We had the good fortune of connecting with Heather Ryan and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Heather, can you share a quote or affirmation with us?
My favorite quote is “Choose love, not fear.” I’m not sure who originally said it, but I think about this every single day. (I even asked my sister create an art print of this quote, which now hangs on my wall!) I love it because it’s so simple.
Everything we do in life, every decision we make, can come from a place of love or a place of fear. Do I choose to step out of my comfort zone and love myself enough to learn and grow? Or do I choose to be afraid, stay in the safety of what I know, but never expand or try something new?
There have been times in my life when I let fear guide my decisions. I was “comfortable” but I was also stagnant and unhappy. I was afraid of failure, afraid of rejection, afraid of doing it wrong. But then I started choosing love. I made the decision to believe in myself, love myself, and push the fear away. Yes, I may get it wrong, but I can always try again. I don’t want to live a life of regret. Fear is temporary but regret is forever. You can ask yourself “What if I fail?” but you can also ask yourself “What if I succeed?”
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I think my career path is really unique in that I’m both a professional actress AND a professional organizer…and I’m so grateful to have found TWO careers that I’m so passionate about!
I love that acting allows me to tell stories that matter, make people laugh, allow them to cry, make them feel something. And I love that I can make a difference in my organizing clients’ lives by helping them minimize their clutter and make space for the things that are truly important to them.
But no matter what my title is, at the end of the day, my calling is to help others in any way that I can with the talents I was given. If we could all just support each other, give a hug, lend a hand, offer a shoulder to cry on…I think this life would be just a little bit easier, don’t you?
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
This is tough because LA has so much to offer! I might take them camping (or wine tasting!) in Malibu, hiking in Griffith Park, vintage shopping in Magnolia Park, treasure hunting at a flea market like Melrose Trading Post or the Rose Bowl, or maybe even take a quick road trip to Solvang, Big Bear, Joshua Tree or Palm Springs. There are so many day trips just outside LA it’s incredible! Or we could check out one of the awesome outdoor movies that happen all over town! Yes, let’s do that! As for dining out, my only “must-go-to” place is Salsa & Beer in North Hollywood…don’t get me started on their bean dip!
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Oh gosh, where do I begin?! I am so grateful to have an incredible group of friends (you know who you are) and a supportive family back home in Wisconsin, especially my two sisters Angie and Colleen. Plus, my 9 nieces and nephews inspire me to keep pushing for success…I don’t think they realize how much their belief in me fuels me.
On the acting front, I have to credit my cousin/friend/creative partner Stephanie Greenquist-Marlett for being a huge inspiration and for repeatedly “nudging me” to move to Los Angeles years ago. From starting a childhood lemonade/coffee stand to starting a feature film project together, she’s been an epic wing-woman. I also want to give a shoutout to the talented Douglas Olsson. We did improv together in SF years ago, and now in LA he’s been a huge support by recommending teachers and classes, helping me tape auditions, inviting me to act in several of his hilarious sketches, and just being an all-around swell guy.
As for home organizing, I have to thank Lili Pettit for being an incredible mentor and colleague. We met at a crossroads in each of our lives and I’m grateful for the knowledge she imparted and the support she’s given me. Oh…and Marie Kondo! Her book “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up” taught me so much and opened my eyes to the world of professional organizing!
Kate Bunny Hampson