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A Gratitude List

paula rizzo © Steve Credoby Paula Rizzo

Have you ever started to feel sorry for yourself and gotten in a real funk? That happened to me this week and it’s so unlike me. I’m not an unhappy person! I’m usually very upbeat and spunky. I put other people in a good mood. So when I found myself slipping into a foul mood I stopped myself immediately. What’s my problem? I have so much to be grateful for!

1. My job: Recently, I had a wonderful shoot at the New York Botanical Garden in the Bronx with the Medicine Hunter, Chris Kilham. Chris travels all over the world looking for medicinal plants and medicines.  I joked with him that being in the Garden with him was the closest I’d get to going to the Amazon with him. I’ve worked with Chris for nearly four years at Fox News and have featured him as a fellow list maker.

Medicine Hunter shoot days are my absolute favorite. They are fun, informative and don’t feel like work at all. Tomorrow we are shooting more segments — one at a chocolate factory in Brooklyn and another testing out some strange foods in the East Village. It will be a fun day! Something to look forward to.

2. My hubby: Jay is the cutest — he knew I wasn’t feeling myself today and so when he got home for work he gave me a hug that lasted about two minutes.  So sweet.  He knows how much I love hugs so it was extra special.

3. My mom: You know how you can always count on one person to make you feel better no matter what? Well that’s my mom. She didn’t even need to say anything spectacular or profound — just talking to her makes me feel better. Everyone should have someone who does this for him or her.

4. Dark chocolate: I came home and ate a square of dark chocolate to boost my mood. It really helped! I highly recommend it. I learned this trick from the Medicine Hunter.

5. Oprah: I watched two episodes of “Oprah: Behind the Scenes.” It’s my guilty little pleasure. As a die-hard Oprah fan and as a producer it’s the perfect blend of some of the things I love. Giving myself a little downtime to catch up on episodes was just what I needed to clear my head. By the way — I think Oprah keeps a gratitude journal. Smart lady.

6. Sleepytime tea: I’ve said it a zillion times — I only drink three beverages. Wine, water and tea.  Drinking this tea tonight with a blend of chamomile, spearmint and lemongrass — really helped to relax me and help me get over my bad mood. You should try it!

7. A Good Book: I’m reading “The Lost Symbol” by Dan Brown and I love to steal any minute I can to catch up with the characters. I read a study last week that when you’re feeling alone you should pick up a good book. Reading about the characters and sharing in their experiences will help you feel comforted. It’s very easy to get lost in Dan Brown’s world. A good remedy indeed.

Some of these examples are a bit tongue in cheek but it’s important to step back and think about what you’re grateful for every once in a while. If you need some inspiration — I recommend two books to help you realize the little things that will make you smile daily. They are are “The Book of Awesome” and “The Book of Even More Awesome” by Neil Pasricha.

What are you grateful for?

Paula Rizzo is a senior television producer in New York City and founder of  She’s an Emmy Award winner and attributes much of her success to her compulsive list making.  She makes lists for everything and started to help others become more organized, focused and efficient, while being less stressed.  Follow her on Twitter and connect on Facebook