Discover U Podcast with JD Kalmenson

Kate Neligan; What Horses Can Teach Us About Finding Balance

June 15, 2022 JD Kalmenson, CEO Montare Behavioral Health Season 2 Episode 11
Discover U Podcast with JD Kalmenson
Kate Neligan; What Horses Can Teach Us About Finding Balance
Show Notes Transcript

Montare Media presents Season 2, episode 11 of the Discover U Podcast: What Horses Can Teach Us About Finding Balance with Kate Neligan, MA

JD Kalmenson interviews Kate Neligan to learn about the fascinating field of equine coaching and equine therapy. How can working with horses bring us back into harmonious relationship with ourselves and others, mirroring patterns of behavior and being that come from wounded places in our psyches.  

Kat Neligan is an equine-partnered life and business coach, healer, and animal communicator whose life’s work is devoted to the human-animal bond. Kate pairs her intuitive gifts with those of horses (and goats too!) to help people gain greater clarity, confidence, and connection with their life purpose. She has a Master’s in Spiritual Psychology and is the creator of Awakening with Equines, a first-of-its kind certification program for equine-partnered facilitators. Kate has also been a five times best-selling author, TEDx speaker, corporate marketing VP, and Huffington Post writer.

In private equine coaching sessions and workshops around the country, Kate facilitates powerful transformation by helping high-performing women to navigate life transitions with more ease, presence, and flow. She also supports companies in developing mindful cultures and communication skills through team building and leadership retreats.

Host Kalmenson is the CEO/Founder of Renewal Health Group, a family of addiction treatment centers, and Montare Behavioral Health, a comprehensive brand of mental health treatment facilities in Southern California. Kalmenson is a Yale Chabad Scholar, a skilled facilitator, teacher, counselor, and speaker, who has provided chaplain services to prisons, local groups and remote villages throughout the world. His diverse experience as a rabbi, chaplain, and CEO has inspired his passion and deep understanding of the necessity for effective mental health treatment and long-term sobriety.
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JD Kalmenson: Welcome to another episode of Discover U, our podcast exploring innovative and effective solutions to issues in mental and behavioral health. I'm JD Kalmenson, CEO of Montare behavioral health, a family of dynamic and comprehensive mental health treatment centers in Southern California. I'm so honored and excited to introduce you to our wonderful guest today, Kate Neligan. Kate is an equine partnered life and business coach, healer, and animal communicator, whose life work is devoted to the human animal bond. Kate pairs her intuitive gifts with those of horses and goats to help people gain greater clarity, confidence, and connection to their life purpose. She has a Masters in spiritual psychology and is the creator of Awakening with Equines, a first of its kind certification program for equine partnered facilitators. Kate has also been a five times bestselling author, Ted Talk speaker, corporate marketing VP, and Huffington post writer. Welcome Kate. I am truly honored and grateful that you've taken the time to be with us today and share some knowledge on this fascinating and intriguing topic before we even begin. Can you tell us a little bit about how you got interested in working with horses? 

Kate Neligan: So I've loved horses since I was a kid, and I grew up riding my whole life. I went to summer camp. I competed in college. We did intercollegiate riding of walk, trot, canter. And then I started to lease a horse as an adult, and we were at a facility that was doing equine therapy with addicts and rehab and recovery. And so I started to learn from my first mentor, what that process was like. And then just completely fell in love with the transformation I was witnessing in just a couple hours. 

JD Kalmenson: Amazing. And my understanding is that your involvement is with equine partnered coaching, is that different from equine therapy? 

Kate Neligan: It is different. So it's interesting because the nomenclature is changing quite a bit in this phase. And so traditionally there's equine assisted psychotherapy and you need the licensure to be in that space, doing therapy. And then there's another space called equine assisted learning, which is where educators can come in and teach kids life skills. Coaches can come in and do life coaching with horses. So we are really staying in what I would call either the mindfulness space of helping people get present or is coaches planning for the future and not really focused on the therapy side, which is sometimes really about healing the past. 

