our children.”
Joyce Brothers

“Forgiveness is a virtue of the brave.”
Indira Gandhi

“Sometimes we need to remind ourselves that thankfulness is indeed a virtue.”
William Bennett

'Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues but the parent of all the others.' Marcus Tullius CiceroClick To Tweet

“A man's indebtedness is not a virtue; his repayment is. Virtue begins when he dedicates himself actively to the job of gratitude.”
Ruth Benedict


Life

Each one of us can surely find a whole range of reasons to be thankful. Just think of life. Who gave it to us? Where do our possibilities and abilities to live come from? And our health?

live gratitude quote

“To speak gratitude is courteous and pleasant, to enact gratitude is generous and noble, but to live gratitude is to touch Heaven.”
Johannes A. Gaertner

“It’s only with gratitude life becomes rich.”
Dietrich Bonhoeffer

“Life is such a gift, I just say thank you all day.”
Natalie Cole

'We can only be said to be alive in those moments when our hearts are conscious of our treasures.' Thornton WilderClick To Tweet

“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

Further Reading: 150 positive life quotes on love, happiness, and success.


Giving

Especially in today's materialistic world, the motto in life is often “the more, the better”… Nowadays there doesn't seem to be much room for the idea of giving. Instead, everyone pursues their own goals.

But giving is actually more blissful than taking – and it brings various advantages…There is evidence that gift-giving behaviors can create a “warm glow,”(3) activating regions in the brain associated with trust, pleasure, and connection with other people. We secrete in giving situations “positive chemicals” in our brains, such as dopamine (a feel-good chemical), serotonin (a mood-mediating chemical), and oxytocin (a bonding and compassion chemical).

giving quote

“For it is in giving that we receive.”
Francis of Assisi

Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.
William Arthur Ward

“Blessed are those that can give without remembering and receive without forgetting.”
Author Unknown

'Kind words can be short and easy to speak, but their echoes are truly endless.' Mother TheresaClick To Tweet

“Two kinds of gratitude: the sudden kind we feel for what we take; the larger kind we feel for what we give.”
Edwin Arlington Robinson

Further Reading: 130 true quotes about friendships, best friends and relationships


Hope

Hopes are directed at something we can imagine. Hope is open to the unimaginable. The opposite of hope is hopelessness and despair. You can desperately hold on to your hopes. But even in hopeless situations, hope remains open to surprise.

Surprise combines hope with gratitude. The grateful heart finds anything given surprising. Hope means being ready for a surprise.

gratitude and happiness quote

“It is impossible to feel grateful and depressed at the same time.”
Naomi Williams

“God's mercy and grace give me hope – for myself, and for our world.”
Billy Graham

“If people are good only because they fear punishment, and hope for reward, then we are a sorry lot indeed.”
Albert Einstein

'Few things in the world are more powerful than a positive push. A smile. A world of optimism and hope. A 'you can do it' when things are tough.' Richard M. DeVosClick To Tweet

“True happiness is to enjoy the present, without anxious dependence upon the future, not to amuse ourselves with either hopes or fears but to rest satisfied with what we have, which is sufficient, for he that is so wants nothing.”
Seneca


Attitude

Most people don't really reflect on their inner attitude. They only respond to external factors and thus give others control over their situation. But how you feel determines your life. And YOU should be the one who shapes your life.

To see what I'm talking about check out my post: the attitude of gratitude – 4 easy steps to unleash the power of gratefulness.

attitude of gratitude quote

“Sometimes we should express our gratitude for the small and simple things like the scent of the rain, the taste of your favorite food, or the sound of a loved one's voice.”
Joseph B. Wirthlin

“Gratitude, like love, is never a dependable international emotion.”
Joseph Alsop

“There are moments on most days when I feel deep and sincere gratitude when I sit at the open window, and there is a blue sky.”
Kathe Kollwitz

'Your attitude, not your aptitude, will determine your altitude.' Zig ZiglarClick To Tweet

“Develop an attitude of gratitude, and give thanks for everything that happens to you, knowing that every step forward is a step toward achieving something bigger and better than your current situation.”
Brian Tracy

