How to Set Up a Virtual Gratitude Jar: Step-By-Step


Most people would like to feel happier on a more consistent basis. Fortunately, achieving this goal may be easier than we realize. Adopting certain daily practices and overall attitudes can significantly influence your feelings of satisfaction and contentment in life.

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It’s common knowledge that expressing gratitude can boost a person’s happiness. Happiness isn’t necessarily the result of acquiring more possessions, experiences, and other things to be grateful for. In fact, it’s the other way around: we tend to be happier when we can be grateful for what we already have.

There are many ways to express gratitude throughout your life. One is to create a gratitude jar, which does not need to be a physical object. You can create a virtual gratitude jar, which some may find more convenient.

Keep reading if this idea appeals to you. This guide will explain a virtual gratitude jar and how you can set one up.

What Is a Virtual Gratitude Jar or Board?

A gratitude jar is (as the name implies) a jar where you can deposit pictures, items, or written messages representing the aspects of your life you’re already grateful for. A gratitude jar might contain pictures of loved ones, notes describing what you’re grateful for on a given day, etc. A similar item would be a gratitude board, which replaces the jar with a poster or other type of board you can display in your home.

A virtual gratitude jar serves the same purpose as a physical one. Naturally, the only difference is that this type of gratitude “jar” is digital.

You might want to create a virtual gratitude jar instead of a traditional one for many reasons. Maybe you find it easier to quickly add items to a virtual gratitude jar. Perhaps you travel often and would like to be able to access your gratitude jar whenever you please. Regardless, the following tips will help you better understand how you may go about creating one.

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Apps or Programs That Can Help You Set Up a Virtual Gratitude Jar

There are many apps and programs to choose from when setting up a virtual gratitude jar. These are merely some noteworthy examples to keep in mind:

Basic photo or slideshow app

Odds are, you already have an app on your phone and computer that allows you to save images, create albums, and even put together a basic slideshow. For some, this type of program may be all that’s necessary to create a virtual gratitude jar that satisfies your tastes. This program may not allow you to add custom features to your virtual gratitude jar, but it will enable you to easily add images that represent all that you’re grateful for.


You might not use Canva to create your virtual gratitude jar, but this graphic design app for beginners can help you customize the images you plan to add to your gratitude jar or board. For instance, with Canva, you can take a picture of something you’re grateful for and add text (such as an inspirational quote) and graphics to enhance its meaning.

The Gratitude Jar

For some people, a virtual gratitude jar or board is a personal item they don’t wish others to see. However, not everyone feels this way. Some prefer to share what they’re grateful for publicly. 

The Gratitude Jar may appeal to such people. It’s simply a website through which users share messages about what they’re grateful for. Some individuals find staying committed to regularly updating a gratitude jar is easier when there’s a social element to the process.

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Social media

Don’t overlook the potential usefulness of social media when creating a virtual gratitude jar. Depending on your social media platforms, you could leverage your social media accounts to create a digital gratitude jar that you can share with others.

On Facebook, you could create an album of photos and images that highlights all you’re grateful for in life. Or you could create an entire Instagram account highlighting what you appreciate in life. Similarly, you could create a Twitter account with which you Tweet messages about what you are grateful for each day. 

If you wanted to take this concept a step further, you might even create a YouTube page or podcast through which you regularly publish episodes describing what you are grateful for.

Day One Journal

Apple once recognized the Day One Journal as “App of the Year.” Thus, it’s a safe bet you’ll find it helpful.

The purpose of Day One Journal is to help users cultivate positive habits and attitudes that can improve their well-being. An attitude of gratitude is just one trait this app may help you develop.

Day One Journal is an ideal app for creating a virtual gratitude jar for several reasons. It offers basic features you would look for in a virtual gratitude jar app, such as the option to save photos and related files. Additionally, it serves as a digital gratitude journal, allowing you to elaborate on why you’re grateful for specific experiences and other aspects of your life. The app even has practical uses, such as letting you set up reminders for important appointments.