JD Kalmenson: Hmm. So to perform equine therapy, you have to have a traditional degree as a therapist, a master's in psychology. 

Kate Neligan: Yes. And that said a lot of people use the term equine therapy as just a generic. What people know it as. So people have called me an equine therapist before, and I often let them know I'm actually a coach cuz I really find that that therapy title is very important for those who've done that training. I have my Masters in spiritual psychology, which set me up to be an amazing coach and I've done a lot of other training since then. I have a certification in equine experiential education. So I can work with people in like the kinesthetic experiential learning. 

JD Kalmenson: Sure. So I love the line that you said a moment ago that equine therapy is sometimes that, the therapist will utilize the intervention with the horse in terms of dealing with the past, as opposed to the work that you do as an equine coach has more to do with mindfulness and helping them become grounded in the present. Maybe you could just tell us exactly what the intervention looks like. And we can talk about both equine therapy as well as equine coaching. What is it actually? Is it, is it riding, is it tending to the horse? For the layman, what is it all about?  

Kate Neligan: Well I think of equine assisted psychotherapy as often sometimes taking the office, the therapy office, bringing it to a ranch or a barn. Sometimes you're just working with a client outside of a round pen, watching what's going on with the horses. You may be doing some engagement, but it's really a therapist with a partner of a horse that highlights other things that are going on with the client. When you start looking at equine assisted learning and coaching, we are doing in my mind like practicing ways of being that you can embody in real time. So we're talking about those emotional intelligence skills, like building trust, building compassion. And so it's a very kind of different space. We are all on the ground and then there's a whole nother category called therapeutic riding, which is used to kind of be known as hippotherapy where people often autism, um, disabled are on the backs of horses and they're learning motor skills. And um, it's a, it's a very different experience. 

JD Kalmenson: Sure. So the tending to the horses, what type of mental health conditions would that be effective for? And you mentioned addiction. How does it help for addiction? I know that's, those are two separate questions, but if you can, uh, you could start with either of them. What, how, how does it, how does it actually help? 

Kate Neligan: Yeah. So when I first witnessed was working with the addicts and what I saw was that they would come for two hours once a week and they weren't really necessarily in their bodies. They were, didn't have a lot of hope. They were really going through a lot of challenges and transition, and the horses because they're 1200-pound prey animals help people get present really quick. The horses have five times the size of our hearts. So you're in that electric magnetic field of the heart, which if you, you know, look at Heartmath, there's all the coherence that happens. So you're in a very different space then you would be, you know, in a therapy office, so to speak. And then what happens in like the assisted learning space is we are working often, at least myself with more high performing individuals. Like I will work with corporate teams on mindfulness and communication, or I’ll work with women going through divorce. And they're really working on self- love and self-care, more of those kind of intangible soft skills that are not necessarily associated with any type of diagnosis, right. That you would see in the therapy space. 

JD Kalmenson: You referenced heart coherence. Would you be able to elaborate on that a little bit? 

Kate Neligan: Yeah. So what happens with the horses because of the size of their hearts is our heart rate changes and the heart rate variability. And we can, when we're in states of coherence, we're in, which is really this regulation of the heart space and the breathing and the body, we can have creativity, we can have insight, we can have healing happen because we're in the parasympathetic. And so what's really, I'll have people put their hand up on a horse's heart and one on theirs just create like an infinity loop between and really start to feel into that space. Because so often we don't take moments and pause and actually connect with our own hearts, which is one of our brains. And there's a lot of intelligence now that we understand through heart math and their science and their research about what the heart's actually doing and how important it is. 

JD Kalmenson: Absolutely. I mean, so much of human ills and behavioral challenges have to do with an inability to openly feel our feelings or acknowledge them or consciously, uh, sort of, uh, see them. And, and that, that makes so much sense, but it's amazing how that happens on a very physiological level. Is that energetic or is it, or is it even physiological touching the horse's heart? 

