MODERN PRIORITIES: SERENA GUEN OF SUITCASE MAGAZINE
It's never been as empowering to be a woman– but it's also never been as complicated. The modern, connected woman carries with her plenty of expectations. In this blog series, we take a peek into the digital habits and modern priorities of some of the power women we admire. They show us it's possible to do it all, live well and inspire others everyday.
Serena Guen is the Founder and CEO of SUITCASE Magazine. From a young age, Serena has actively chased her dreams. She even started her magazine from her New York University dorm room. Today, her magazine is read all over the world, inspiring a generation of trailblazers and nomads to explore far and wide.
What does your morning ritual look like?
Some kind of sport, breakfast of eggs or porridge with green tea, reading a book or a magazine and lots of moisturiser.
What apps or tools do you use to help you be on your A-game?
Hailo to get around – cab drivers can go in bus lanes and actually know where they’re going unlike certain people who will remain unnamed. I also carry a notebook around with me of varying sizes, it’s much more satisfying to write down ideas or tick off to do lists like that. It’s not very exciting but I like to keep things simple.
3 top tips for preparing for a busy day ahead?
Stay in bed for an extra moment and decide how you want that day to go, stand in warrior pose when you finally decide to brave it and get up, and finally eat breakfast otherwise you will get grumpy.
How do you make time to switch off from technology?
When I’m traveling it’s pretty easy. I’ve learned to take a picture of spectacular things that I see and then put my phone away. I think first, “Why do I need this photo? What will I do with it?” Regarding emails, I only check them about 4-5 times a day now rather than constantly and my productivity has gone up so much. I’m not going to change the world by writing emails.
How has social media helped you in your career?
Starting a Facebook page pre-launch helped create a brand and a readership that were ready to purchase the magazine when it came out. Small companies are really lucky that social media exists because it levels the playing ground enormously between us and bigger companies.
Do you feel like you portray who you really are online?
It depends where online. In my editorial pieces, yes. Facebook, kind of. On Instagram, no. People don’t want to see pictures of me in the office or even pictures of my friends, they only want to see me travelling to cool places.
What does the term 'digital balance' mean to you?
It means only using technology in ways that have a positive impact and enhance what you want to do rather than taking away from it. For example, using technology to increase communication between you and your friends who live abroad (skype calls) rather than sitting on your phone when you’re with friends at the table who you could be talking to.