We had the good fortune of connecting with Dr. Kim Van Dusen, LMFT, RPT and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Dr. Kim, has the Covid-19 Crisis affected your perspective on work-life balance?
Before Covid-19, I worked from home, so when the stay at home order was announced, I honestly didn’t think it was going to change my life all that much. I thought I would be less busy because I wouldn’t have the hustle and bustle of daily life. I was surprised to find out that staying home in quarantine was actually more busy for me. In addition to my part-time job working with children with Autism 30 hours a week and managing my blog and social media accounts, I added one more job to my plate, homeschooling. Instead of dropping off my daughter at school and putting my son down for his nap, I would have quiet time during the day to focus on work. But this wasn’t the case anymore. Days started becoming a blur and they all started running together. There was no work/home separation any more. Work was at home and home was at work. And I was never alone. And to top things off, my husband has been home full time, too, so there has been an entirely other human being around with expectations that I didn’t have before. Him being home added an entirely new component to balance that I didn’t not expect! And with both of my children at home with me full time, I have had to come up with more ways to entertain them for longer periods of time. Therefore, I have had to intentionally make more of an effort to have balance. I have had to actually schedule in time to be with everyone, get all of my work done, take care of things around the house, and try to squeeze time in for myself. I have had to compartmentalize my day into sections; parenting, work, school, chores, cooking meals, self care, and just fun time. It has definitely been harder to have a balance these days, but I think I am finally getting the hang of it!
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
It has taken a tremendous amount of time, money, dedication, determination, consistency, and effort to build my business. There are many layers and it all started with a dream and a passion for something big! I mixed my education, professional experience, and personal experience to blend into my brand. I combined having a Doctorate in Psychology, a Master’s in TV Broadcasting, previous experience in the sales, marketing, publicity world, being a parent, and wanting to be my own boss to create my brand. It took a lot for it to come to life and I am proud of how it’s grown and where it is today. It was certainly not easy, but when you love what you do, it doesn’t feel like work. You can easily forget the hard parts and only focus on the good ones. It took a lot of initiative, drive, networking, and an ability to keep relevant and growing. I’ve had to push through the challenges, the rejection, and the disappointment when there was a setback. I have had to have a thick skin and a healthy self image to keep going. You have to be authentic and unique and offer something that no one else can. There are a lot of mom bloggers and lifestyle influencers in the world, but I strive on being different. I can offer experience from my eclectic background and cover a wide range of topics in the world of media, travel, psychology, and parenting. I also love Disney, fashion, travel, and food – so those get mixed in my brand as well, since as a woman and human being, I genuinely love those things! I also have a Doctorate in Psychology, am a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, a Registered Play Therapist, and University Professor, and a Public Speaker, so I am an expert in what I do from a professional standpoint, not just a personal one, making me have more legitimacy and authority when I speak on particular topics. But I still have a long way to go. My goal is to have a podcast, a talk show, author a book, and travel the country speaking at conferences and being on television as well as incorporating more family travel into my blog, since that is one of my biggest passions of all!
Any great local spots you’d like to shoutout?
I love Southern California because there is so much to offer. I grew up in San Diego and besides loving it being my hometown, it is one of the most desired places to live and visit, and I couldn’t be more proud to live there. There is a so much to do and I love showing it off when my friends come to visit! I would definitely take my best friend to the beach and eat at some of my favorite local taco shops. We would also visit places like the Zoo, Coronado, Old Town, Seaport Village, Gaslamp, and then travel north to some of my favorite spots in North County and then onto Los Angeles. In all honesty, if I had a week, I may even drive up the coast and spend a day or two in San Francisco and Napa! If she brought her children, we would also visit places like the Safari Park, Legoland, Sea World, and Disneyland!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
No one can do anything alone. If it wasn’t for the inspiration of my children, the help of my husband, the support from friends, and the deep passion I have to build my business, I wouldn’t be where I am today!
Chrissy Walther Photography