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Soufra – Improving the Lives of Palestinian Refugees One Bite at a Time

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Movie Reviews
Soufra – Improving the Lives of Palestinian Refugees One Bite at a Time

 

South of Beirut, Lebanon is a 68 year old refugee camp housing refugees from Palestine, Syria and Iraq. Many have lived in this camp their entire lives– Mariam AlShaar is one of them. Now, Mariam has pulled the women of this camp together to do what has never been done before. They started with a small kitchen from a micro-loan. With nearly insurmountable political odds against them– they look to start the first refugee food truck. Their journey is one of many ups and downs but it is the community that is built, their sense of hope and how they see themselves that makes this a moving, touching film about their journey. Mariam has been known as ‘the crazy lady’ and now she will show just how crazy she is. KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Ella L, comments, “. I felt so connected with the women in this film and was really intrigued by their stories, as well as what they have to say. This is an incredible film in so many ways.” Kimberly M., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror adds, “This documentary is about one woman’s quest to start a food-truck business in the refugee camp where she resides, in Lebanon. Mariam Shaar, with her adept business sense and entrepreneurial spirit sets out to improve the quality of life for herself and those around her.” See their full reviews below.

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Soufra

By Ella L., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 14

Link to video review https://youtu.be/UGhkxMsSlo8

 

Soufra is a fantastic film filled with delicious-looking food and inspiring messages for women and others. This documentary is clearly made with passion, purpose and heart. It is a little heart wrenching, but still fun and interesting at the same time. The production values are high, particularly the cinematography. I felt so connected with the women in this film and was really intrigued by their stories, as well as what they have to say. This is an incredible film in so many ways.

 

The filmmaker follows a group of women in a Lebanese refugee camp who enjoy and have a passion for cooking. They are hired by a fellow refugee, named Mariam, to start a catering company called Soufra. The film documents the struggles of these women being unable to purchase a food truck for their business. Even though they raise the money to purchase it, thanks to a Kickstarter campaign, it is still difficult for them to get the proper permits to own the truck, due to local laws.

 

What really intrigued me initially was the beginning scene in the kitchen. It is so lively, entertaining and captivating. The introduction to a film is so important. The rest of the film is equally well shot. The camera quality is clear and the cinematography is pretty spot on. This film really is quite entertaining and educating at the same time. I thoroughly enjoyed watching it because every aspect is so incredible.

 

The messages the film promotes are completely pure and positive. These women deal with really tough situations and lead extremely tough lives. However, they manage to stay strong and powerful regardless. The message is about never giving up or quitting, even when it feels like the entire world is telling you to. Never lose sight of your goals. I recommend this for ages 10 to 18, as well as adults and give it 5 out of 5 stars. I am so impressed with the women in this film and everything they have accomplished. I admire them all very much. This is a film that is truly incredible and one I will remember for years to come.

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Soufra

By Kimberly M., KIDS FIRST! Adult Juror

https://youtu.be/0zkr43diydQ

 

This documentary is about one woman’s quest to start a food-truck business in the refugee camp where she resides, in Lebanon. The quality of life for the camp’s residents is quite low, with many people living in very condensed dwellings. Mariam Shaar, with her adept business sense and entrepreneurial spirit sets out to improve the quality of life for herself and those around her. She, along with other women, cook high quality Mediterranean food and through a Kickstarter Campaign, raise and exceed the amount of funds needed to buy a van and get the permit for the business. Not surprisingly, things do not go as planned. Mariam’s lawyer tells her there may be hurdles in terms of getting the permit and obtaining a truck because she resides in the refugee camp and because of her ethnicity. Therefore, when she goes to the automobile dealer, she is turned down. Inevitably, a few months later, she is turned down for the license to operate Soufra also. She feels defeated at this point, but her lawyer explains a way in which she can circumvent these laws regarding license, location and ethnicity Mariam can find a brick and mortar place as a legitimate residential location for her business on the outskirts of Beirut. She does in fact find a place and is then granted a license. The van approval for her food truck comes smoothly after that. Her dream of a food truck business is then realized. I enjoyed watching this documentary mainly because it has a happy ending. Many documentaries seem to end on a desolate note. In addition, people residing in the West think about the Mid-East as being repressive towards women, in general. This documentary counters this thought process. We see Mariam as a determined businesswoman making lots of decisions and meeting with others on her own to get the business up and running. As the director of a Foundation stated, she would “get this going with or without financial help.” I give this documentary 4.5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 10 to 18 as well as adults. This film is being shown at select theaters throughout the country. To find a screening near you, visit https://www.soufrafilm.com/

Searching – Unique Storyline, Well Executed, Unexpected Twists

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Movie Reviews
Searching – Unique Storyline, Well Executed, Unexpected Twists
After David Kim (John Cho)’s 16-year-old daughter goes missing, a local investigation is
opened and a detective is assigned to the case. But 37 hours later and without a single lead,
David decides to search the one place no one has looked yet, where all secrets are kept
today: his daughter’s laptop. In a hyper-modern thriller told via the technology devices we
use every day to communicate, David must trace his daughter’s digital footprints before she

disappears forever. KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Alejandra G. comments, “This new drama/ thriller grabbed

my attention since the beginning, because of its amazing and unique storyline. I felt
thrilled to discover what would happen at the end and, whether or not the outcome would be
what I expected.” See her full comments below.
Searching
By Alejandra G., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 16
https://youtu.be/EMnBlXtGmS8
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This new drama/thriller grabbed my attention since the beginning, because of its amazing and
unique storyline. I felt thrilled to discover what would happen at the end and, whether or not the
outcome would be what I expected. I came up with my theory for the conclusion by putting
together the clues from the movie, little by little. It is very entertaining because the film gives
the audience an opportunity to be detectives for a moment and try to solve the very unique
mystery of the film.
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The storyline is about a father, David, that enjoys watching his daughter
Margot grows up while posting pictures and videos of her to social media, sharing his happiness
with his loved ones. As Margot enters her teenage years, she starts to grow apart and seem distant
from him. One day, she disappears after telling her father that she went to a study group. David
looks on the internet to try to find clues about where she may be. Her friends don’t seem to know
much and don’t help either David or the detective that comes on the case to figure out what
happened to her and hopefully find her alive.My favorite scene is when David starts to get
desperate because of Margot’s disappearance, leading to him brainstorming ideas about how to
find her. This results with him going into Margot’s computer to find answers as to whereabouts.
This is my favorite scene because it is very meaningful and is the moment he starts to realize,
although he doesn’t admit it, that he truly does not know his daughter at all. When he opens her
laptop, it is as if he is entering the unknown territory and we see the distance between him and
Margot. He was very close to her, while she was growing up, but as soon as she hit the teenage
years, she became a stranger.
The important message in this film is that better
communication between family members is encouraged and will improve the dynamics of the
family. For example, at the beginning of the movie, the reason for her disappearance is unknown
and that leads to the suspense and mystery of the storyline. But, let’s say hypothetically that
Margot disappeared on purpose, because she was dealing with a problem and, since she had
grown apart from her dad, she didn’t feel he could help her. If parents, especially those raising
their children alone, communicate and interact better, they can help their kids through the tough
times. They ease the process of going through conflicts so that running away is not their only
choice. I recommend this film for ages 13 to 18, as well as adults and I rate it 4.5 out of 5 stars. It
opens in theaters August 31, 2018 so, check it out. Reviewed by Alejandra G., KIDS
FIRST! Film Critic, age 16
Photo A Cred: Sebastian Baron. ©2018 CTMG, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Photo B Credit: Elizabeth Kitchens; ©2018 CTMG, Inc. All Rights Reserved

Leaders Must Now Think Like Scientists To Leverage All Generations!

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Business
Leaders Must Now Think Like Scientists To Leverage All Generations!

I had lunch with colleagues today to discuss the changes they are facing in their organization. Among the opportunities they see, one stands out: succession  – involving multiple generations and different ways of working into one highly successful organization. To fully leverage this opportunity, the organization will need to continue to evolve their agreements about work processes while holding fast to the foundational principles that have kept them successful for decades.

This is a common challenge across industries. In response to our conversation, I wanted to share this Forbes article (see text of the article below) I wrote in September 2016 and a Voice America interview focusing on Leading with Vision: A Key to Successfully Attract Millennials. 

The reason I selected this combination is, while there are rules of thumb about how to work across generations, every organization is different with specific applications that will work for them. Leaders must take the broad concepts about generational difference and determine which ones apply to them. They need to continually experiment and learn to ensure their enterprise continues to grow and thrive and remains a great place to work. One key for me – everyone in the organization needs to find a common way to work together, this requires give and take from everyone!

During the industrial revolution, leaders managed effectively using command and control and leveraging best practices to solve problems that were common across multiple industries.

Now, however, the most effective leaders work more like scientists. They scan best practices, but also create competitive advantage by creating new and innovative solutions in the face of chaos.

Take Bill, a recent client who runs a mortgage firm in the U.K. June’s vote to exit the EU has thrown the British economy into uncertainty. Rates are dropping and the forecast is uncertain. Bill doesn’t know which direction the market will go, how fast, and what actions will be most effective. He looked to thought leaders before the vote and learned that a true Brexit was unlikely. Well, it happened, and now he needs to move forward and make the best of the uncertainty. The change might even be good for him if he makes the right calls

Many leaders, like Bill, are facing unprecedented challenges. In the past, they could look to best practices and study what others in their industry were doing. Now, in many situations, leaders need to respond immediately, but there is little time to study and no prior model with the same level of complexity that provides a low-risk solution. As leaders, we weren’t trained for this. We were trained to set a vision, build a plan, and work the plan.

