Today I had to stop.

I woke up to the news of the Las Vegas shooting. Last week my heart was heavy for Puerto Rico. On a closer to home note, I was in a car accident over the weekend that left me shaken to the core. There seems like so little one can do while sitting at a desk, or watching from a screen at home. It's times like these we want to rush in and help to aid the situation. I've been struggling with the overwhelming sense of helplessness in the middle of all this chaos. What can we do? How can we help? I was reminded yesterday of a simple yet very hard lesson surrounding one word.


On TV it's preached. In referencing our administration and the U.S. as a whole, it's encouraged. But what does it mean? What does it truly mean to love – to share it, spread it, and ultimately live it?

This discussion comes down to one simple fact: In order to love, you must first realize that you are loved.

In order to love, you must first realize that you are loved. Click To Tweet

I can't help think of the ultimate example of love... For me, as a Christian, that example is Jesus Christ. I realize not everyone believes the way I do, so feel free to adjust accordingly. But Christ was the ultimate example of showing compassion and love.

We see so many celebrities and news outlets saying, "we need more love," or "love is all we need," which is true. However, how are we able to love our neighbor, our friends, or those who bring harm to us, if we ourselves aren't sure how to be loved? You could google "how to be loved" like I did. It will bring you to a wikihow page with 9 simple steps. Or we can look inside ourselves and realize we are all truly broken people. Once we realize this, it's easier to give grace and lend compassion to our fellow man. None of us are perfect and we are all in desperate need of love.

Today as we go about the news cycle and uncover new details about these tragedies; let's not forget that we ourselves are broken. Let's show compassion and love to those around us with the realization they are broken and in just as much need of love as we are.

6 Highlights from 2016

2016 was quite the year. It had its highs and lows, but it also brought some very inspiration and life-changing moments. I've selected 6 of the most inspirational moments from 2016 to share with you.

1. Attending A Trump Rally - February 2016

Now go with me for a second on this one...I'm not a Trump supporter and definitely didn't vote for the guy. I did, however, attend his only rally in Arkansas to see what was up. This was a very inspirational moment for me because it showed the true democracy of our country. It was at this moment I realized just how divided our country was and still is. I overheard good and bad. You can read my full review here. All in all, it made my beliefs stronger. It rooted me in my perspective.

2. Moving Into My Own House - March 2016

Yes, I had never lived alone before March of 2016. I've either lived at home or with roommates. This was probably the most liberating thing about 2016. While a lot of responsibility came with this, it gave me freedom and relieved stress in ways I hadn't felt before. Knowing that I had a space that was truly mine was so refreshing.

3. Bentonville Film Festival - May 2016

This one might be even weirder than attending a Trump rally. I spent almost a week, with my best friends, working. That's usually a recipe for disaster, but it brought us closer together as friends and gave me a unique perspective on what the future holds. We had great fun, but also learned a lof of lessons. We're all in our early twenties and running a major festival together was one for the books!

4. Beyoncé in New York City - June 2016

As shallow as it might sound, seeing Beyoncé up close at Citi Field was life changing. You don't exactly understand until you've been there. She was not only inspirational but her passion for her music and fans was contagious. I'll forever remember standing there, literally 15ft. from her, questioning if my dreams were big enough.

5. Vegas With My Best Friends - June 2016

This was one of the more fun inspirational moments of the year. My friend Zak had his 21st birthday. We surprised him with a trip to Vegas and the see our friend DIPLO. There is nothing like traveling to your favorite city with your best friends to really put life into perspective.

6. Finally Doing Me - August 2016

The photo above pictures Chairman of the U.S. Marshals Museum Board of Directors, Cole Goodman with President & CEO of the Museum, Patrick Weeks. Just an hour before I took this photo I had gotten off the phone with my inner circle of friends letting them know I was going to leave the Museum and transition to my full-time role at Baseline Collective. What is so unique about the situation is the support I received from my Museum family. They were supportive and I couldn't have asked for a better former boss(es) Jim and Patrick to give me their blessing to transition.