On Mondays Say, “Thank You”.

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We see all sorts of hashtags out there:  #mondaymotivation, #wednesdaywisdom. These serve to buoy us through the week with its ups and downs.  Lat night on What Women Want Talk Radio, we had the opportunity to experts to help us get through our weeks with finesse.

Listen to the conversation here.

Our two guests this week, Energy Management Coach & Author Lawana Harris and Celebrity & Lifestyle Expert Jill Simonian, are wonder woman, balancing and harmonizing vibrant careers with motherhood.  We see that hashtag #mondaymotivation, but Jill and Lawana have tips to keep up positive and productive all week long.  If you find yourself snoozing at your desk mid-week, check out this powerful conversation.

I think the ultimate message of this conversation was to ground yourself in gratitude everyday, which will power you through the difficult passages of the work week.  When the alarm clock rings, do you say thank you?  I am going to!

Thoughts on Passover & Easter

I am very blessed to live in a household that celebrates both Easter and Passover.  I am on a very poignant personal journey at the moment and my thoughts turned to the messages of this week.  I think we could all use a little wisdom from the Easter and Passover stories.

A few thoughts, inspired by Passover:

  1. Identify 10 things that are plaguing you or holding you back.  Understand that you can’t control them.  Commit to controlling how you respond to them.  Identify 10 blessings.
  2. What are you a slave to? Money, prestige, appearances?
  3. You may be the unlikely choice to be a leader. Lead anyway, even if by example.
  4. All who are wander are not lost. Keep going.  It may take a while.
  5. What things in your life need an exit strategy?

A few thoughts, inspired by Easter:

  1. Not everything is as it appears. Just because something is dormant doesn’t mean it is dead.
  2. Sometimes life is really unfair and unjust. Fight for justice and fairness when you can.
  3. We all experience betrayal. We all experience disappointment in our friends. Forgive and look at your boundaries.  Do you have healthy boundaries?
  4. Fortune is fickle. We may be on top of the world one week, crucified the next.  Stay humble.
  5. There is always a new beginning, even after the worst circumstances. Live for today, hope for tomorrow.

Whether your personal journey is through the book of Exodus or the New Testament or trailblazing your own path, spring is a great time to re-evaluate all that needs fresh energy in your life.  I hope you are having a Blessed Passover and/or Joyous Easter!  And for those not celebrating, a Happy Spring!

Making It Personal: Turning Our Problems into Profit

Have a problem?  You may have business opportunity.  What’s so interesting about Stacia Pache & Rochelle Graham is they both had personal issues and instead of endlessly searching for an existing product to meet their needs they decided to make the product they were looking for themselves.

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Now, they both have vibrant, growing businesses.  Learn more about ItBandz, Stacia’s quest for a better knee band, and Alikay Naturals, Rochelle’s company, which grew from Rochelle’s need for rapid recuperation of her hair on this great interview on What Women Want Talk Radio hosted by Judy Goss on Mogul.

Got a problem?  Get a business mindset!

Penny Wise Pound Foolish

Peruse this article from the Austin Business Journal on the debate on film incentives in the state of Texas.

If you’ve ever done a professional film budget, the often invisible costs of making a movie are massive:  permits, feeding  people, putting cast and crew up in hotels, renting vehicles, supplies, location fees.  A film of any scale involves a massive infrastructure, often localized, to support it.  The last budget I prepped, I had to price out renting a local herd of goats, feeding said goats and the cost of a local wrangler and stable fees.  It’s this detail and minutiae that really make the cost of film what it is–and profitable for locals that can cash in on it.

I really want to film in Texas.  Why?  It’s my home state.  It’s where many of my stories are.  It’s what I know.  I probably won’t.  Texas’ neighbors have better incentives.  I want to do something for my community and filming could bring massive influxes of money to a very economically vulnerable area.

