We had the good fortune of connecting with Chelley Collins-Anderson, LCSW and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Chelley, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
I’ve always been in helping professions and as time went on I became more and more aware of the microaggressions, stigma and lack of true concern towards minorities in the mental health space and it really encouraged me to want to be a change agent and create a space where the needs of our community could be met without shame and guilt. I was pushed to start my own business after a challenging situation in the corporate field and it really showed me that the way to make true change was to work for myself. I actually didn’t have a concrete plan of how I was going to do things but I knew that I needed to step out on faith and make it happen. I quit my job in the middle of the week and things fell into place for me to go full time with my own practice while also doing some contract work as I built up my clientele.

What should our readers know about your business?
I’m most proud of myself for not being afraid to figure it out as I go. The reality is that there is no perfect way to run a business and we aren’t going to know everything or do everything the right way the first time. I pride myself on being authentic and I have a created a business that allows my clients to show up genuinely and focus on their progress and not how they present or how they speak. I don’t code switch in my sessions. I don’t police my client’s thoughts or language. I focus on their needs and lock in on helping them in the ways that they need it and receive it the best. Being a mental health therapist and having a private practice is not easy at all because as you are helping others manage their mental health life is still happening for me as well and sometimes I may be mentally in the same boat as my clients. But I remind them and myself that I’m human and although I work in this field I’m not exempt from life lifeing but its my life experiences along with my education that allows me to be relatable and help people in our community feel seen and heard.

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I would definitely take them to Fuel City for the tacos, American Airline Center for a game, White Rock lake for a picnic to just chill, the Dallas Muesum of Art for some great conversation, and of course a brunch with a banging DJ to finish out the trip and give all the vibes.

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?
My support system has come from my family, colleagues, social work supervisor, and my therapist. My business was born while still working my former job and I would run my ideas, logos, social media photos, etc. by my close peers in our small little office space and they gave me that additional support, suggestions, and push to make things happen despite my need to have things perfectly in place before making a move forward. So, a special thank you to April, Narrissa, and Octavia for listening to my random thoughts, ridiculous questions of the day, and giving me a space to process and dream! A thank you to Andrea for being my personal photographer, hype woman, and best friend. And a big thank you to my husband and children because, I just told my husband my thoughts of quitting and he trusted my plan and vision and allowed me jump in full force and my children have always been my motivation for going harder and doing more!

Website: www.daboftherapy.com

Instagram: Dab of Therapy

Other: Email: Daboftherapy@gmail.com

Image Credits
Photographer: Andrea Kirk Instagram: Dreasvision

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