With the advent of such changes, companies are responding with strategies like “cross-functional” teams, “early delivery,” and “continuous improvement.” Terms such as “fail fast” — which tell us we need to experiment and learn faster than our competition — have become popular. Learning fast differentiates us from our competitors who are still looking for the best practices. In reality, we are the ones creating the next round of best practices.

But many of us are still stuck between the old ways and new ways of leadership. We haven’t fully embraced what it means to be a leader today and now. First and foremost, we need to rethink our role. We need to change our mindset and behavior from directing to experimenting while realizing that as leaders in complex times, we are creating new solutions rather than drawing from the past. In many situations, history will determine what was right, but if we expect to know it before we take action, we will be paralyzed.

So, what do we do?

One of the most difficult challenges for leaders isn’t changing behavior (that’s the easy part) — it’s changing how we think of ourselves. It is easy to say, “I will act like a scientist,” but when someone comes in with a challenge and the leader has no idea how to proceed, this is a moment of truth. The leader without an answer will likely feel embarrassed and frustrated. The scientist, on the other hand, might actually be excited about the challenge.

As we begin to change our mindset, we begin to approach our leadership as a scientist. Here’s how to get started:

1. Get the best people together for specific opportunities. The members will be dictated by the challenge. It is critical to have people with differing points of view. The people who disagree are often the most important to help identify blind spots and unanticipated challenges. The size of the group and the duration of discussions and evaluation will depend on the time required to respond. The participants should be from multiple geographies, functional departments and organizations.

2. Formulate a hypothesis. The group pulls together all of the perspectives and crafts a clear hypothesis of how to proceed to generate the best overall outcome given the resources, goals and constraints.

3. Formulate experiments. Using the hypothesis as the foundation, it is time to craft experiments that test the hypothesis. Experiments should be designed to prove or disprove the initial hypothesis and give enough information to support taking informed action going forward. The goal is to position the organization to take timely action, minimize risk, and maximize positive impact and learning and scale intelligently based on learning.

4. Conduct the experiment. Once the experiment is crafted, it is time to execute. This usually looks like implementing a well-defined pilot with clearly articulated metrics designed to prove or disprove the initial hypothesis. This is also the opportunity to identify barriers to proper execution.

5. Evaluate, learn and refine. One of the keys to experimentation is to learn as much as possible from each experiment to build success. This is where you will harvest your learnings form the measures as well as barriers or challenges that arose.

I work with a client who formerly worked as a physicist for NASA and now runs an organization heavily impacted by technology change. The culture of his organization is one of experimentation because it is natural to him. When I walk into his office, I see remnants of physical experiments, like a part of a drone, and the tone of the entire organization is open and excited. The physical space is one of the worst I have seen, so it isn’t the architecture but rather the tone of the leader. The leader’s mindset permeates the culture and the organizational systems. People are rewarded for launching new programs and eliminating those that are less effective.

Moving toward this mindset of experimentation allows us to master transformation and build the capacity for ongoing “renovation” of our organization. If this ability to respond quickly becomes a core competency of the organization, because of the mindset of the leader and the resulting culture, organizations are positioned to thrive. For leaders who take on the mindset of the scientist, experimentation becomes fun, they drive interesting innovation, and they inspire others to do the same.

As a reader of this blog and listener to the interviews, please consider enrolling in one of the innovative leadership online leader development program. For additional tools, we recommend taking leadership assessments, using the Innovative Leadership Fieldbook and Innovative Leaders Guide to Transforming Organizations, and adding coaching through our online innovative leadership program. We also offer several workshops to help you build these skills.

Missing My Morning Coffee

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Empowerment
Missing My Morning Coffee

Missing My Morning Coffee

An Excerpt from Practical Enlightenment

I love my morning cup of Joe. Coffee and I have been friends for almost as long as I can remember. When I was a kid, I used to drink from my parents’ forgotten cups, pretending I was an adult. Coffee was my com­panion in college, company during late-night cram sessions. Coffee houses were the destination of choice for my friends and me as we spent long evenings having deep, philosophical discussions about life – life we had yet to live. In later years, when Ariel and I got together, there was a progression of caffeinated times and those that were without. When we moved to our Park Avenue apartment in the ‘80s, there was a little bistro down­stairs where we would have a morning cappuccino and a croissant or sugary pastry. There were years when we gave it up, but even in those times, Ariel and I still en­joyed the pungent aroma of coffee being freshly ground and brewed.

A few years ago, Ariel and I splurged and bought ourselves a lovely espresso machine that heats our cups, grinds the beans, and makes the espresso as strong or as light as we like. Since I like my espresso strong and hot, I pushed the appropriate button one morning and it pressed out a little cup of my favorite elixir. The cup was small, its contents strong. I took my first sip. Mmmm, hot, delicious – both the ritual of a morning cup and its smell and taste. Cup in hand, I set off to start my day. There were things to do and plans to be made. Shortly thereafter I looked down and magically, my cup was empty. I realized that I’d been lost in thought and tossed the coffee down as if it were water, oblivious to the taste, temperature, texture and the moment itself. My thoughts had been all-consuming and the moment was eaten by their magnetic force.

