Susannah Conway has been a virtual companion to me over the past years, always sharing her generous spirit, beautifully crafted words and soulful photography. I was drawn to Susannah through the way that she shared her grief. The grief and healing that came when she lost her beloved suddenly and tragically. It was the way that she opened her broken heart so that others could enter into their own healing that sparked my admiration and immense respect for this extraordinary human.
Susannah embraced my invitation to be a part of the Inspired by interview series, reflecting her beautiful generous self even when in the midst of launching a new website and new courses! I cannot thank you enough Susannah for all that you do in this world so humbly and authentically.
Where in the world do you call home?
Describe your home and neighbourhood for us:
I live in a rented flat in the Notting Hill area of West London. I love it here!
How would you describe yourself in 3 words?
Creative. Honest. Empathic.
What is the purpose at the heart of your work?
Alongside the teaching, I weave words and images together to share my story in the hope you see a little of yourself reflected back. The inspiration for my work is mined out of my own life as I navigate plot twists and report back from the trenches. I don’t have the definitive answers but I do have a heck of a lot of questions.
My passion is helping others start asking the questions for themselves,
using creativity as the key to open the door.
The healing path is one that never ends and I hope that by chronicling the light and dark of my life I inspire others to do the same. It’s by sharing our stories that we feel less alone.
What do you think is the most important thing for us to teach the children of our generation?
“If every 8 year old in the world is taught meditation, we will eliminate violence from the world within one generation.” That’s what the Dalai Lama said and I think he’s onto something. It’s important to teach children how to feel their feelings and help them develop their self-esteem. We should also equip them with the knowledge of what it means to be introverted or extroverted and how to manage their energy accordingly.
Which food and drink do you consider essential to your mental and physical wellbeing?
Vegetables, water and really excellent coffee. Everything else feels like a treat, but those three are essential for me.
How do you take care of yourself amongst the busy demands of daily life?
I drink a lot of water and do my best to get more rest when I need it. I do yoga and go to the gym because staying vaguely fit gives me more stamina. I try to switch off the computer at an appropriate time each day but that doesn’t always happen. However, being self employed means that even if I’m still working at 11pm I’ve probably had a more leisurely morning so it all balances out. (that’s what I tell myself anyway!)
What has been your greatest lesson in life so far?
How to be alone. Even though I’m an introvert I still spent my 20s rushing through life overreacting to every emotion I felt. My relationships weren’t the healthiest yet I was terrified to be on my own. It wasn’t until I went through bereavement in my early 30s that I was forced to be alone for the first time in my life. That loss opened the door to healing my past as well as the present, and from there I have learned how to relish my own company. I entered my 40s as a healed and whole woman – it’s been my proudest achievement so far.
What is your best advice for anyone else who has a dream to be extra-ordinary?
Be yourself and dig deep to find out what that really means. You are already extraordinary!
Sweet treat: Nectarines
Holiday destination: New York
Colour: Blood red
Memory: Every moment spend with my nephew
Blog: Impossible to pick just one so I will say my own. Creating that first blog back in 2006 changed everything.
Online store: Amazon
Smell: Linden blossom blooming in June
Susannah Conway is the author of This I Know: Notes on Unraveling the Heart and forthcoming LONDONTOWN: A Photographic Tour of the City’s Delights (Chronicle Books, 2016). A photographer, writer and teacher, her classes have been enjoyed by thousands of people from over 50 countries around the world. Co-author of Instant Love: How to Make Magic and Memories with Polaroids, Susannah helps others remember their true selves, using creativity as the key to open the door. Visit her at SusannahConway.com and say Hi on Instagram.