Kelly Jones NL-EP, SEP In Training, Founder
As a little girl growing up in a big city in East Texas, my love for horses was a bit of a surprise to my parents! No one in recent memory had connections to horses, and so my passion bloomed as a two-year old when my great grandfather set me up on top of his retired plow horse. I rode every horse anyone would let me ride, including working at a riding stable and earning riding lessons at age 7. I would hang out at the stables when my family went on vacations in Colorado, just just to be with the horses, and feeling right at home.
I think those early experiences really were one of the anchors that I would rely on when I felt misunderstood growing up and even as a young adult, making my way through a career in fashion design. Intuitively I could recognize when people were not what they seemed, and it was difficult to navigate this Western culture, built on creating value based on achievement.
And then I had my beautiful daughter, then my son, and everything changed. This reconnection to myself and my heart through unconditional love was a turning point in my life. I found courage to explore who I was and had the good fortune of buying a farm near Austin, Texas in 1999 and owning my own horses, plus taking care of other people’s beloved partners. This experience in taking care of so many horses, teaching riding lessons, leading horsemanship seminars, directing summer camps and rehabbing horses that had been neglected and traumatized, gave me a passion and desire to connect horses and humans while learning about the intricacies of equine behavior.
I identified that the horse’s ability teach humans how to be present and breathe, was truly a gift. Their beautiful way of communicating creates a conduit in which people can confidently and fearlessly explore how to reconnect back to their true vitality, life force, essence and strength.
I am a nature-based mindfulness coach, somatic experiencing practitioner-in-training, retreat leader and mentor to other practitioners and healers. I have my certification through the Natural Lifemanship Institute, which I started in 2013, interning with the founder, Tim Jobe, and learning about equine assisted mental health and equine assisted experiential learning. I have worked with 14 different licensed professionals and completed Leif Hallberg’s Masterclass in 2020.
I work through a trauma-informed lens, integrating nature, movement, equine-assisted learning, somatic experiencing, mindfulness, music, and expressive art into helping people identify emotional patterns that are damaging their quality of life and relationships, and shift those patterns. My primary population is women ages 40+ who are struggling with a sense of identity, oftentimes feeling stuck and overwhelmed. I also work with couples who want to reconnect, and men 60+ who are exploring second half of life questions. I do offer team-building and corporate workshops as well, plus wellness retreats and immersion experiences at my ranch in Colorado. This work is my life purpose, and it is an honor to listen and accompany my clients on their journey back to wholeness and vitality.
To schedule a consultation if you are interested in getting some help you with your horse, or to learn how to partner with horses to provide equine-assisted learning and therapy, click here. I help new horse owners learn basic first aid, feed and care of horses, proper tack fit, mindful riding and relationship work with their horse to have an excellent foundation, with safety for both human and horse a priority. I concentrate on the Five Freedoms and identifying behavior cues.
Currently I see clients at my ranch in Colorado and at a facility in Bertram, Texas. I also see clients via ZOOM. I partner with several other passionate professionals to lead retreats in the United States. For information go to retreats and immersions.
My first book “Unbridled Connection: Soul Discovery Through Nature and Horses” was published in 2020 and is available at local bookstores and online.
Abigail Corliss MA, LPCC, NCL-P
“He who has a why to live for can bear almost any how”- Friedrich Nietzshe
Rather early in my life I found my why, my passion, and my zeal. That is to say, I found horses. Horses have been my compass guiding me along the way on my professional journey. I achieved a dual Bachelor’s Degree in Science with majors in Psychology and English Equestrian Studies from The University of Findlay in 2018. Following that I spent a year working for an equine therapy center and horse rescue training and caring for the horses. This experience led me to pursue a deeper understanding of mental health and I shifted gears into working with children and families impacted by substance use, mental illness, and abuse and neglect. During this time I also attended Colorado Christian University’s Master’s in Clinical Mental Health Counseling program where I graduated in 2022. While working towards my master’s degree I completed my internship with Integrated Insight Therapy largely working with client’s in an out-patient setting and in the Delta County Jail.
Since achieving my master’s degree I have gained my Licensed Professional Counselor Candidate (LPCC) certificate from DORA. As well as gaining additional certifications in Natural Lifemanship which is a specific form of Equine Assisted Psychotherapy. In my clinical practice I work from a trauma focused perspective and utilize many forms of therapy including but not limited too CBT, DBT, Existential Therapy, Adlerian Therapy, Gestalt Therapy, REBT, Motivational Interviewing, Solution Focused Therapy, Person- Centered Therapy, and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy. I am a therapist with Integrated Insight Therapy and accept Medicaid and most insurances. Additionally, I work with both children and adults in my office in Paonia, on telehealth, and with Unbridled Connection utilizing equine assisted psychotherapy. Email her at [email protected]
Jessie Edwards MSW, Psychotherapist
Since a very young age, I would find solace amongst animals and nature.
My sense of direction, my purpose, and my true self always found a safe haven when connected to all living beings around us. A strong sense of care, empathy and compassion has always guided me in this life and even when the waves got too big to fight against, my connection to all that is around me guided me to shore.
I believe we all need a safe place, a sounding board, a place in which no judgment comes into play so that we can truly heal. The world we live in can often be scary, harsh and we often do not have the tools to navigate it. If there is something I want to be able to accomplish in this beautiful, crazy thing we call life, is to be there for others: animals, humans, nature. Quite some time ago, when I was on a very long flight that landed me to this place I now call home, I made a promise to an elderly gentleman who was sitting next to me: ‘I will always do my best to ensure no one is left behind, no one feels alone’ . This is the journey I have been on.
I truly believe we all have the answers within ourselves, but challenges, trauma, fear, disconnection, made us not trust ourselves, not listen to ourselves. The foundation of my work is based on helping my clients tap into themselves, connect to themselves, listen to their bodies and emotions and support them in establishing the tools needed to navigate these waters and find their center. Technology has pushed away from our natural rhythms and genuine connection (just to name a few): I believe it is important for us to get ‘back to the basics’, to get back into connection with ourselves, others, nature and all of her beings.
I graduated from Arizona State University in 2018 with a Bachelor Degree in Spanish and then graduated from the University of South Florida in 2022 with my Master’s in Clinical Social Work. I’m currently licensed as a Clinical Social Work Candidate (SWC), and I am working towards my Licensed Clinical Social Work (LCSW) license. I practice EMDR, as well as a blend of cognitive behavioral therapy, somatic therapy, dialectical behavioral therapy, mindfulness, acceptance therapy, positive psychology, solution focused therapy, emotion focused therapy and I am currently studying under Gabor Mate in his Compassionate Inquiry course. I also am certified Level I with the Natural Lifemanship Institute, and I am currently in training for Level 2 certification.
My clients often commented on my approach being gentle, nurturing and yet firm. Every emotion, every challenge, every person is welcome and I do my darndest to ensure that everyone feels safe in their healing journey.
Email her at [email protected]