Smiling down at my cup somewhat wistfully, I realized that enjoyable things cease to be enjoyable if you aren’t there to experience them. I couldn’t go back and taste what I’d already drunk. I could make another cup but the caffeine I’d consumed had already worked its magic and I didn’t need more at that moment. Returning to the kitchen, I washed my cup. It was time to move on with my day. It was a short but sweet reminder that if I don’t want to miss my morning coffee, I need to be there while I’m drinking it, even if I’m not yet fully awake.

Since 1987, internationally acclaimed authors, seminar leaders, radio show hosts and business consultants Ariel and Shya Kane have acted as guides, leading people through the swamp of the mind into the clarity and brilliance of the moment. Find out more about the Kanes, their seminars in NYCGermany and Costa Rica, the Say YES to Your Life! Meetups their work has inspired, their Being Here radio show or join their email newsletter. Also get information about their award-winning books. Their newest book, Being Here…Too, Short Stories of Modern Day Enlightenment, will be published this November.

Dan Millman-Life You Were Born to Live, Healthy College Teens, Money Talk for Kids

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Empowerment
Dan Millman-Life You Were Born to Live, Healthy College Teens, Money Talk for Kids

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Twenty-five years ago Dan Millman wrote The Life You Were Born to Live. The original book described thirty-seven life paths, one of which will apply accurately to anyone born between 1750 and 1999. The revised and updated 25th Anniversary Edition covers all forty-five birth numbers (life paths), revealing a quick and accurate means to determine one’s own birth number (and corresponding life path) and the life paths of friends, loved ones, colleagues, parents, and acquaintances. It also covers the strengths and challenges of each life path in areas of health, money, and sexuality, as well as key spiritual laws to help anyone overcome the hurdles on their own path. Twenty years ago, Dan Millman was interviewed by Cynthia Brian about living on purpose. Cynthia Brian and Dan Millman will converse on the subject of his peaceful warrior philosophy of success.

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How can a parent make sure a teen will be healthy at college? Planning in advance of any emergencies will ease the stress. Cynthia Brian offers simple sound advice for sending your child off to school!

Building financial literacy in kids is essential for life success. Important money skills can be taught starting early. Want to know age-appropriate lessons to offer your youngsters? You can raise a capable and financially literate child in a safe, loving environment by incorporating money talk into fun activities. 

Bio: Dan Millman, former world-champion gymnast, coach, martial arts teacher, and college professor, is the author of seventeen books published in twenty-nine languages and shared across generations to millions of readers. His internationally bestselling book Way of the Peaceful Warrior was adapted to film in 2006. Dan speaks worldwide to people from all walks of life. He lives in New York City. www.PeacefulWarrior.com.

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Listen at Voice America Network: https://www.voiceamerica.com/episode/108769/dan-millman-life-you-were-born-to-live-healthy-college-teens-mo

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When you are looking for upbeat, life-changing, and mind-stretching information, you have come to the right place. Host Cynthia Brian takes you on a journey of exploration that will encourage, inspire, and motivate you to make positive changes that offer life-enhancing results. It’s party time on StarStyle®-Be the Star You Are!®. And YOU are invited! Join us LIVE 4-5pm Pt on Wednesdays or tune in to the archives at your leisure. Come play in StarStyle Country. Catch up with all broadcasts on iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/starstyle-be-the-star-you-are!/id669630180?mt=2

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The Gift of Literacy and Storytelling

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Kids
The Gift of Literacy and Storytelling

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“A child who reads will be an adult who thinks”  – Sasha Salmina

Increasing and improving literacy in the USA is a mission of Be the Star You Are!® Joven Hundal hosts this program about literacy launching the show with the chapter, The Gift of Literacy by Kimberly Morgan from the new book, Be the Star You Are! Millennials to Boomers (buy autographed copies at www.CynthiaBrian.com/online-store) 36-time Moth StorySLAM champion and 5-time GrandSLAM champion, bestselling author, and award-winning teacher, Matthew Dicks, provides perspective on the power of storytelling with his new book, Storyworthy. Storytelling is a skill that can help us in every aspect of our lives. Matthew encourages us to find a story in the simple moments of living. Reporter Kenneth Jeon talks about the importance of pictures and visuals to increase literacy as they are generally more accessible and easy to understand. He asserts that Videos and pictures provide an alternative, probably more appealing medium to which people can relate the words they read and from which people can practice their analytical skills.

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“Reading gives you a new perspective on life” – Roald Dahl

Bio: 

Matthew Dicks is a bestselling novelist, thirty-six-time Moth StorySLAM champion, and five-time GrandSLAM champion. In addition to his widespread teaching, writing, and performing, he cofounded (with his wife) Speak Up, which produces sold-out storytelling performances throughout Connecticut, Massachusetts, and New York at least once a month. He lives in Newington, Connecticut. His website is www.MatthewDicks.com.