Further Reading: 39 positive attitude quotes to stop negative thoughts


Happiness

By realizing what is good in your life and dealing with challenges in a more relaxed way, you automatically increase your level of happiness. Take 10 minutes each morning to become aware of how lucky you are. Enjoy the beautiful things! You will then start the day with a positive mood and a happy feeling.

gratitude is happiness

“I would maintain that thanks are the highest form of thought and that gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder.”
Gilbert Keith Chesterton

“Happiness is itself a kind of gratitude.”
Joseph Wood Krutch

“Be grateful for luck. Pay the thunder no mind – listen to the birds. And don't hate nobody.”
Eubie

'Social scientists have found that the fastest way to feel happiness is to practice gratitude.' Chip ConleyClick To Tweet

“Happiness cannot be traveled to, owned, earned, worn or consumed. Happiness is the spiritual experience of living every minute with love, grace, and gratitude.”
Denis Waitley

Further reading: 100 happy life quotes to unlock the key to happiness


Thanksgiving

The rituals of appreciation also include the feasts we celebrate throughout the year.

gratitude and thanksgiving quotes

 “At Thanksgiving, we should be thankful for everything in our life – even the things that may seem like challenges today. Usually, the challenges in our life lead to positive changes in our life.”
Dr. Wayne Dyer

“Not what we say about our blessings, but how we use them, is the true measure of our thanksgiving.”
W.T. Purkiser

Thanksgiving dinners take eighteen hours to prepare. They are consumed in twelve minutes. Half-times take twelve minutes. This is not a coincidence.”
Erma Bombeck

'Gratitude is the inward feeling of kindness received. Thankfulness is the natural impulse to express that feeling. Thanksgiving is the following of that impulse.' Henry Van DykeClick To Tweet

“Thanksgiving Day is a good day to recommit our energies to giving thanks and just giving.”
Amy Grant


Soul

Being thankful has a liberating effect on the soul, anger narrows it. In addition, this habit soothes the greed for new things and thus reduces the need for consumerism and the hunger for stimulation. It allows you to pause for a moment and to be content with what you have achieved. This also means a feeling of relief.

gratitude and soul quote

“Gratitude is the sign of noble souls.”
Aesop

“Flowers always make people better, happier, and more helpful; they are sunshine, food, and medicine for the soul.”
Luther Burbank

“Gratitude is the fairest blossom which springs from the soul.”
Henry Ward

'Let us be grateful to people who make us happy they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.' Marcel ProustClick To Tweet

“Put your heart, mind, and soul into even your smallest acts. This is the secret of success.”
Swami Sivananda


Health

Thankfulness can help to strengthen our health, our well-being, and our mental resilience. International research teams have found in studies that this attitude even promotes the healing of diseases. (4)

health quote

“Keeping your body healthy is an expression of gratitude to the whole cosmos – the trees, the clouds, everything.”
Thich Nhat Hanh

“My body is a reflection of how grateful I am for my life and my health; there are a lot of people less fortunate than me.”
Rutina Wesley

“I finally realized that being grateful to my body was key to giving more love to myself.”
Oprah Winfrey, O Magazine

'Yoga always helps me slow down, be present, and be grateful for my health and well-being.' Jamie AndersonClick To Tweet

“Without your health, you've got nothing going on. I thank God every day for good health. “
Ric Flair

Further Reading: 91 thought-provoking habit quotes about change


Joy

Each night before going to bed, write in a nice notebook the one thing (event) that you enjoyed during the day. It helps to use a really beautiful notebook for this and to turn it into a habit that winds up the day. Feel the joy again and also the thankfulness. If you don't have the time for a gratitude journal you might want to try my quick “happiness diet”. Read more about it at the end of this blog post.

gratitude joy quote

“Joy is the simplest form of gratitude.”
Karl Barth

“Gratitude can transform common days into thanksgivings, turn routine jobs into joy, and change ordinary opportunities into blessings.”
William Arthur Ward

 “The discipline of gratitude is the explicit effort to acknowledge that all I am and have is given to me as a gift of love, a gift to be celebrated with joy.”
Henri Nouwen

