I am a pediatric psychologist, which means I work in a Children’s Hospital and help children with chronic medical illness, as well as with unique mental health difficulties. For example, Tourette’s Disorder, OCD, chronic pain, severe anxiety.
2: What is your biggest life lesson?
I have 2. Be kind to others. Take advantage of opportunities coming your way.
3: What is your biggest achievement?
I am most proud of my children. I have worked very hard to be a good parent. They are smart, kind, and admired by their teachers. I have a 15 y.o. son and a 13 y.o. daughter.
4: What is currently the most challenging part of running your business?
Time! I never have enough time to do all the thing I want to do. I work a demanding job as a psychologist and three years ago I became an author, so time is a huge factor, especially when you balance parenting teens as well. I am chronically sleep-deprived.
5: What was the biggest hurdle you had to overcome to get where you are now?
I am not a native English-speaker. I was born in Ukraine. I came to the US at the age of 17. Getting my Ph.D. in Psychology was a huge challenge due to language. Being an author is a huge challenge due to English not being my first language.
6: What is your favorite book?
Jane Eyre is my favorite classic. Outlander is a book I often reread as Diana Gabaldon has such beautiful writing and I love time-travel. One Plus One by JoJo Moyes is a book I reread once a year because it makes me feel ridiculously happy.
7: If you could have anyone educate you who would it be?
Margaret Atwood—I wish she could teach me writing J
8: What is your deepest regret?
Not starting to write sooner. I was hesitant to write because my English wasn’t perfect. I waited too long.
9: What is your favorite podcast?
10: How people can get in contact with you?
I love being on social media. I am always on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram. I have a website www.elenamikalsen.com
11: What is your YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter accounts?
I am not on YouTube, but I am on Facebook as Elena Mikalsen Author, on Instagram as Mikalsen.writer and on Twitter as @WF_writerEM
12: Who inspires you on social media and why?
Anyone who is reasonable and doesn’t join the mob mentality. I follow many accounts and I can’t say I have one favorite, but anyone who says intelligent things and doesn’t jump to conclusions gets a retweet. I am a big fan of Dan Rather.
13: What is your favorite tech tool that you use in the your business?
My Apple laptop
14: How would you help people with disabilities?
I work with people with disabilities every day. I am treating a child with cerebral palsy right now. He is suffering from intense anxiety while having medical issues in the hospital. I am fighting with the medical team to help recognize him as a normal teen rather than a person who is just his illness.
15: What is the hardest part of your job that you have to face everyday?
Not enough resources for the families I work with. Stigma of mental illness. Not enough time to do the things I want to do. Not being able to bring enough attention to issues I care about. I just wrote a book about a rape victim and I can’t get an agent interested in it.