My Therapist Eats Hay - Equine Assisted Learning with Genevieve Nicholas

How can spending time with horses drastically change your life? Today’s guest, Genevieve Nicholas, shares her work with Equine Assisted Learning.

How can spending time with horses drastically change your life?

Today’s guest, Genevieve Nicholas, shares her work as an Equine Assisted Learning Facilitator. Gen uses her horses as teaches on being present. Her work with women and teenage girls builds a feeling of safety, leadership and respect. Allowing her clients to walk away grounded, connected and confident in using their voice. We discuss different learning styles, making brave choices and developing the skill of speaking out as women.

Gen is a horse mad seasoned entrepreneur who has a passion for horses and being outdoors. Originally from Australia, Gen now calls Plano, Texas, home having made the move with her husband and two children back in 2012. Gen previously owned a successful café chain in Australasia, with five branches across Sydney. She had a strong career in corporate accounting and extensive leadership experience with a global corporate company. However, shen she hit her forties Gen felt uninspired, done with the corporate life and was ready for a fresh start doing what she loved, with women who inspired her. Gen knows in her heart that if she can make a difference in one person’s life and help with their growth and development to provide some relief as well as tools they can utilize, she will have succeeded in her life mission - to change someone's world one human at a time!

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(02:17) Gen shares what it means to be an Equine Assisted Learning Facilitator and how it differs to therapy.

(04:30) How the horses guide the humans through different learning styles and picking up on internal conflicts.

(10:08) How learning with a horse parallels to learning in everyday life.

(12:10) The choices you make in life

(12:50) Choices, using your voice, speaking up and being authentic in all areas of life.

(14:50) Everybody is a leader!

(20:10) Gen’s personal experience of having children with mental health challenges, breaking the stigma and making a difference to mental health.

(25:00) The results Gen has seen in her clients through her work in as little as 4 hours.

(28:30) Developing the skill of speaking out.

(32:00) The Equine Assisted Learning Network - Equine options for those not in Plano Texas.

(35:23) Tapping into your bold, brave self whilst working with Paula.



horses, equine assisted, programme, women, jen, life, step, learning, pieces, love, find, skills, feel, therapist, helping, confidence, talk, people, facilitator, terms


Paula Shepherd, Genevieve Nicholas

Paula Shepherd 00:01

Hi, I'm Paula Shepherd, I went to college to get a good job and make a lot of money. Back then, no one talked about doing what you love. And while I successfully climbed the corporate ladder, I felt like there was something missing. So I left the seemingly comfortable corporate world at 40 years old for the freedom of full time entrepreneurship. Today, I get to help ambitious women go from entrepreneur to competent CEO of their lives and businesses. I created this podcast to share what I've learned with you to make your journey just a little easier, and to connect you with other incredible business owners who took a chance on themselves and who they are becoming. So whether you're just getting started, are all in or just want to hear friendly voice. Come on in and sit with us. Now, let's dive in. All right, we are back with another episode of The confidence sessions. And I have a guest, unlike anyone that I've ever had here before, I have Jen Nicklaus, who is a certified life coach. But the most exciting piece of this is that she's also an equine assisted learning certified facilitator. And she is the CEO. I know it really is right. And she's a CEO and founder of saddle up life skills, which is focused on supporting women and teenage girls to see themselves as leaders, which is so so important and to be able to make really competent decisions and bracing their future with resilience and enthusiasm. I think Jen has been around horses her entire life. And you will hear for a second that she is originally from Australia with the most amazing accent ever. But she lives in Plano, Texas, where she's been for the last 10 years. So Jen, I could continue to sit here and read a bio and talk about you or we could hear all about you. And what the heck is that mouthful of Equine Assisted Learning certified blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. What does that even mean? Tell us? Tell us who you are. Tell us all about this business.

