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Speaker Stories: Rebecca Fleetwood Hession, CEO of

Jan 22nd, 2020

Author: Heather Lowey

“You have everything you need in this moment to thrive.”

Quite a pointed statement to begin Rebecca’s talk. She spent the next 40 minutes making us laugh while also reflect on just how true this statement really is. 

The brain doesn’t want to settle for always striving but rather prefers to be thriving. It’s in our nature. Picture a flower stem reaching for the sun. Thriving in the sunlight and its own greatness versus the very definition of strife meaning “angry or bitter disagreement over fundamental issues; conflict.” The visual of the flower pulling itself into greatness perfectly portrays her differentiation between strive and thrive. 

Imagine for a moment living in a state of survival mode, settling, conflict, and constantly striving. Feels heavy and full of angst, right? Now instead imagine we create the conditions in our brain to thrive. How? When our brain searches for thriving, we give positive information by which we will be transformed. 

Rebecca gave us three key opportunities in which this can be achieved. 


Fear is a tiger sitting on your desk ready to pounce when you walk into work. It’s physical, eminent danger. Somewhere along the way, we’ve mistaken UNCERTAINTY for fear. Vastly different, however, we allow our brains to fill in the empty space between thoughts with uncertainty masked as fear. Rebecca illustrated this mash up of fear and uncertainty as, “the little b***h in our head” who fills in the gaps. 

While an entertaining visual, how do we overcome? “Put her in the passenger seat with her seat belt and a snack. You can ride with me but you sure can’t drive.” It’s really about recognition of the uncertainty and reframing the thought for ourselves. 

Not everything we THINK or BELIEVE is actual TRUTH. While it may feel true to us, these Limiting Beliefs allow assumptions to fill the space in our brain. Even though we can’t stop our brain from filling in the spaces, we CAN create the messaging for the filling. Expect the situation to go well versus jumping to negative town. Visualize positive experiences. 

Expect and visualize the outcome to be exactly how you want it to go. Our brain doesn’t know the difference between fact and fiction. Therefore, fill the space with positive messaging. 

How to overcome the mask of fear (really uncertainty):

  • Be nice to ourselves. We’re Midwest nice to everyone else, why not ourselves?!
  • Eliminate bonding with the girls over bitching.
  • Stop downplaying the things important to us. STAND TALL IN OUR DREAMS. 

“Life is messy, but we learn in the mess.”


She next encouraged everyone to study themselves to unearth their unique gifts. Furthermore, being intentional in using those gifts each day. This creates the differentiation between falling into bed drained from striving all day versus falling into bed exhausted from THRIVING all day. 

“Your uniqueness is your competitive advantage, use it!” 

Using your gifts to serve others showcases your talents in a way to support others and leads to our brain thriving. Filling in the empty spaces in a pleasing manner to continue having positive thoughts and in turn, positive outcomes. 

She likened this expression of talents to marbles and puzzle pieces. While marbles are smooth and seemingly perfect, put a handful of marbles on a table and they will not stick together. However, puzzles pieces snap together into perfection. They are far stronger pieced together just as our uniqueness in talents pieced together create a whole. 

Stand tall in your strengths. 

And don’t forget, “your story matters, even the struggle.” Every great hero’s journey comes with a dip. The struggle. This is where you discover others to support you and are forever changed. 


This one hit me right in the feels. As a mother AND career woman, the journey can sometimes feel lonely. It’s what drove me to start a blog to talk about this very subject. In the same manner, Rebecca created her BadassWomen’s Council. Find people who get you. Your council, your tribe, your huddle, whatever you want to call it, find it. 

When you combine as a team, it has a ripple effect. As you step into the space of uncertainty, resist the temptation to go into the negative place of assumptions. Rebecca shared a great example of two amazing women at the gym. These fabulous ladies almost let the assumption of “what the other would think” get in the way of simply introducing themselves to each other. This chance introduction blossomed into an amazing friendship of mutual respect and connection. 

How often in life do we not make the introduction, ask the question, or send the email for UNCERTAINTY in our assumptions? Assume the positive response, not the negative one. There is a connection waiting to blossom on the other side of this uncertainty. 


To circle back around, you have everything you need in this moment to thrive. First, a change to your perspective in your current situation and what you allow to fill the gap in your brain will serve you in a whole different way. Second, you have amazing gifts and talents, so stand tall and proud in yours while simultaneously recognizing these gifts in others. Lastly, find your people. No one thrives walking this journey alone. 

And one more thing. Stop trying to get caught up. We’re not machines. On the contrary, we’re passionately and courageously curious by nature. Spending your life trying to get caught up is a horrible rat race with an elusive finish line. 

  • Be You
  • Be Curious
  • Be Connected

Ladies, we don’t have to be fearless. Fear is our primal instinct there saving us from the tiger. We do though want to face uncertainty head on. Acknowledge it, then create the messaging around it to support your dream, standing tall in your talents. Now, go get it! 

Want to connect with Rebecca? Find her at and join her community of badass women here: