Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in mental wellness but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Kristen Jacobsen, Owner of Cathartic Space Counseling, located in Northbrook, IL, USA.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

I'm a psychotherapist in the Chicagoland area, and I started my practice, Cathartic Space Counseling, back in 2013. I help anxious perfectionists break free from people pleasing, self-sacrifice, and overthinking.

Tell us about yourself

I became interested in the field of psychology after taking an Abnormal Psychology course in college. I've always wondered what motivates people to do the things they do, and it's fascinating for me to try to connect the dots or put pieces of the puzzle together, so to speak. I always wanted to have my own practice, so I started that on the side while working at a psychiatric hospital back in 2013. Once I had enough clients, that became my full-time role for several years. Now I also teach as an adjunct Psychology professor, so I split my time between that and seeing clients. Things sort of came full circle, and now Abnormal Psychology is my favorite class to teach.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

I would say my biggest accomplishment has been to have a thriving practice for almost 10 years now. There have been some huge learning curves along the way, and I really had to step outside of my comfort zone to be resourceful and assertive. Being my own boss comes with its own challenges and requires a lot of self-discipline, but it also provides me with a sense of agency and independence.

What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?

I miss out on a lot of the perks that come with working in corporate America, such as good health insurance, 401K, PTO, etc. If I'm not working, I'm not making money. This has led to my next pursuit of developing an online course that will help yield some passive income.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

  1. Talk to anyone in your field who can give you tips, advice, resources, etc.
  2. Work on your mindset. This has a bigger effect on your business than you think.
  3. Stay informed about your financial health so you can make strategic business decisions.

Where can people find you and your business?


If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

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