Genevieve Nicholas 02:16

Well, thanks, Paula. Thanks for having me on your podcast today. I really appreciate it. And you know, I totally love you. I followed you for a long time we've worked together. So this is such a treat to finally be able to do this together. So yeah, hi, my name is Jen. I am from Australia, as you can probably tell by this lovely accent that I have. But you guys all have a great accent too. And yes, what I do is a bit of a mouthful in terms of who I am Equine Assisted Learning Facilitator. So what is Equine Assisted Learning? First, I think that's really what this is all about. So a lot of people get very confused in terms of thinking that it's therapy. And I do want to start off by saying this is not therapy, and I am not a licenced therapist. So Equine Assisted Learning is a learner based educational experience with horses. Our clients engage in objectively driven exercises and find themselves learning valuable life skills in a really fun and exciting way. While working with our beautiful herd of horses that we have out in our Aubrey facility. Equine Assisted Learning was found or is found to be very effective, powerful, positive, and educational. So our exercises have been developed to encourage self confidence through validated hands on experiences. And it's that hands on experience that is really phenomenal, because we can all learn in a classroom environment. And that's great, but we all don't learn the same way. So this is where Equine Assisted Learning comes into play because we can actually uncover all the different ways of learning for an individual because we're not all auditory, we're not all visual, some of us really need to hear it, see it and actually practice it in order for it to be in, you know, taken in to our system to get into the brain. So as a facilitator, the the way this whole programme works is that our horses are the teachers I am not the teacher, I am actually a facilitator, and I look to my horses for those stepping moments to actually talk to the clients or the humans as I call them. Well, we have human and we have horse, so I you know I looked at the horse to give me those stepping moments to actually see what's going on with the human part of the team. Because the horses energetically pay pick up on what's going on with this humans. And one of the key pieces with learning at our facility is that you have to be very congruent, you have to be very congruent with mind and gut in terms of what it is you really want to do. Because if the outward part of you are saying, sure I can do this, and the inward part is, is in conflict, that energy disconnect is what the horse will pick up on. And they will show me immediately that there is a problem. And that's time for me to step in.

Paula Shepherd 05:33

Okay. With your with Equine Assisted Learning therapy, this is not therapy, which you just mentioned. But it's also not riding the horses. So I want to make that very clear.

Genevieve Nicholas 05:50

Yes, 100%, we do not ride our teachers. So just like in school, we don't ride our Yeah, exactly. Just like in school, you cannot hop on your teachers back and expect them to teach you science, math, English, I don't think that's really going to work. And I don't think they're really going to condone, they're

Paula Shepherd 06:09

going to the principal salutely. Exactly. So

Genevieve Nicholas 06:13

our programmes are all ground based, because our horses actually can't teach. If we're on their backs, when we're on their backs riding them, we're actually the person that's in control. And we're actually deciding where we're going. And the horse needs to move forward with that, that in mind, but when we're on the ground, everything is choice based, my horses all have choice as to our human or human clients, right. So we all have the power of choice. So when the horse is actually on the ground, they can choose how they're going to, to react, how they're going to be because they're actually a horse can only think act behave like a horse, right? And so we're in their arena, we're in their space. And it's like, we're another horse. And if we're not demonstrating those same things a horse needs, which is safety, leadership, respect, they demand all of those, if we're not demonstrating that, then they're going to show us exactly straightaway what's going on. And these are all stepping talking moments. And for humans, it's actually quite an aha moment to

Paula Shepherd 07:26

wow, but people are coming in. And I imagine that they don't see themselves as leaders they're coming in, and the end result is greater confidence. I imagine that can be a really kind of overwhelming, terrifying experience to say, I'm going to be working with these horses. And I'm saying I'm going to do this. But inside I'm feeling like a big ball of nerves. And I'm already being told that by doing that, it's going to create a problem with the horses. What is the problem look like? The somebody's coming in with that? I'm not really sure. And you're going to have this transformation, what would give them a warm and fuzzy feeling in terms of understanding that it's okay, they're not going to get hurt. I want to give people good idea of what that means. Because there has to be some level of fear when their living situation.