'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 CaddyClick To Tweet

 “Whether there is another life or not, if there is any being who gave me this, I shall thank him from the bottom of my heart, because, upon the whole, my life has been a joy.”
Robert Green Ingersoll

How to practice gratitude with a journal for beginners


Mother

I have also put together a few “thank you mom” quotes to help you express your appreciation to her, whether it’s cute, heartfelt, inspiring or funny, any words from you are sure to melt your mother’s heart.

mother quote

“God could not be everywhere, so he created mothers.
Jewish Proverb

All that I am, or hope to be, I owe to my angel mother.
Abraham Lincoln

Mother's Day is in honor of the best mother who ever lived – The mother of your heart.
Anna Jarvis

A mother is a person who seeing there are only four pieces of pie for five people, promptly announces she never did care for pie. Tenneva JordanClick To Tweet

No man succeeds without a good woman behind him. Wife or mother, if it is both, he is twice blessed indeed.
Godfrey Winn

Further reading: 78 inspirational love quotes for her and him


Heart

A Californian study revealed that the more often heart patients were grateful for the positive things in their lives, the healthier they were. (5)

heart gratitude quote

“Gratitude is the memory of the heart.”
Saint Mary Euphrasia (Rose Virginie Pelletier)

There shall be eternal summer in the grateful heart.”
Celia Thaxter

“Gratitude is born in hearts that take time to count up past mercies.”
Charles E. Jefferson

'Gratitude is when memory is stored in the heart and not in the mind.' Lionel HamptonClick To Tweet

“In all the affairs of life, social as well as political, courtesies of a small and trivial character are the ones which strike deepest to the grateful and appreciating heart.”
Henry Clay

Further Reading: 57 best self-love quotes on self-acceptance


Challenges

We cannot be grateful for all the difficult situations and circumstances in life, but we can be glad for the opportunities they offer us. The chance to learn, to grow, to experience ourselves as sensitive or strong, to perceive life as something precious.

challenge quote

“Gratitude doesn't change the scenery. It merely washes clean the glass you look through so you can clearly see the colors.”
Richelle E. Goodrich

“I am grateful for all my problems. After each one was overcome, I became stronger and more able to meet those that were still to come. I grew in all my difficulties.”
C. Penny

“Be grateful for all the obstacles in your life. They have strengthened you as you continue with your journey.”
Anonymous

'We can always find something to be thankful for, and there may be reasons why we ought to be thankful for even those dispensations which appear dark and frowning.' Albert BarnesClick To Tweet

“I've never had a problem with age; my feelings and emotions are still like those of a young woman. Thank God, I can still be surprised and excited, and I can still dream. I think that's something no one should stop doing because it's what keeps you young!”
Maria Conchita Alonso

Click through to grab the book on Amazon!


Duty

From the moment we are born to the moment we will leave this earth, we are products of a constant flow of experiences that awaken different emotions in us. In this context the most necessary duty is gratitude.

returning thanks quote

“No duty is more urgent than that of returning thanks.”
James Allen

“To the generous mind, the heaviest debt is that of gratitude when it is not in our power to repay it.”
Benjamin Franklin

“When a person doesn't have gratitude, something is missing in his or her humanity.”
Ellie Wiesel

'Gratitude is a duty which ought to be paid, but which none have a right to expect.' Jean-Jacques RousseauClick To Tweet

“The worst moment for an atheist is when he feels grateful and has no one to thank.”
Wendy Ward


Thank you!

Still reading? First of all, let me thank you for your time to read this post. It would be wonderful if these gratitude quotes could inspire you to practice a “happiness diet” in the morning and evening.

thank you notes

It's super easy. You just get up every morning with a smile and say thank you to God or yourself at the end of the day. It requires no effort and no restriction but provides you with the necessary “nutrients” to feel better every moment.

Take gratefulness to the next level!

Did you know that I've curated the best inspirational quotes in an eye-catching book. If you love the combination of thought-provoking quotes and colorful images then this book is for you.

Click through!

231 Shares

Leave a Comment