We had the good fortune of connecting with Vivian Thwaits and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Vivian, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
My initial inspiration for creating Art Soul and Horses was to provide nurses with the tools to help support them in combating compassion fatigue and burn out. As I started on my own healing journey, I began to see the archetype of the “wounded healer” in both myself and my nurse colleagues. The “wounded healer” is a term created by psychologist Carl Jung. The idea is that those that go into the healing professions are drawn to do this work because they perhaps are themselves wounded. I saw a great need to offer support to this community and it was non-existent. I also wanted to create a business that fully embraced the idea that anyone can create a passion-driven and meaningful life.

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.
By the age of 47, I was very successful at being a nurse administrator. I got to that place in my career by working long hours, never saying no, not being home, not be present for my marriage and fully neglecting my body, mind and soul. I was a wreck! I do know this for sure…returning to self-love and self-compassion are the keys to personal transformation. I am also excited that this work has moved beyond the nursing profession and we (the horses and I) have been influential in helping others start on that journey to meaningful and passion filled lives. I know that I am the first nurse professional to combine horses and art to heal. I am always excited when I see my clients moving in the direction of their dreams. When they are able to leave their old stories on the arena floor and begin create new stories, that is what truly makes my heart sing with joy. When I was training for my Gestalt Certification I was on max overload but I also knew that I had a clear vision and plan in place for where I wanted my life to go. There is always power in clarity I knew that the long hours and travel and studying after work were not forever. I was motivated by this work and creating a business that I fully believed in. My greatest lesson to date is that…the people and experiences that cause our deepest pain can be our greatest teachers. My brand Art Soul and Horses is a testament to the power of self-love, compassion and the beauty of transformation. I think now more that ever nurses are in need of learning the powerful tools that self-love can offer them as they are asked to step up even more during this current pandemic. I know that they are probably suffering with very little support from the hosptial systems and clinics that employ them. I hope that I can be a light for others and I am so honored to be able to serve these dedicated professionals.

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?
We would start the week here at Art Soul and Horses Barn with the horses, playing and listening to music and cooking great meals. We would start by relaxing and enjoying this space. Next we would go to the coast…camping at San Elijo State beach, riding bikes along HWY 1 and eating delicious food at Seaside Market. I would definitely take them for an evening out in Downton San Diego… Noble Experiment for a drink and my absolute favor outdoor dining place is Island Prime on Harbor Island. Belly up for live music and Numerology Reading at Pam’s Place in Solana Beach. Also definitely an art class with Susan Wickstrand at Lux in Encinitas I still have not made it to Morning Glory in Little Italy so that is another must.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Soul Tribe Sister Rebecca @ Evolved Imagery she has been a creative partner in my business since the beginning. Soul Tribe (Noun) The people and animals in your life that help you understand the path you are on. They serve to inspire, create, transform and light the way on your journey. They are steadfast and true and ever-present forces of nature. They help you become more brave, more fearless and teach you to learn to embrace your gifts. I stand in reverence for this beautiful and creative soul Rebecca Kuritz

Website: www.artsoulandhorses.com
Instagram: artsoulandhorses
Facebook: Art Soul and Horses

Image Credits
photos by Rebecca@Evolvedimagery