Genevieve Nicholas 08:25

Yeah, and you know, if you haven't been around horses, I mean, as much as that, I mean, we all know, when you drive past a field, they're just the most beautiful creatures on God's given us. So but when you're up close and personal, or you're walking into an area where you're upfront and personal with a horse, it can be very confronting, and there can be fear, there can be a lot of fear. And it's funny, a lot of my clients don't actually tell me that they have that fear. And that's okay, they don't have to, again, we're all talking about choices here. Like choice is a very big part of our programme. So you know, they have the choice whether they speak up or they don't speak up. But with that being said, my horses, I can I can only I can't 100% guarantee how they will react, they will react to how they react. But I will say that unless we're doing something unsafe or unkind to the horse, which may in turn, turn into something worse. And of course, none of that's going to happen because I'll step in before that even goes haywire. A horse is always going to be looking for a leader and safety. And if they don't find that in their human counterpart, they will go off and find it themselves.

Paula Shepherd 09:50

Because they sounds like you just described people in an office setting.

Genevieve Nicholas 09:56

Right that's that's another beautiful part about this because this is all peril. Learning, this learning doesn't stay in the arena, we always parallel it back to real life, and you just brought up a really great parallel bear. So just like a horse, you're right, the human is going to go somewhere else to feel safe. So, with that being said, you know, these are, again, these are all talking points, you know, if, if, if a client doesn't feel comfortable, and that is kind of coming up, they're going to be moments that we're going to talk about, like what's happening, you know, why, why do you think your horse is doing this? What are you thinking about, at this point in time? And how does that, you know, transpose back into your real life. And these are the types of questions that we're really going to get to get to the grassroots. So when we talk about building confidence, and leadership, I mean, everything we do is all about the person. It's not about being you know, I've got to be the best leader at the, you know, the high school football team or the cheerleader team, or, you know, at work, I've got to be the the team, you know, the best team leader, because as we know, there's no I in team where team is, is a is a group, and your team is always going to include your horse. So with that being said, building up these pieces of confidence, they can be very minut pieces, if we were as a human thinking about how this feels. But in actual fact, it's a really giant step for that person. And for them to realise that when they walked into the arena, they were very fearful, a bit hesitant, they weren't kind of sure what this was all going to entail. And just the power involved in being able to walk and lead a horse around an arena. Because remember, the horse has choice, the horse does not have to walk next to you, the horse can go the other way, the horse does not have to be focused, and be in tune with you. So if you can take a 1200 pound animal, and actually have them come along with you on this journey. Imagine how that feels.

Paula Shepherd 12:08

But then on the opposite side of that, as you were saying this, I feel like it's a reminder to people that they have a choice, because there are so many of us that gets stuck on autopilot thinking this is the way that it needs to be. And we're not making choices. We're we're conceding and allowing ourselves to be drugged around without deciding, like you said, the horse does that. Yes, I want to do this. Yes, I want to walk alongside you or No, I don't want to. We're not doing that. And I think on the reverse side, it's a really great reminder to those folks.

Genevieve Nicholas 12:47

Absolutely. So, again, when we talk about choice, so many other life skills come into that piece, because it's using our voice. Are we speaking up for ourselves? You know, are we really being congruent in terms of what we feel and think I'm being authentic. Because all of these pieces come into play. And they become reflective moments if you actually stop and think. So even with all of our programmes, while we might work through a specific skill. You know, one of our objectively driven exercises, there are so many other life skills that come into play here. First and foremost, always, because while we might work on communication, we're still having to work on team building problem solving. We're still having to work on those, the choice piece, these are all skills, and we need to start thinking about exactly what it is that drives us. And are we really happy being dragged along? Or do we want to stop and say no? And how would that feel?

Paula Shepherd 14:01

Oh my gosh, wow, what? So so this is I just felt like so many lessons in such a simple what feels like such a simple exercise, but very holistic and basic. And I think we don't take enough time to do some of these things. And so the lessons that you're learning from these horses, there's just absolutely incredible. Yeah, totally. There are people though, that don't see themselves as leaders. And I think when we're looking at society as a whole, they, they and and I'm gonna say just in the workforce in general, you're either a leader or you're a follower. And in this case, what you're kind of saying is, everybody is a leader, like you have leadership over yourself. Is that what I'm hearing you say?