Kate Neligan: Yeah, I believe it's both. I have not studied the physiological part as much, but I feel the energy and the frequency of the horses and because they live in this relaxed alertness space for so much of their time, if they're in a stall, they're not grazing, they're meditating with other horses. And if they're out on a pasture, they're grazing with their heads down. So, you know, their guts are huge, right? That's another huge piece that we, and they have four feet on the ground. So I'll ask people, can you feel as grounded with two legs the way a horse does with four and what is possible when you tap into that heart space and allow it to, to grow bigger the way the horses is. So I do think it's energetic and physiological. I just don't think we have enough information on it yet. 

What we do have information on is the human animal bond research Institute. They've done it a little bit more with cats and dogs and pets, but they have some on horses and just brushing or petting an animal for a certain amount of time can start to really lower cortisol, you know, and then riding they've shown that it can, you know, movement of hips increases the serotonin. So there is a lot that can naturally happen with blood pressure and heart rate variability when you are slowing down and becoming present with a 1200-pound, you know, prey animal.

JD Kalmenson: So what you're saying is that equine coaching is really just for optimization self-help and really enhancing some of the character traits that we'd like to, that we'd like to embody. 

Kate Neligan: I see it as personal and professional growth. That is a very embodied way of learning. So you and I could talk about leadership, but until you actually take a halter and a lead rope and you bring a 1200 pound prey animal with you as a predator, you actually don't know what is going on with your body and leadership. Right? And so much of communication is body language. So we learn so much about ourselves in the act of doing. And what we often say is how you do one thing is how you might do anything. So essentially what's happening is your way of being, your behaviors, and your thoughts are getting illuminated really quickly when you're with a horse. 

JD Kalmenson: Could you share with us what a session or a memorable powerful session might look like?

Kate Neligan: Yeah. So my job as facilitator and coach is to be an interpreter and really a bridge between what the horse is doing and showing and what the client is experiencing. And there are times because I always work with my intuition. I’m able to hear the horses and I've had training in animal communication. I'm able to bring through some of their messages and some of the wisdom of what I feel like they're saying to a client or what they're doing. So for instance, a horse that wants you to get more grounded, and this happens to me all the time. They might actually, um, go and tap your sit bones, right? Hey, focus on that. Right. And, or even back their behind, slightly up to you so that you can start to lean back over their hind and really get grounded. 

Uh there's you know, a lot in the somatic of not just being with them, but also touching them and having them touch us that can, that can really do deep work for people. And I do believe they're doing energy work. So sometimes people just want to pet a head and I'm like, can you take a moment and actually just open up your arms and receive. And breathe and see if you can feel what that horse is actually contributing to you from one energy being right to you. Cause it is about energy and it is about energy intelligence in addition to emotional intelligence. 

JD Kalmenson: Wow. That's, that's extraordinary because that really highlights how intuitive and how integral their engagement and participation in the process is it's not just a, you know, an animal to have a relationship with, but they're actually intuitively guiding the direction of, of the treatment as it were. Wow. 

Kate Neligan: They seem to know what a client needs, even if we don't. And so that's why I'm always teaching other coaches, can you listen to them at a deeper level? Can you go like, can we not make assumptions right away that we know what's happening? Can we be curious? So often a question we do ask as coaches is what are you noticing or feeling with the client and the horse? And the client will say, oh, this reminds me of my dad and how he treats me, boom we're into a conversation. Or, um, actually, this is how I feel right now in my life. I can't, I can't make anything happen. I can't actually get this horse to move. And all of a sudden there's a lot of self-esteem issues. And so we're processing that. So I think what happens is I kind of, you know, essentially I'm able to be a really strong bridge cuz of how much I love horses and how well I know them and how much I've studied them. And I'm around them. I'm able to be a really strong bridge between what the horse is presenting, what the client's presenting and then to actually form like the deep connections that creates healing and awareness from that, 

JD Kalmenson: That's amazing. And being that you do this quite often, it, it would be safe to assume that the horse by now knows that you're the coach and not the client. In other words, you know, it's, it's, it's not sending you messages. It's, it's focusing on the client. 

