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Let's just call it what it was. 2016 was a sh*t show of a year.

The politics. The media. The terrorism.

Yes, on the most personal of personal notes, my 2016 was as hard as they come. Really f*cking hard. The kind of hard that makes or breaks you, reminds you that life is in no way a cake walk, and hits you dead in the face with a bucket of ice cold water - and if you wanted a towel to dry it up, you'd have to make it yourself. And I knew this would be the year. The year of so many hard things.

But despite all this, as I look back, I realize that 2016 was a beautiful kind of hard. 2016 was the year.

It was the kind of hard that plunged me headfirst into entrepreneurship and being able to support my family. It was the kind of hard that forced me to love myself enough to put my ideas out into the world. It was the kind of hard that inspired me to find out what it meant to be successful. It was the kind of hard that made me appreciate the quiet. The simple pleasure of getting into bed after yet another tough day. The beauty of just being.

2016 was the year I realized that growth comes from fear. That the hard times are designed to push you out of your comfort zone. That without the lows to our highs, we're all merely just existing.

This is why 2016 was, for me, a beautiful kind of hard.

2016 was the year that proved to me that I was designed to succeed. That I could never just merely exist. That I was designed to use my voice for a greater purpose - to help one, two, or three thousand people with my words.

And as the days of my life grew harder in 2016, I became more driven, more focused, more determined.

This is why 2016 was, for me, a beautiful, life-changing kind of hard.

That life-changing kind of hard that makes you realize how much strength and capability you really have. This year provided me with the perfect opportunity to go out and grab life by the balls, make success my own, and begin pursuing my passions with a fervor I never knew existed within me.

Because 2016, for me, was hard.

And because of that, my inner-superwoman took over. Kicked aside the insecure, worried little woman that was standing in this reality, and prepared to dominate. I told myself there was no way I'd let this hardship get the best of me or my family - and that I wouldn't stop until success was a reality once again.

Because 2016 was hard. Beautifully f*cking hard.

Is there a part of me that wishes for less worry, less stress, and easier times in 2017? Maybe.

But is there a part of me that would keep the worry, the stress, and the "hard" if it meant my continued hunger for success and change? My newfound compassion for the world around? My love for what comes from hard work?You're damn right - in every fiber of my being.

So, for this new year, I wish you whatever you want. I wish for peace in the world, your happiness, my happiness, and all of what makes everybody feel good. But if 2017 only gets messier and life only gets harder, I wish you all the strength to turn the pain of all into beauty.

Here's to the hard times.

Because 2016 was the year. My year.

The Wall

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