Genevieve Nicholas 14:50

Absolutely, that's exactly what what you're hearing you're saying, this is all about you. You as an individual, you as a human being mean, this is about finding your own true inner leader, because in the workforce, okay, maybe you are not a leader, so to speak, maybe you're not the manager of the team or, or whatever. But this is not about being one of those people, this is about your own internal leadership qualities that we all have. And somewhere, somehow, you do have to step up, and you do have to take charge, it may not be in the workforce that might be in your family unit, it could be in your friendship unit, it could be somewhere, but at some point, you will be that person that people look to. And so developing those Inner Inner pieces and finding and that, that leads into building yourself confidence, because the more you can demonstrate your own authenticity, and feeling really comfortable about who you are. That in itself is self confidence, because you emit it every day. Wow.

Paula Shepherd 16:04

So what got you into this, I know that you, you've been around horses your entire life. And if I remember correctly, you kind of grew up around them. And they were your, your, your friends and maybe like your you know, maybe you're being babysat at by, by by horse? I don't know. But how did you get into this? How did you shift from I love horses to I want them to show you how powerful you can be?

Genevieve Nicholas 16:33

Totally, that's a great question. And I will try to make it as succinct and short as I possibly can. You know, it was

Paula Shepherd 16:42

a challenge for me. So yeah, you're in the right place, John, we all

Genevieve Nicholas 16:45

have a story. And that story can be as long or as short as we want it to be. But look, yes, my passion is horses, it's always has been, I think I was born with that passion, I came out loving horses. And I was luckily lucky enough to have parents that threw me into into horse camps from you know, the minute I started school in grade one, or kindergarten, or whatever, I was at Horse cans all the time, and then started writing and taking it a little bit further. And so you know, that they were always my, as an only child, they were my like, best friend, they were who I felt most comfortable with. And I think that piece comes into the fact that you know, horses don't judge horses don't lie, they're very forgiving. And so all of those pieces, not that I knew them back then. But what I know now and reflecting back, I can see why that affinity and passion with these horses and always wanting to be around them. And, and how they made me feel which was very calm. Very much. I felt grounded, I felt whole. And that's what horses, you know, gave to me. And so fast forward a really long time. Fast forward in life, to kind of where I am today. My other passion is I love helping people, you know, that's been one of the things that I've taken away from all of my careers. And being a business owner as well, is the fact that I totally love helping people I love seeing them step into who they are and move forward in, in their life, in their career, whatever the case may be. So wanting to mesh those two things together horses and this love of helping people. That's really how it kind of came about. And I think also for myself too, you know, as I've gotten older, and I got a literally got back in the saddle at the age of 48. And started writing again, I, I really wanted to build upon that and it was very, and that's how I became you know, led me to become a certified life coach. And then sort of continually moved me forward into this realm and finding Equine Assisted Learning. And there's a lot of different avenues out there with Equine Assisted services that are offered and services, you know, being the the taller umbrella here we have the therapy, we have psychotherapy, there's all sorts of different things people can Google. But you know, with my skill with what I do is just predominantly that educational experience with life skills. And I like to say horses are my therapists, and my therapist eats hay. And let me tell you, it's probably way more expensive with my therapist than it is with a human therapist. Because hey, the cost of pay and for all the horse people that are listening here, they will totally relate to the cost of pay and what that slike right now, which is absolutely shocking. Anywho so, you know, that's kind of what led me into this. But you know, there is a personal story behind that as well, because I do have two kiddos that have mental health challenges. And one of them is, is probably way more challenging than the other. And so, you know, mental health for me is a really big passion. It's for me, it's really getting out there and, and helping break that stigma and also wanting to help, you know, one individual if I can make a difference in one individual's life that suffering through some kind of mental health challenge by doing these programmes, then you know, that is that is success or that that just makes my my heart sing. So mental, you know, with regards to my family and my kiddos, this is what this is a big reason why I do what I do, and particularly why I'm networking in the mental health community.

Paula Shepherd 21:02

Yeah, I was gonna say, I know that while you are not a therapist, that you do partner with licenced therapists in your area, I know, you do a lot of connecting with them, you have them out to your barn to experience what that's like, what does that been like for them? What how have they reacted folks who are in, you know, supporting youngsters, or, you know, young young women, or even women who have mental health challenges, who maybe have been through sexual abuse, domestic abuse, or have some other trauma that has has led them to those services? How, how do they see this as as working for them, and being complimentary?