When I was asked at the San Antonio Film Festival why I hadn’t spent more time filming in my home state, I said at the time that, “It was not where my opportunities were, where my education led me.”  I keep returning to that question.  Here’s another reason why, one I couldn’t quite articulate in the moment:

The state doesn’t commit to its film community.  

Why should I commit to spend potentially millions of dollars in the state?

Movies aren’t made overnight.  They are long-haul projects.  It may take a screenwriter a year to get a camera-ready draft.  It may take us a year or more to get funded.  It may take us several months of pre-production, which will likely involve traveling back and forth.  We try to hire locally qualified people for the crew.  We will be in your state 30-60 days just filming, 12 hour days and paying for food and hotels and ancillary services, like dry cleaning, local assistants, etc.  We may be in your state several months after that if there’s a great post-house.  We may spend money on a Texas premiere if it’s a Texas subject.

The stability of state’s commitment to arts funding matters.  It’s a risk management consideration.  If you’re always threatening to pull a plug on your incentives, it’s not enticing.

 The counter-argument is that film jobs are temporary jobs and that is true to a point, but if you invest in creating a community, the jobs will keep coming.  Just ask Atlanta.  It seems there are some in government that would much rather have its denizens chained to an overabundance of low-paying retail jobs than branching out into a more highly skilled, better paid, film position.

I think it’s very shortsighted of the Texas legislature to nix film funding.  You could film almost anything in Texas, such is the geological and architectural diversity.  This is a whole state issue, not just an Austin or Dallas concern, where much of the film making takes place.  There are many areas that could benefit from more filming.  And frankly, it’s unnerving when New Mexico is standing in as Texas on film.  It’s happening more and more often.

 There’s a poster on the wall at the UTLA Center, an older poster, red, of all the great films made in Texas, which was a promo poster done by the Texas Film Commission a few years ago.  I hope they have to update that poster soon, with new, great films being made in Texas, but  the legislature must seize the opportunity.

Why I Support Student Filmmakers

Today, I had the privilege of emailing back and forth Dr. Diane Dusick of the Inland Empire Media Academy, regarding their upcoming film festival.  This year will be the third year in a row that I’ve been a judge of their student film festival.

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I think student films are vitally important to the future of film making, perhaps not the individual films themselves, but the validation that young cinematic voices need to thrive in the very competitive film industry.  How many times have I hears someone say, “It’s just a student film?”  Often.

“It’s just a student film” negates the fact that the student has chosen a career path in film.

“It’s just a student film” negates the artistic voice of the student, even if that voice is still trying to find itself.

“It’s just a student film” lowers our expectations and does not explore the struggle all film students have in making their first works.

It’s a battle to make a film, even for a pro, even for someone who’s made hundreds.  How do we create pros?  How do we foster professionalism in filmmaking?  Though schools, through mentoring, through sharing.

This is why I support student film.

Multiple Career MANIA

Such an informative show! If you missed it, listen to it, especially if you are a multi-taking moguless! 🙂

Take Action to Alleviate Hunger

I saw this petition on Change.org today and I had to sign it.

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Photo courtesy of Change.Org

One in five Americans go hungry and one reason that happens is because of waste.  There is no one culprit, though this petition specifically asks Albertson’s to take action.  It’s an attitude adjustment that we need to make toward “ugly produce”.  Food is food–whether it’s picture perfect or not.

It’s time to embrace the ugly produce so we can eradicate the ugly reality of hunger in our nation.  It’s time to embrace the ugly realities, so that we don’t place blame, but take action.

Multiple Career Mania: How Many Tabs YOU Got Open?

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In the race to be more productive, we can lose our self-care and inner knowing.  Often, we also have a hard time juggling priorities, especially if we are pursing multiple streams of income. This week on What Women Want Talk Radio,  Joan Pelzer of Joan Pelzer Media LLC and Pamella Horton of Maven’s Connections shared some great insight and life hacks about not only being more productive, but being productive in meaningful ways.

Learn more on Mogul.