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Listen at Voice America Radio: https://www.voiceamerica.com/episode/109096/the-gift-of-literacy

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Details on all books at HomeTown Reads: https://hometownreads.com/books/be-the-star-you-are-millennials-to-boomersYouTube book announcement: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Ru354Mhvu0&feature=youtu.be

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California wildfires are raging with ttriple-digittemperatures fueling the devastation. Express Yourself! Teen Radio hosts & Be the Star You Are!® volunteers Joven Hundal and Siri Phaneendra are spearheading BTSYA Operation Disaster Relief. Please donate. http://ow.ly/ks8A30lekGe

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Make a DONATION through PAYPAL GIVING FUND and PAYPAL with 100% going to BTSYA with NO FEES:  https://www.paypal.com/fundraiser/charity/1504

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Check our Book Reviews at our literacy partner, The Reading Tub: https://thereadingtub.org/books/be-the-star-you-are/

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Express Yourself! Teen Radio is produced by Cynthia Brian of Starstyle Productions, llc as an outreach program of Be the Star You Are! charity. To make a tax-deductible donation to keep this positive youth programming broadcasting weekly to international audiences, visit http://www.bethestaryouare.org. Dare to care!

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Operation Finale – Historical Drama That Evokes a Range of Raw Emotion

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Movie Reviews
Operation Finale – Historical Drama That Evokes a Range of Raw Emotion

Fifteen years after the end of World War II, a team of top-secret Israeli agents travels to Argentina to track down Adolf Eichmann, the Nazi officer who masterminded the transportation logistics that brought millions of innocent Jews to their deaths in concentration camps. Hoping to sneak him out of the country to stand trial, agent Peter Malkin soon finds himself playing a deadly game of cat and mouse with the notorious war criminal. KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Abraham F. comments, “Operation Finale is horrifyingly intense as well as funny at times. The two main characters, Peter Malkin (Oscar Isaac) and Adolf Eichmann (Ben Kingsley) are terrifyingly realistic.” See his full review below.

 

Operation Finale

By Abraham Finer, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 13
Link to  video review https://youtu.be/Aoz-pO5bDlM

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Operation Finale is horrifyingly intense as well as funny at times. The two main characters, Peter Malkin (Oscar Isaac) and Adolf Eichmann (Ben Kingsley) are terrifyingly realistic. The suspense feels like it’s on real stakes because this film is based on actual events. One criticism I have is that all the secondary characters are easily forgettable.

 

The story of this film focuses on a group of Israeli agents who are tasked with capturing and bringing back Adolf Eichmann, a Nazi Lieutenant who escaped justice after World War II to Israel. The agents spot him at his house after a spy tells them where he lives. They watch his daily routine until they memorize it and fake their car being broken in, to jump him. They take him back to where they are staying and take turns watching him. One day, the airport calls saying that they have to get a signature from Adolf Eichmann to let them board so they try to convince him to sign. Malkin tries a more friendly approach to make him sign and they get to know each other.

 

My favorite part in this film is when Malkin and Eichmann are getting to know each other. You get to see Eichmann’s side and how he interprets the holocaust. That is very interesting.There are two big names in this film. Ben Kingsley plays Adolf Eichmann and Oscar Isaac plays Peter Malkin. Ben Kingsley has been in numerous award winning films such as Ghandi, which he won an Oscar for best actor. Oscar Isaac has been in Ex Machina, an Oscar winning film and the Star Wars series.

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I recommend this film to anyone who wants to know more about the Holocaust or World War II. You should be aware that the adults in this film smoke and drink. I recommend Operation Finale for ages 13 to 18, as well as adults. I give it 4 out of 5 stars. This film opens in theaters August 29, 2018 so look for it.

Photos © 2018 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Empowerment Host, Cynthia Brian, Publishes 8th Book

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Empowerment
Empowerment Host, Cynthia Brian, Publishes 8th Book

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“I must be crazy to have published two books in 2018” giggles Cynthia Brian.

 

But that is exactly what she did.

 

In February, the first book in her new Garden Shorts series, Growing with the Goddess Gardener, hit the bookshelves, and in August, the third book in the Be the Star You Are!® series, Be the Star You Are!® Millennials to Boomers Celebrating Gifts of Positive Voices in a Changing Digital World was published. The Millennials to Boomersbook marks her 8thbook thus far.

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Be the Star You Are! Millennials to Boomers Celebrating Gifts of Positive Voices in a Changing Digital Worldis a must-read for everyone—regardless of your age. It’s an important read that will lift your spirits and renew your faith in the future of humankind,” writes Diana S. Zimmerman, Author, Entertainer, Entrepreneur, World’s Foremost Lady Magician.Devon Harris, Author, Speaker, Three-time Jamaican bobsled Olympian said “This book dispels the myth that Millennials are entitled. They are empowered and the insights and wisdom they share from their personal experiences will inspire you.”

