Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in personal development but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Susan Brennan, Founder of Growth and Grace, located in San Diego, CA, USA.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

I’m a lifestyle confidant and consultant for high-profile individuals. My clients are the ones that everyone else comes to for wisdom, a listening ear, and to bounce ideas off of…and I’m the one they come to. Everyone needs a trusted source to be deeply real with (especially when things aren’t going as expected), to help them see a fresh outlook, eliminate distractions, and focus on what truly matters. My clients come to me for encouragement, perspective, and revelation on how they can discover and hit their big vision goals.

Tell us about yourself

I’m a “people person,” as they say, with a heart for helping others truly realize how gifted they are and helping them see what’s been standing in the way of them achieving their big vision goals. My company was born out of recognizing a vacancy I saw in corporate America back in 2012. Executives needed support on the personal side of things because all of their attention was going solely toward business, and I came in as their go-to person for all things that needed doing (i.e., their personal assistant). It has since transitioned to me supporting people from more of an emotional and mental standpoint, and now I get the privilege of being their go-to person for all things that need solving (i.e., their trusted lifestyle confidante and consultant). I’m motivated by making an impact and love that my clients get to experience such clarity, growth, and refreshing through our work together.

Outside of my clients (who I adore!), I am actively involved in my church here in San Diego, and I love going for long walks and petting every dog I see along the way. I moved to San Diego from WA state a few years back, and it quickly became home. I can often be found enjoying a great book or wonderful conversations with my dearest people, perusing an antique shop, or sipping on some tea. One way or another, I’m enjoying life and taking full advantage of living in sunny SD!

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

Allowing things to change. I used to be such a control freak, and just couldn’t let things be different than the original plan, and allowing things to change and transition through the years has been hugely liberating and has contributed to expansion I simply couldn’t have imagined when I was stuck in the little box I’d put myself in.

What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?

Comparison is one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner. I’ve had the privilege of partnering with ridiculously talented people and have been let into the real, raw, and ugly sides of business ownership at massive scales, and it can be so easy to be drawn up into the “how come them and not me?” question, or the “There’s no way I could do that, so I’m not even going to consider it” lie, that’s prevented myself, and others, from taking some cool opportunities.

It’s been encouraging, though, to see so many leaders overcome the lie of disqualification and choose to go for it anyway (even if they “don’t have the right education,” or they “haven’t done this before” or they “don’t have the right connections to make that happen”). Whatever the excuse, the most successful people I know choose to move forward anyway, and they loop in support of trusted people to help them get out of their own way!

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

  1. PRIORITIZE PEOPLE OVER PROJECTS. Always. There will constantly be more projects to work on and tasks to do, but prioritizing people over projects will give you a much stronger ROI and more sustainable outcome.
  2. ASK. If you’re unsure about something, ask. If you don’t know how to get to where you want to go, ask. If you want to learn, ask. If you’re feeling stuck, ask. If you want an opportunity, ask. Far too many gifts go unopened simply because people don’t ask. Be audacious with your ask. Be persistent with your ask. Be purposeful and specific with your ask.
  3. KEEP GOING even when challenges arise, even when there isn’t a crystal clear path forward, and even when you feel like you’re going at it alone. Keep going, even then. Clarity, victory, and relational equity come through consistent action. Be flexible with the methods, knowing they may shift over time, and be determined with the goal.

Where can people find you and your business?


If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

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