Kate Neligan: It depends. <laugh> it depends if there's a day when I need grounding, as much as the client they'll come over and be like, yeah, you need grounding too. You're both getting grounded. 

JD Kalmenson: That’s funny. Equal opportunity healer. I love that.

Kate Neligan: Completely. Yeah. And I love sometimes to also just turn it completely over to the horse, walk away for a bit and let the client have their own one-on-one experience without me around with the horse. So that way their own intuition starts to bubble to the surface. And they're like, I feel like the horse is telling me it's going to be okay. And I'm like, that's exactly right. Wow. It is going to be like, it is going to be okay. So they're starting to hear messages or feel messages from the horses cuz the horses, some of them in particular have a really amazing way of being able to get right through to us. Right. They cut through, we often call them biofeedback machines. They're not obviously, but they have that energy of being able to represent what's going on really quickly. So like some horses will start fighting that normally don't fight because there's fighting going on in that parent, in that parent's house that they actually need to talk about. 

Right. Or a horse ignoring them, but is not ignoring another client. If we have a group and then it's like conversations, what is that about? What is that reminding you of, why are you being ignored this other, right. So there's so much good information. And even in a group you can learn from someone else's process. Cuz also as you face fear with a horse, you can bring that back to the rest of your life and face, fear elsewhere. And then we get really inspired and empowered watching other people do that because then we learn that we can do the same. 

JD Kalmenson: There's an emotional bond that is forged between the client and the horse. And especially for somebody who's had trauma, let's say related to a certain relationship, this is really sort of a healthy oasis, uh, a strong contrast and something to, to build off of how many sessions does a typical, uh, you know, equine intervention look like both therapeutically as well as coaching. 

Kate Neligan: Yeah, I think it depends on the issue and someone's ability to change and grow. I have seen massive change in one session with a client who literally changed her life. And then she came back for like three more. I've also seen, you know, one like full day retreat or workshop for a company create massive shifts and communication style. So they have an action plan to go back to their team with. And, you know, if you're working on something like, uh, you know, a lot of trauma or, you know, deep depression, in the therapy space, you are looking at consistent sessions. And I know in the therapeutic riding space, they often go weekly. So it's really based… I don't have like a prescription, so to speak of how often people need to come. I just like to meet people where they're at based on what I think they need and how they're responding to it and the horse. And once they have a relationship with the horse, they often do want to come back frequently. 

JD Kalmenson: Sure. And that makes sense. I mean, the talk, let's talk for a second about the horse. Is there something unique about that animal that lends itself to such therapeutic value as far as the, you know, the connection and the bond that’s unique about a horse, more so than other animals? 

Kate Neligan: Yeah, I think so. I think there's a few things. One, the heart that I mentioned before being so large two, the fact that they are, 

JD Kalmenson: That's a, that's a very physiological phenomenon.  Right. So I'm sure there are other animals, maybe not domesticated, that have a similar size of a heart. So technically they, you know, they would have that same effect. 

Kate Neligan: So I've heard, and I do not have direct experience with this, although I'd love to, that elephants and whale are also incredibly powerful in this space of healing people because of the size of their being body and hearts. Um, so I've heard that they can do similar type of like deep healing. We can get into the conversation of the fact that I believe it's energy work, right. Because their energy and their frequency, I mean, horses spend the majority of their life meditating. If we spend the majority of our life meditating, we would be different facilitators as well. Right. So there's that piece. There's also the fact that you have, 

JD Kalmenson: Sorry to interrupt. What do you mean by, by the fact that they spend the majority of their lives meditating? Do you mean technically they're in, in, you know, in a solitary position and they're, you know, they're sort of, uh, wrapped up in their thoughts? 