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In this eye-opening third installment in the Be the Star You Are!®series, Be the Star You Are!Millennials to BoomersCelebrating Gifts of Positive Voices in a Changing Digital World, you will discover 55 true stories about life’s greatest gifts as told by 31 incredible individuals. Each chapter ends with an inspirational quote and a simple, fun exercise to help you embrace your inner star qualities to live a fuller, meaningful life. No matter which generation you were born into, you will gain a better understanding to bridge the gap between Boomers and Millennials while being empowered to join their ranks of greatness.

 

Contributors to this book herald from many races, religions, regions, and political viewpoints yet each share a common value–­–a deep desire to help readers understand that every challenge can be an opportunity for growth and change.

 

Each short, poignant chapter titled The Gift of…offers a true personal story, a lesson learned, a simple exercise to help implement the ideas of the story for application in life, and an uplifting quote. Each contributor (the youngest is thirteen) agreed to abide by a stringent set of guidelines with the hope that their personal insights will propel readers to live fully and tell their own stories.

 

Cynthia Brian’s purpose in creating the Be the Star You Are!®series is to illuminate a simple fact––we were not created equal. We are far better. We are unique. We are individuals. We each have the ability and the responsibility to use our talents, genius, and strengths to sparkle, shine, and make a positive impact in this small galaxy we call Earth. We must strive to be the stars we were born to be.

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This is an opportunity to get inside the heads of Millennials and Boomers to discover the faith, joy, loss, fear, and countless other emotions that living in a digital world has hurled onto our horizon. What may surprise readers of any age is how similar perspectives have transpired throughout history. While much has changed, much remains the same. We are humans in training. Be the Star You Are! Millennials to Boomers Celebrating Gifts of Positive Voices is a book with a perennial view into the diversity, differences, and determination that comprise the indomitable spirit of our leaders of today and tomorrow.

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Cynthia Brian has been producing and hosting the live radio broadcast, StarStyle®-Be the Star You Are!® since 1999 when she began on terrestrial radio in San Francisco. In 2002 she and her daughter, Heather Brittany launched the show on World Talk Radio broadcasting from the studios in San Diego. Ever since the Voice America Network acquired World Talk Radio, StarStyle®-Be the Star You Are!® has been a live fixture every Wednesday at 4pm Pacific on the Empowerment Channel.  Tune in to this uplifting lifestyle program at http://www.voiceamerica.com/show/2206/be-the-star-you-are

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In 2011, Cynthia created and began producing the young adult program, Express Yourself! training teens to be hosts and reporters. Express Yourself! airs on Tuesdays at NOON Pacific on Voice America Kids Network (http://www.voiceamerica.com/show/2206/be-the-star-you-are) with many of these young people contributing to the new book.

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“Be the Star You Are! Millennials to BoomersCelebrating Gifts of Positive Voices in a Changing Digital World is especially poignant because so many of our young radio reporters are part of the book,” says Cynthia, “and they appreciate the value that being part of the Voice America Kids Network has brought to their lives.”

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“I believe that StarStyle® is the longest running weekly broadcast on the network and I absolutely love our talented Voice America crew. It is such a pleasure working with everyone and I truly appreciate the consideration, consistency, and care that everyone at the network provides to us.  In both of my new books, I salute and acknowledge my gratitude to my amazing Voice America radio family,” declares Cynthia Brian.

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Cynthia Brian is available for speaking engagements, book signings, and events. Visit her website for more information at http://www.CynthiaBrian.comand also the radio site at http://www.StarStyleRadio.com

 

Perhaps Libby Gill, Executive Coach, Leadership Expert, and Bestselling Author summed it up best. “Cynthia Brian continues to shine the spotlight on the great work of other people. In this beautiful compilation, she not only gives a voice to Millennials, she champions their sense of purpose, commitment, and contribution. I can’t think of a better role model than Cynthia to demonstrate how to be a servant leader. I highly recommend this book!”

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100% of the proceeds from the sale of the books purchased via http://www.CynthiaBrian.com/online-storewill be donated to Be the Star You Are!® 501 c3 literacy and positive media charity.http://www.BetheStarYouAre.org

 

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Be the Star You Are!Millennials to Boomers

Celebrating Gifts of Positive Voices in a Changing Digital World

by Cynthia Brian and 31 Stellar Contributors

 

ISBN: 978-1-947637-91-7 print book

ISBN: 978-1-939116-05-5 ebook

SELF-HELP / Personal Growth / Success

 

 

 

 

Growing with the Goddess Gardener

ISBN 1978-1-945949968  print book, color interior

ISBN978-1-945949-60-9 ebook

 

 

About Cynthia Brian

Cynthia Brian created her first Fairy Tale Workshop in the mid-1980’s in an effort to teach simple acting techniques to the children of boomers. Since that time she has specialized in coaching thousands of millennials and boomers for acting, speaking, writing, and life skills.  In 1999, Cynthia founded and became Executive Director of Be the Star You Are!® 501 c3 charity with a mission to empower women, families, and youth through increased literacy and positive media messages. New York Times best-selling co-author of Chicken Soup for the Gardener’s Soul, author of Be the Star You Are!®, 99 Gifts for Living, Loving, Laughing, and Learning to Make a Difference, Be the Star You Are!® for TEENS, Be the Star You Are! Millennials to Boomers Celebrating Gifts of Positive Voices Growing with The Goddess Gardener, The Business of Show Business,The Blessing of Love and Relationships,and Miracle Moments®,Cynthia Brian is an internationally acclaimed keynote speaker, personal growth consultant, actor, producer and host of radio and tv shows, newspaper columnist, designer, gardener, and lifestyle coach. As an empowerment architect, Ms. Brian is dedicated to helping others achieve their dreams, recognize the possibilities, and utilize their potential by implementing their unique gifts. 100% of the proceeds from Be the Star You Are! Millennials to BoomersCelebrating Gifts of Positive Voices will be donated to Be the Star You Are!® 501 c3. Cynthia is the proud Momma to two millennials and when she’s not writing, producing, hosting, speaking, traveling, or coaching, you’ll find her in her garden with her adopted barnyard menagerie. www.CynthiaBrian.com; www.BetheStarYouAre.org; www.StarStyleRadio.com

 

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Video Clip: https://youtu.be/1Ru354Mhvu0

The Recipe: A Culinary Story of Hope, Wisdom and Redemption – With John David Man

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Empowerment
The Recipe: A Culinary Story of Hope, Wisdom and Redemption – With John David Man

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It was a delight to talk with John in a recent episode of my radio show, Uplift Your Life: Nourishment of the Spirit. He spoke beautifully about the ideas in The Recipe, which he co-authored with Chef Charles Carroll. Their book is so powerful that there will soon be a movie about it. I look forward to seeing it. John began our conversation by building on the ideas I presented in the beginning part of the show by saying people in the United States are losing our civility and brotherhood. The good news is that we do have the ability to transform what is happening in our nation into love. He encouraged everyone to call their elected representatives and voice their opinion. These ideas are very much in keeping with the rules for living presented in The Recipe. To share a few quotes: “Make the world a better place with everything you do;” “Live with honor: treat every person with respect, and never forget who you’re serving;” and “Compose your life: put your effort into controlling the sail, not the wind.” John also shared some wisdom he has gleaned in his own life: have fun; remember, like billiards, what you do impacts other people; and you have a choice as to how you respond even when it is something emotional. He suggests that we stop, take a breath and be larger than the emotion. Through mindfulness, he taught himself to be kind instead of angry. In his current marriage, he follows one of the chef’s rules of the kitchen, “Pay attention to the little things” and brings his wife a cup of tea every morning. And that’s how you spread love. Everything matters. To listen to this show, I encourage you to click here.

Dr. Paula’s Tip of the Week

My Tip from my e-book, 33 Tips for Self-Empowerment is: “Discover Your Creativity. You can reconnect with your Higher Self by discovering what form of creativity gives you joy. Explore writing, dance, music and art. Create just for your own pleasure, self-expression and self-discovery. If you are concerned about people criticizing you, keep your creative explorations to yourself.” Owen, the young boy in The Recipe, accidentally stumbles upon his creative gift; or if you’re looking at it from a spiritual perspective, he was guided to the Chef who helped change his life. As the story unfolds, we learn the source of his gift. The creative expression of his soul helps Owen heal and find purpose, meaning and joy, which is exactly what it can do for all of us.

Dr. Paula’s Silver Lining Story

Recently in my Facebook posts, I have been more outspoken about my concerns over the inhumane treatment of people seeking asylum in the United States, the eroding of civil rights for all US citizens, the disrespect for our environment and animals, and the increasing threat of nuclear war. Many of my posts have been merely to share facts. So many laws are being repealed and so many governmental actions taken that a lot of it is not being reported. When people ask why I’m sharing this information, I say: we must know the truth of what is happening in our own country. Ignorance is not acceptable. We can’t form an opinion if we don’t have the facts. I want to make sure everyone has the facts. Unfortunately we are being distracted by our president’s tweets, arguments and chaos so that people are not getting all of the information. Even if they’re trying, it’s hard to know what is made up. I even heard one program with several journalists discussing whether our president was intentionally lying to us or just didn’t know the truth. That such a question is even being asked is disturbing and reminiscent of Watergate and the impeachment of Richard Nixon. As a result of my new posts, I’ve had some people writing vicious comments about me and what I’m sharing. I responded by saying: “Because of his abusive posts, I blocked Robert from my page and also deleted most of his comments since they were so offensive and angry. I believe in open communication in a civil and respectful manner. When people violate those boundaries, I delete their posts and block them from my page. I do this for all of us who want Facebook to be a safe place to communicate.” My silver lining came in the form of a number of people who thanked me, liked my comment and shared it. One person wrote: “Thank you for being such an example of a kind person with strong boundaries.” This shows me people are getting tired of the verbal violence. We can’t all agree, but we can treat others the way we wish to be treated. We can be civil and communicate with respect and a willingness to hear and be heard.

Marian Stephens’ Story

This week’s episode of Uplift Your Life: Nourishment of the Spirit featured John David Mann, and he was a font of wisdom and inspiration. His book is a beautiful story that is really a handbook on how to live. Dr. Paula asks listeners how they can turn their anger and frustration into righteous indignation. This is a powerful tool that I am using, and I am beginning to feel my anger dissipate and vanish. I was experiencing an overwhelming bout of anger towards my oldest son, and it came to me that I am just shouting into a void; my anger and words are vanishing into the ether unresolved. I realize what I am grappling with is the loss of my relationship with my son, the loss of my vision and expectations of what motherhood was going to be, and the loss of my dream of who I would be at age 42. How do I come to terms with this? Mr. Mann’s book focuses on how to deal with loss and the anger one feels when trying to do so. Having a mentor is key and finding how to be that mentor for yourself. I am lucky that Dr. Paula is my mentor, and she is teaching me how to be my own. I will turn my anger into righteous indignation by focusing energy on healing myself and taking back control of my life. I am indignant that I have encountered abuse and disease, and I will no longer accept this to be my reality.

John David Mann says that we can transform our nation into a place of love and greatness.  When I heard Mr. Mann say, “loss is a beginning not an ending”, it is the first time I truly believed that this place in life is a place to start. He says that who we are is shaped by the things that happen to us and the things that are happening around us. I have experienced traumatic events and illness that have changed my circumstances significantly. I am using these happenings as a springboard to become more resilient, courageous, and creative. My default emotional state is becoming calm and strong.

John David Mann says everything you do reveals everything you are. If you pay attention to and are purposeful with the little things in life, you will bring about huge change. My husband is so skilled at doing this – he makes our bed every day, keeps our home neat and pleasing, and helps me stay organized. This inspires me to pay careful attention to the smaller details, too, which helps me confront the larger problems I face with bravery and a calm mind and heart. Mr. Mann says that making little gestures and taking time to discover new things about your partner everyday will help prevent entropy from taking hold of your relationship. My husband and I focus our energy on doing this daily, and I am grateful to hear that we are on the right track.

John David Mann speaks beautifully about relationships and how to have productive disagreements. Simply take a deep breath and make a choice when confronting opposition that is not anger based. My life coaching sessions with Dr. Paula are teaching me how to do exactly this. I am finding the wherewithal to take a breath and let my often momentary anger and frustration disperse before speaking or engaging in an argument. This episode reinforces the fact that we have no control over the people and events that surround us, but we do have complete control over how we handle ourselves. I have believed this to be true for some time, but I am now putting it into practice constantly, and it is improving everything.

Dr. Paula’s Coaching Response

Marian, I can tell how deeply John’s ideas resonated with you. He clearly has chosen to take his life in his own hands, make deep changes, learn how to create a loving and harmonious relationship, and live a life of meaning and joy. When someone makes that kind of commitment, they become a shining example.  

We are all here on the earth plane to learn and grow. Some of us have harder lessons than others in this incarnation. I find comfort in my belief that I chose this path before I came to earth. When I accept responsibility for my choices, not blame, but responsibility, it changes everything because if I’m responsible for my responses to what has happened to me, I also have the ability to make new choices and change the quality of my life. I applaud you for taking responsibility and choosing to grow and heal.

I want to remind you of the 2 mantras/affirmations that I use every day to help me through the difficult times and to bring more love and peace into my day:

  • I say these 2 sentences for 3 minutes silently over and over again every morning:

I am love as I am loved.

All is love as all is loved.

  • I say this one over and over again for as long as I need it at any time of the day or night:

Peace in my mind

Peace in my body

Peace in my spirit

Peace in my soul

For Previous Shows Like This:

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CONTACT DR. PAULA TO SCHEDULE YOUR COMPLEMENTARY 10 MINUTE PHONE CONSULTATION

Dr. Paula, The Life Doctor, has helped hundreds of thousands of people improve their health, wealth and relationships through her writing, coaching, and speaking. Contact her today to get started on your personal journey. Recently Dr. Paula Joyce, PhD was chosen by Expertise as one of the 16 Best Life Coaches in Dallas.

Cell: (214) 208-3533

Email:  paula@paulajoyce.com

To learn more about Dr. Paula, please visit her website at www.paulajoyce.com.

To hear more shows from Uplift Your Life: Nourishment of the Spirit, please click here.

 

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