How Do You Navigate a Hard Conversation?

Welcome To BW Missions: Newsletter 16

Fear. Vulnerability. Being exposed. 

Speaking your truth. Being let down. 

Worst-case scenario outcomes.

Courage. Resilience. 

Excitement. Adrenaline. 


These are the words that come to mind for me leading up to a hard conversation – the type where I couldn’t even start to predict the outcome. Beyond the cognitive or rational level, these moments of anticipation are equally correlated with visceral feelings or discomfort, tension, and unease. 

If I’ve learned anything over the past few months, it’s that preparation is everything. This rings especially true for conversations that are potentially life-changing, which could that could happen with anyone from your friend, partner, or coworker to even your therapist. 

Here’s what I mean by “preparing.” First of all, find a constructive way to release the thoughts, feelings, and physical sensations that are stressing you out or standing in your way. 

Think about what you want to say beforehand, then consider potential responses and how you’d navigate them. There’s no such thing as a perfect plan. Making an effort to understand the other person’s perspective is what counts.

Equally important is trying to understand why you feel the way you do. Develop a plan to tackle that sentiment head-on to handle your own feelings with care.

When we keep things inside and let them boil up, they usually come out in unhealthy ways. I’m a big proponent of not only acknowledging, but also unpacking and navigating all your feelings, even unpleasant ones. These opportunities give us all a unique chance to grow. 

Major brownie points go to anyone who takes ownership in something they’re navigating after reading this, then acts on it intentionally. I’ll reward you with a BW Missions golden ticket chocolate-laden chocolate bars if you share it with me within the next two weeks. 🍫🍫

Robbie Kellman Baxter: Newsletter 16 Featured Mission

A true leader and role model, Robbie is the founder of Peninsula Strategies LLC, a strategy consulting firm with an abundant roster ranging from household names like Netflix, SurveyMonkey and Yahoo!, to exciting venture-backed startups. 

A Harvard alumni and Stanford MBA, Robbie wears countless hats, and she wears them well. As an author, she published The Membership Economy: Find Your Super Users, Master the Forever Transaction, and Build Recurring Revenue, one of Inc. Magazine’s Top 5 Marketing books of 2015. Her work has been quoted by major media outlets everywhere from CNN, Consumer Reports and The New York Times to the Wall Street Journal. 

Robbie is a strong public speaker, and has captivated audiences of thousands, from corporations, associations, and universities. In past lives, she’s served as a New York City Urban Fellow, a consultant at Booz Allen & Hamilton, and a Silicon Valley product marketer. 

Beyond Robbie’s subject matter expertise and status as the world’s foremost expert on subscription pricing and membership models, her desire to serve others is second to none. She spends a great deal of time mentoring young solopreneurs and consultants in one-on-one settings, readily offering her expertise to those who are building their own businesses and professional careers. I have already learned a great deal from Robbie’s work and from the way she carries herself as a servant leader.

Subscribe to her Membership Manifesto Newsletter Today!

Growth: Newsletter 16

How I Met the Person Who Gave Me Hope for the Future: Simon Sinek

Who are you?

What is the feeling you want to instill in the people around you? 

When you were younger, did you fully understand yourself? 

Does your online personality match who you are in real life?

For the past few years, I’ve embarked upon a challenging journey in search of self-discovery. I’ve paved the path to uncovering my true self with the answers to questions like the ones above. Today, I’m sharing the story of a set of formative personal experiences that changed my life. I hope reading this narrative helps make your own road a little easier to travel.

I hope you enjoy my new article, and take away some impactful lessons you can apply to your own life!

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Opportunities: Newsletter 16


Ashley Steele is someone I always admired for building a vibrant business in Athens, GA, and I’m thrilled to announce that her team is hiring! Once Like A Spark is actively recruiting two strategic, executive hires: a Director of Logistics to handle customer service, and a Director of Customer Acquisition to manage sales and marketing.

Both roles involve managing established support teams, and require working on-site or commuting at least twice a week. If you or someone you know have developed and led strategy during the growth period for a start-up or SMB, one of these roles might be a perfect fit!

PS: The faster Ashley helps grow the Athens economy, the faster I’ll move back!


Mark Green, business & leadership growth coach, just launched his new website (shout out for an excellent job to Classic City Consulting!) The final product is pretty impressive. Mark works with Executive Teams and CEO’s of large scale companies to help them have the hard questions, hold team members accountable, and get CEOs out of the weeds.

Curious, intuitive, and incredibly smart, he’s been a mentor to me as well as a client for the past year. I also highly recommend his latest book, Creating A Culture of Accountability; it’s such an edifying and easily digestible read.

Last Call: Join Our Podcast Launch Team!
We have finally edited, produced, filmed, built a landing page, and written long-form blog posts about our podcast! In early February, we’re excited to release The One Away Show. 

It’s taken a hefty effort to make every episode absolutely perfect and ready for the rollout. As we approach the finish line, we now need a band of supporters to drive social posts, Itunes Reviews, and downloads. Would love for you to be part of our mission to help others find their path. And of course, we have ways to give back too!

Resources: Newsletter 16

Get Vulnerable With Brené Brown’s New TED Talk 

I’ve always been a huge fan of Brené Brown. That’s been especially true recently as I’ve really started “feeling” again and process my thoughts. Her TED Talk is so empowering and discusses how stories are data and why we should lean into discomfort. If you haven’t watched it yet, I highly recommend checking this out.

What I’m Reading Right Now: The Ride of a Lifetime

Optimism. Courage. Decisiveness. Fairness. These are the four principles that guided the vision of Disney’s CEO of 15 years, Robert Iger. My friend Justin Lafazan recommended to me his fascinating book about how he came into this daunting role at one of the hardest times possible. In 2005, the competition was at an all-time high and technology was constantly evolving.

However’s Disney’s brand stood for something so much greater – bringing imagination to every kid across the world. Disney persisted onward thanks to his leadership.

My New Favorite Movie: Beautiful Day In The Neighborhood

The other day, I took myself out to the movies to watch an investigative journalist interview Mr. Rogers, everyone’s favorite childhood hero. 
The plot took a surprising turn of events when Mr. Rogers flipped the script and started interviewing the journalist about his life. It really made me think about what it means to live with meaning and the important things like spending time with family. This movie is a walk into righteous humanity; I can’t recommend it enough! 

P.S. I have to admit, I make a great date even for myself! I took full advantage of those $1 refills 😉

Change Your Life Day by Day with a Mindset Journal

What if you had 60 days to transform how you could think, act, and feel? My friend Case Kenny just launched a Mindset Journal to help you be more intentional and chase the right things in life. Check It Out Here! 

Events: Newsletter 16


Next Gen HQ is energizing the world’s greatest entrepreneurs to create their meaningful businesses. The 6th annual Next Gen Summit is coming to NYC June 5-7, 2020! A top-rated event by Forbes and Inc, NGS will gather 1250+ talented entrepreneurs to access mentorship from leading entrepreneurs, listen to inspirational thought leaders (including keynote Ray Dalio), connect with execs from Fortune 500 companies, network with venture funds (like Bain Venture), pitch to investors, and more. Apply here to experience the momentum and take part in $197 early-bird pricing until April!

When: June 5-7, 2020
Where: Manhattan, NYC
 Apply here to experience the momentum!

“Vulnerability isn’t about winning or losing; it’s having the courage to show up even when you can’t control the outcome.”

Brené Brown

I think this quote encapsulates everything above perfectly … so, no explanation needed.

The Pathfinder
Catherine Kushan

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