Kate Neligan: So all animals are living in the present moment. But horses in particular because of being prey animals, and, you know, they could constantly be in fight flight or freeze, but they're not. They're in a state of what I call relaxed alertness, which is they lift their head and look at something. If they think it's a, it's an issue. And then they go back to grazing. So they kind of ride between the worlds in my mind of like this real 3d reality and this higher realm. If I was to use that of consciousness, you can watch them when they're not sleeping. They're in this space of deep meditation where their eyes blink. They're very relaxed. They're just a very regulated, nervous system. And then people immediately like, well, that is so calming. Horses are so calm and they, you know, they're surprised by it. And then they're like, I want to be more calm. And that helps all of us cuz we live in somewhat of a stressful society. 

JD Kalmenson: So powerful that I never really thought about it like that, that their nervous systems are so regulated and there is such a degree of relaxation with them. They just look very Zen. Um, is there any component of the fact that, you know, like with dogs, there's just a very strong bond between rider and, and, and horse or owner and horse or whatnot?

Kate Neligan: Yeah. I think the difference with dogs is that we've domesticated them, and they live in our homes and we're both predator animals. If you were to look at it from the physiology, but ultimately with horses, they don't live in our space. And sometimes that could be that novelty, that people are often a little fearful or intimidated by them. So they're immediately getting outside of their comfort zone sometimes just even walking into an arena with one of them. Then there's the whole piece of the fact that, uh, they've evolved next to us for so long, right? Transportation, war, entertainment, friendship, like there's so much that they've, co-evolved through our, history with us even more so than dogs, dogs have been our companions, but horses have been like literally our partners in all the things we've had to do. 

JD Kalmenson: Hmm. Especially when travel was predicated on horses, you know. You literally couldn't go anywhere without 'em. 

Kate Neligan: Right. 

JD Kalmenson: Are certain breeds more conducive to coaching and therapy work than other breeds. 

Kate Neligan: Yeah. I love this. I think that that is, I've worked with so many different breeds and I have experienced them all to be different in what they teach. Right? Like an Icelandic breed is very calm and they're very chill and they, they teach people that, whereas an Arabian might be very, um, engaged and smart and quick. And so they're teaching a different type of, of energy. It's the whole, you know, type A versus, uh, like what I feel like I've recovered from a type A to type B, type B plus. So you get the different energies from the different breeds. I don't think there's anyone that's better than others. I have worked a lot with thoroughbreds, and I love them. I find that they're incredibly sensitive because they were trained for the track, and they've been around humans since they were born. So they are, they're an interesting type of breed, I think. Uh, but no, there's not really any breeds that I think are better than others, 

JD Kalmenson: But would you say, you know, the same way you have different modalities of talk therapy, for example, CBT, or DBT and then ultimately the actual therapist plays an enormous role, their empathy, their insight, their engagement will play an enormous role as far as how impactful and effective the therapy will be with the client, notwithstanding the fact that ultimately the client has to do the work themselves, but the nature disposition of the therapist plays an enormous role. Would you say the same things with the horse that the specific temperament of the horse can have a dramatic impact on whether this equine coaching or therapy will be wildly successful or moderately successful? 

Kate Neligan: I think though how much the horse enjoys it is a piece of it, right? So I've worked with horses that don't necessarily want to do it. And I love to give them choice and freedom so that they can walk away. And then horses that love it. Like, it feels like they're shining in their life purpose the way there are some of us who maybe, you know, they've been therapists for 20 years and they want to do something else, but they're still seeing clients and they're kind of done with it. You feel that energy versus ones who are like, I would do this no matter what, right. Whether I paid or not, I love it so much. So there's a piece of if their purpose is there, I have a horse who loves to do this work will always show up no matter what. And another one that picks her clients, she's like, oh, that person, I don't know if I want to work with them and she'll walk away. And then the people she really wants to teach and work with, she's like right there, she's like, she even tells the other horse, Hey, get outta here. I want this client. So it's fun to watch them and see how they are definitely individual sentient beings like we are. 

JD Kalmenson: How amazing, I mean, you taught, you have your, the certification for the coaching. You might want to have a certification for the horses. <laugh>, you know, 

Kate Neligan: Well, so part of the certification is actually teaching people how the horses are working and how to better partner with them. Because some of the old certification programs, they're all human centric. And I really feel like the horses are our equals in this process and we do need to work better with them as partners. 

JD Kalmenson: Yes. You know, this reminds me of a story with one of our early clients in the very beginning, when we started with our chemical dependency rehabilitation programs. And, um, at the time we weren't offering equine therapy, but this individual really had a love for horses. And he asked us if we can facilitate that. So we took him to a horse-riding facility and once, twice, and then I remember asking him, “Hey, how's it going? Do you like it?“ He says, I really appreciate that you're going through this for me, and you're taking me here, but it's not really doing it for me. I said, why? He's like, “well, for me, it's about the relationship and going to these horse riding places where every time I get a new horse, it's like a one-night stand.” Those were his words. <laugh>. So he made it very clear that the relationship with the horse was at the cornerstone of the therapeutic benefit that he was looking to obtain that was going to provide some healing and help for him in the domain of addiction. Does, does that resonate with you that, that sort of thinking? 

Kate Neligan: I think what happens with horses is that people feel so seen by them, right? Their eyes are really big. They get right in our faces. They are very much in our, um, you know, in our space, you can't ignore them. And people feel like loved at a deep level sometimes for the first time, if they didn't have a parent that loved them unconditionally. Right. Which is a lot of people, unfortunately. So I think it's really powerful and that bond is amazing. And when I go back to Los Angeles and I serve clients, I have a few that I work with that I'm like pick, you know, pick the one you want to come. And some people want to learn from new horses and a lot are like, oh, I need to get back to that one that you have and, you know, thousand Oaks. So it's, it's kind of neat to see that people do, uh, form the bonds and relationships with them. 

JD Kalmenson: And one of the things personally, I love about a specific horse that I interact with is that, you know, he'll just always come up for affection. There's no inhibitedness, there's no qualms about being vulnerable about, you know, just, engaging in a way without any sort of conscious filtering. 

Are there any downsides or dangers that you've had with a client who, uh, startled or scared a horse and is there anything to be wary of anything to be careful of? 

Kate Neligan: So I always do a safety demo when people come because most people don't know horses and even I know horses and stuff can still happen. I find because we're often doing really gentle things with them. We're not, you know, I'm not forcing them to run around and around a pen like some of the programs I've seen, it's really simple stuff. Sometimes if you look at it, it looks like we're just talking with them or we're meditating, 
or, you know, we're receiving from their energy and their messages. So it's very gentle and very different than riding, right. And some of the other, like things that we're doing with horses where there's more power over, this is really a humbled space that people get into where the horse actually has a lot of choice to come up into your space. And so it is that and humility. So I think it's more just, people need to sometimes be ready to cry, cuz it can happen right away. It can happen before you get out of the car. <laugh> 

JD Kalmenson: So wow. If you couldn't choose a horse, is there any other animal that has similar characteristics or properties that you would utilize for coaching and therapy? 

Kate Neligan: Yeah. Someday I would love to play with dolphins and whales, but for now I actually work with goats also and I love them and they're so incredible. They are smaller. They people get on the ground with them, they start, you know, brushing them and petting them. They love to be scratched. They also have very unique eyes. So people are immediately drawn into their senses, like the physical touch and the seeing and the smelling and all of these things. So when we're drawn into our basic senses, then we also can start to activate intuition and they get down lower on the ground. And so it is that I think of it as that kind of humble space and inner child space. Sometimes then they go out with the horses and it's really pretty powerful. So I find the goats are incredible. The goats teach a lot of interesting things that are different from the horses, like curiosity, cuz goats will get into like a lot of things and they're very friendly. I work with Nigerians dwarfs and they're just playful and it's so novel for people that it just kind of dismantles all of the ego and all of the head space for a while. 

JD Kalmenson: And they do have that sagely Freudian look with those beards. 

Kate Neligan: Oh gosh. Yeah. They're so wild. Like they're the weirdest awesomest creatures.

JD Kalmenson: The other day I was at the zoo. It wasn't a zoo, it was like a farm and my son was really excited because one of the goats had a bigger beard than I have. So he was, he, he had that's awesome. He had seen it. 

JD Kalmenson: What would you like to see in the future for equine partner coaching and equine therapy? 

Kate Neligan: I would love to see it become mainstream, like to the point where we didn't always talk about yoga. We didn't talk about meditation and now they just help people so much with mindfulness, with embodiment practices, with feeling better. And I think we're in a society right now that we truly do need to feel better to actually choose better and make better conscious choices for each other and ourselves. So the horses will always say follow what feels good. They don't think their way through things. Their brains are different from ours, right? So they are not thinking beings, they're feeling beings. And so to your point, that's all they see with us too, is their congruency in our actions cuz their safety relies on our integrity and our congruence. So I always say they return us to our innocence, right. They return us to that original spark that was here when we were kids that we can get back in touch with and play and feel good. And, and you know, they're a herd culture. They take care of each other. They have a hierarchy that makes sense that we can learn from in our culture as well. 

JD Kalmenson: That's so beautiful. Uh, both, uh, components of what you said. I mean, we talk about it a lot in, at our treatment centers at Renewal and at Montare. The name renewal says it all itself, that healing is not necessarily superimposing a new identity, a new phenomenon, new reality. But what it really is, is really excavating that sort of inner spirit of hope and healing of wellness, of optimization of integrity. That really was always there, but sometimes gets sullied and muddied. And then we define ourselves based on the obstruction and based on the confusion and that paints and taints us. And then what the process of healing is, you know, like you're saying with the horse, it's really about getting back to that stage of innocence, that pristine sort of foundation that, that really is there. And I love that and I, I do hope that your vision comes to fruition and that it becomes a household topic.

Kate Neligan: Maybe isn't a fit for everyone, but it is for a lot more people than I think we're currently serving it is growing. But we have a thing from our master's program too in spiritual psychology, which is healing is the application of loving to the places inside that hurt. And that's really, all the horses are doing is loving the heck out of us. And people are like, why do you always say they're unconditionally loving? How do you know? And I'm like, because they walk up and do things that we always say, you could never make it up. Like their timing, their intuition, their congruency is at a whole nother level than I've seen in any animal or any being on the planet be they're almost like those ancient Yogi masters. Right. <laugh> so it's really just intense for people and, and also really joyful and beautiful and fun to watch it because they're just really loving us back into wholeness. 

JD Kalmenson: That's amazing. Wow. Thank you so much, Kate, for allowing us a view into this really powerful, beautiful world of equine therapy, equine coaching. So great to have you with us today and thank you for taking the time. How can people find out more about you and the work that you do? 

Kate Neligan: Sure. Thanks so much for having me. I'm so grateful to always share the voice of the horses and this work. Cause I would love it out there in the world in a big way. I and uh, on the social media. It's Kate Neligan equine coach on Instagram and Facebook and then I have a group for horse lovers on Facebook called awakening with equines. You can definitely reach out to me through the website. 

JD Kalmenson: Amazing. And thank you so much audience for joining us too. I hope you enjoy today's episode of Discover U. At Montare always want you to know that you're not alone on your journey. To find out more about our innovative treatment programs, you can find us at, and you can listen to our Discover U podcast on iTunes, Spotify, or wherever you get your podcasts, wishing you all great health and a safe and inspiring day. See you next time.