Believe in Yourself

North Star Ranch, San Luis Obispo, CA

“Life is a mirror reflecting beauty and pain. Embrace the beauty. Let go of the pain.” – Catherine Grace O’Connell 

Did you know you have the power to shift your internal energy and watch the world around you change in an instant? I’ve got proof on film!

I will never forget the moment I experienced that power for myself. I was in San Luis Obispo, CA for my first Equine Therapy immersion weekend. What’s Equine Therapy? Basically, it’s therapy with a horse. The horse is used as a powerful tool to mirror your energy back to you in an instant. I had no idea the weekend that lay ahead was going to be one of the most life changing experiences of my life.

I found Koelle Simpson online. Koelle shared a ranch with Oprah’s buddy, Martha Beck, called North Star Ranch. Koelle was a true horse whisperer. I remember being surprised by how young she was. She exuded a quiet confidence. She looked like she had just walked out of a Ralph Lauren catalog. To watch her interact with horses was magical, mesmerizing, and mysterious.

There were 10 of us that weekend. We were led into a “round pen.” Koelle was in the center of the ring. We listened to her share her story. Each of us was asked to share our reason for being there and our intention for the weekend.

This particular weekend, Koelle brought in a pack of horses she had never worked with before. The challenge and uncertainty are much greater when there’s no existing connection between the horse and the trainer.

Each of us had our turn in the round pen. When it was my turn, I stood in the center of the ring. Energy and emotion began rushing through me. I opened my heart and shared some of my personal story. It wasn’t long before the tears came. I was in so … much … pain. I desperately wanted my life to change. I was about to understand that I truly held the keys to my freedom.

The gate to the pen opened and in came a horse that was absolutely out of control wild. The horse began frantically running around the ring. He was bucking, stamping, avoiding me, and clearly wanted to break free. There was no one else inside the pen but me and the horse. He outweighed me by 1500 pounds. No outward effort of mine had any effect on his demeanor.

As the horse raced frantically around the ring, Koelle looked at me and asked me what I wanted in that moment. I remember the faces of the women in my group. They looked terrified for me. I remember feeling strangely calm. I closed my eyes. I took a long deep breath. I told Koelle that I wanted the horse to come up to me in the center of the ring and cuddle with me. That was definitely a tall order that would require me to shift into a place of complete and total inner peace and stillness while visualizing my intention.

The pen became completely silent except for the horse that continued to run around the ring. I could feel Koelle’s confidence and I grounded myself firmly. I became fully present and centered within myself, standing in the center of the ring with my eyes closed. I could sense the horse’s energy calming down. The horse began slowing down. I was intently focusing on this horse walking up to me and coming up to nuzzle me.

It didn’t take long. Before I knew it, this magnificent animal was settling down. He began walking slowly around the ring. Koelle taught me how to focus my energy into my heart and to “hook” my heart energy into the heart energy of the horse. I remember the moment I hooked into the horse’s energy and he began walking right up to me. I continued to concentrate my energy and intention. I visualized the horse nuzzling into my neck, cuddling up to me. Before I knew it, there he was. I could feel his breath. I could sense his energy. He put his face right up to mine. The women in my group uttered a collective gasp. I was absolutely overwhelmed with joy.

This was one of the most important and empowering moments in my life.

In that moment, I learned the power of energy, intention, and visualization. I learned how to release fear and to shift my energy and my life in an instant. I have that power. You have that power. You don’t need a horse to experience that power. You just need to believe in yourself. Life is your mirror. Go rock it with Moxie.



Wow!! Incredibly powerful- thank you for this amazing post!!


Horses are such amazing creatures. They totally take our lead. I was on one of my horses once and she got spooked by several things all at once. I just settled into her, leaned over and told her she was going to be okay. She was such a wonderful mare and totally trusted me, as I did her.


What a fantastic story. Very moving and awesome in every way


Thank you, Eva. I wish everyone could share an experience like this. Once you experience the power of being able to control your energy from within and watching your world shift without, life isn’t ever the same again. I appreciate you!


So breathtakingly beautiful. I was already tearing up, and then the look on your face at the end…. Just wow.


Thank you sister. I did a much longer video for my masters project that I cannot seem to find. I will find it and share it as you can see how wild and out of control the horse is at the beginning. The women were terrified as he was crazy out of control. It was the most wonderful experience to understand how much power we have within ourselves to affect our outer world. Thank you for your love and support!


This is so amazing Catherine…thank you for sharing….both to bring awareness to the practice of equine therapy (which is incredible in itself) but also to bring a powerful example of how energy really is everything and we are the cause and everything around us the effect.

PS…the video is truly beautiful—the smile on your face at the end says it all:)


Thank you so much, Beth. I appreciate you sharing this on FB. Most don’t know that I was training to be an Equine therapist when I was hit by Lyme disease. It was Koelle’s workshop that changed my life and the direction I was heading. It was so powerful to understand how much we can change our lives from within. I’m an energy worker trained in a lot of modalities. Working with horses is so magical as they are a direct mirror. You can’t fool a horse and we can’t really fool ourselves either.


Energy is everything. As a former horse owner, they follow your energy. Always! Beautiful ❤️


I used to jump out of cars to pet horses on the side of the road growing up. Most don’t know that I was training to be an Equine therapist when I was hit by Lyme. It was this workshop that took me in that direction. It was so wonderful and magical.


I remember thinking that energy and thinking like this were baloney. But the older we get and the more we experience this, goes to show how amazing it can be!!
You are amazing


So did my daughter. She thought Mom was nuts. Now, she gets it. She’s experienced it for herself and is obsessed with understanding energy. It is based on science after all. It’s just physics, sister! Thank you for reading and watching…and your love and support!


Oh my stars! Oh Catherine! I’ve got tears splashing down on my laptop! That was beautiful! There is something in. you that makes everyone (including horses) know that you are not there to harm them, that you can be trusted and they are drawn to you! Just beautiful!


You get me every time with the Oh My Stars. Maybe a future Forever Fierce Equine retreat! Wouldn’t that be amazing!

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