We had the good fortune of connecting with Kelsey O’Brien and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Kelsey, have there been any changes in how you think about work-life balance?
Getting the work-life balance right is an art form. Though the idea of owning your own business, setting your own hours and having more flexibility sounds wonderful, the line is almost always gets blurry. It really does take a conscious effort to make sure those blurred lines don’t create problems for your family life and your sanity! As the work never ends when you are running a small business, it is harder than I realized it would be to “turn off” and check out at the end of a day. This is even more of an issue now that many of us are working from home. I have realized that setting hours as if I am clocking in and out is one of the ways that I can be sure not to encroach on family time. Another habit that has helped is to give myself more structure for the week, designating certain projects for certain days. When that day is done, the project is put on pause until the next time that has been carved out for continuing it. That is a system that works for me (when I stick to it!) but I imagine may not work for others. It’s all about finding what works best for you.

Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
Our business, MK Envision Galleries, is a photography gallery in Liberty Station representing San Diego landscape photographers. We are the only gallery in the area that exclusively works with photographers! We are fortunate to get to work with an extremely talented and humble group of photographers and we greatly enjoy introducing people to their work. Our drive and purpose is fueled knowing that each sale directly supports their passion to highlight the beauty of the world through the art of photography. One of our biggest challenges as a new business has been getting enough exposure to make up for the lack of foot traffic in our location. We have had to learn “on the fly” how to navigate online marketing and web presence strategies. Between graphic design, new marketing channels, content creation, online ad management and the list goes on, there has been a lot to learn. We are making strides towards building our online presence and hope that mkenvision.com can be the backbone supporting the gallery into the future!

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
There is so much to do in San Diego it’s hard to narrow it down! Here is a highlight reel of some of our favorite things to do: Walk around Little Italy at night when the lights are on and pick any restaurant for an amazing authentic Italian meal. Fish tacos in Mission Beach and walk the boardwalk Walk along Sunset Cliffs and get sushi at The Joint in Ocean Beach Check out the La Jolla Cove and tide pools Check out Balboa Park and pick up an iced coffee at the Prado Perk Torrey Pines hike for a panoramic ocean view Beers at Eppig Brewing and lunch at Mitch’s Seafood in Point Loma and then check out the Cabrillo National Monument Picnic on Coronado Beach and check out the Hotel Del Liberty Public Market for lunch in Liberty Station and walk around the grounds Brewery hopping in Mira Mesa Check out a concert at Humphrey’s by the Bay on Shelter Island Mexican food and margaritas at Casa Machado in Serra Mesa and watch airplanes take off Bahn Thai in North Park and find a bar afterwards to grab a cocktail Pizza at Buona Forchetta in South Park and walk around the neighborhood after Noodles at Rakiraki Ramen and Bing Haus for ice cream on Convoy Street

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?
I would like to give a shoutout to my husband, Kendall, and my business partner Michelle’s husband, Matt. Both of them have been 100% supportive and understanding throughout our business endeavors. They have built frames for us, put up walls in the gallery, been bartenders at gallery events and been our cheerleaders since Day 1. We are so fortunate to have them on our team as our other halves!

Website: mkenvision.com
Instagram: instagram.com/mk_envision
Facebook: facebook.com/mkenvision

Image Credits
Wanderlust Creative MK Envision Galleries

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