Day One Journal is also helpful because it’s a mobile app. That means you can return to your virtual gratitude jar whenever you’d like, as long as you have your smartphone.

That’s an important point. You may not be taking full advantage of the benefits a virtual gratitude jar can offer if you’re merely adding items to it. While this is an important step, it’s also wise to review the items already in your gratitude jar from time to time. Doing so can remind you that you have much to be grateful for now.

Steps for Setting Up an Online Virtual Gratitude Jar

The specific way you set up a virtual gratitude jar can depend slightly on your preferences, the app or program you use, etc. In general, though, following these steps will simplify the process.

Step 1: Come up with ideas for items to include in a gratitude jar

Many find it’s easier to stay committed to a virtual gratitude jar project if they start by adding a fair number of items to the jar from the start. If your gratitude jar is already somewhat “built-up” early on in your project, you may have more motivation to continue growing it.

Start your project by making a list of the different types of items you may include in a virtual gratitude jar. Some basic ideas to consider include (but are not limited to) the following:

  • Pictures of loved ones
  • Pictures of vacations you’ve taken
  • Images featuring quotes about gratitude
  • Images or files featuring written descriptions of what you are grateful for
  • One- or two-word “messages” representing general aspects of your life for which you are grateful (such as “health” or “love”)

Keep in mind that you’ll want to list these out in a way that’s more specific to your life. For example, when listing ideas of items to include in your virtual gratitude jar, don’t just list “photos of loved ones.” Name the specific loved ones you’ll include photos of. You might even describe the specific photos you’re going to use, such as a photo of you and your spouse on your wedding day, or a photo of you and your friends during a birthday celebration.

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Step 2: Gather your items

The next step is to gather some of the items you will include in your virtual gratitude jar. Creating a folder on your computer may help you stay more organized. 

Browse your current photo collection to find pictures you want to include in your gratitude jar. You might also wish to search online for images that represent what you’re grateful for.

Depending on what you want to focus on with your virtual gratitude jar, you may even decide to take screenshots of specific images to add to your folder. For instance, maybe you are doing well financially and want to acknowledge this in your gratitude jar. If so, you could take a screenshot of your mobile banking app displaying your current balance.

Step 3: Create additional items

This is a step not everyone will need to follow. However, some may find it helps them make their gratitude jars feel complete.

Perhaps you want to create images over which you add inspirational quotes, descriptions of what you are grateful for, or other text-based elements. You may need to make these yourself if you can’t find what you are looking for online. Again, a program such as Canva can help you with this process.

Step 4: Decide how many virtual gratitude jars you wish to create

It’s worth noting that you don’t need to create just one gratitude jar. Some people find it easier to focus on this type of project when making multiple gratitude jars with unique themes.

For instance, one gratitude jar could focus on your relationships, while another could highlight travel or other experiences for which you are grateful. Before moving to the next step, decide whether you’d prefer to create a single gratitude jar or whether you’d like to make several.

If you decide to create more than one gratitude jar, consider breaking up your folder of items into subfolders for each jar. This is another way to remain more organized.

Step 5: Experiment with apps and programs

You might already feel thoroughly confident in your choice of app, program, or platform which you will use to create your virtual gratitude jar. Feel free to start building the jar up if you genuinely feel this way.

If you don’t, start small by experimenting with a few different apps and platforms. You’ll eventually find one that works best for you.

Once you’ve chosen a program and added some items to your virtual gratitude jar, the next step is simple: keep building it. That’s important to remember. A gratitude jar shouldn’t be something you add a few items to once and then ignore. A virtual gratitude jar will help you cultivate an attitude of gratitude if you add items to it regularly. Remember, doing so will likely have a genuine (and very positive) impact on your overall happiness in the long run.

Virtual Gratitude Jars: A Convenient Way to Be More Grateful

Creating a virtual gratitude jar is an easy task that can yield significant results. To learn more about similar topics, check our guide on books about gratitude.


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