Genevieve Nicholas 21:46

Well, I mean, when they first come out, they just feel like they've been transported into a completely other place. Like, it's seriously like going into a bubble. Just being out there in the open space, with all these horses, and we have 12 horses on the property. So you know, not all of them are teachers in our programme, but just to be surrounded by that many horses of different sizes, shapes, and things like that. It's it's phenomenal to witness and they, they come out, and they have a lot of them have all told me there's just this instant, state of calm and quiet. And in the world that we live in today to experience just a moment of that is, is a gift. It really is, you know, so many of them come out and they say, Wow, I could sit here all day. And I said, I know I mean, I totally love my office. So you know. And clearly I'm not there today. But you know, I totally love my office. And they've you know, a lot of them are said they can they know that there are therapeutic benefits, they understand and recognise the therapeutic benefits that come from just being in the presence of horses. So whilst I say this isn't therapy, there are definitely therapeutic benefits that will come from this because we all know with mental health, whether you are having challenges or not, you might just be feeling a slight amount of anxiety or just overwhelmed. I mean, that's just a general thing these days is the overwhelm and the and the feelings of uncertainty. And even with those two pieces by themselves, coming out and just being able to be in this presence of these horses, because horses live in the present moment, they are not thinking about the next second, they're not thinking about last week that they didn't get enough hay or grain. They don't think like that. They think the here and the now. And that's all that all they're doing is that and they grounded, and they're energetically connected with the rest of their herd. So being just in that space. Honestly, it's, it's so hard to describe unless you come out and actually witness it personally. But just being with a horse and just standing there with a horse, your mind literally just empties

Paula Shepherd 24:23

and have what kind of experiences or or what kind of results have have folks come to you and said, you know, we came out to the barn and I really loved this experience. And it was an amazing opportunity for me to tap into my leadership. But after the fact I found myself translating that to this in this way. Have people shared some of those things with you and if so, what are they? Yeah,

Genevieve Nicholas 24:49

great question. You know, we've had I've, I run a series of different things. So one of the I actually run a women's workshop And that's a four hour, quite powerful programme. And I've had women from that, I've had one lady that basically, after going through the four hours, she completely has has changed her life around, she's getting a divorce from her husband. Now, I'm not saying come out to me because, you know,

Paula Shepherd 25:20

because you wanted to get the word you want to get to.

Genevieve Nicholas 25:23

But it's allowed her the space to actually reconnect and think about herself, in a in four hours of just without those distractions of phones and responsibilities, and all the different hats that we wear, and allow her to actually sit and just be and go through these programmes and reflect upon her life and, and think about what the horse was teaching her and with the skills that we were learning on that day. And really come back to, you know, where am I at in my life? And am I happy, and I've had, you know, I've had, I've had similar kinds of results, not so much from divorce, and that, but I don't really want to be known as that person, the person that helps people get to come out to my hospitality. And now, that'll Yeah, but all I'm saying is it, you know, some of these other women that have come out, have really tapped into going forward with their passion, and tap back into who they are, and what they really want. And stepping forward into that life and starting that process. So these are the kinds of things that, you know, I've seen come about, and being in the space with some of these women, you know, 12 months after the fact, I still see them in my day to day life, and I see where they're going. And they still talk about when they were doing the programme when I was with spirit, or when I was with Moose, and spirit and most of the teachers in my programme, just so you know, they're not clients that have named that. But they are teachers. And, you know, they still talk about those moments when spirit or moves, you know, stopped and wasn't moving, or, you know, when I wasn't congruent, this is what happened. And this continually sticks sticks. In my mind, whenever I'm doing this work, or building my business or dealing with a family issue, these things come up. So this is what we love, the learning doesn't stay in the arena. We want them to take it home, we want them to continue to continue to use those resources and those memories, these are tools for them to step into and continually pull up. So yeah, it's, it's, I love it. I mean, they're there. They're just the women's things that are saying, you know, I had a group of 10 girls come out, and they just were blown away. I mean, just reading what because we all journal, everybody journals at the end of the programme. And they were journaling, some of what they were saying was was even more in depth than I see from my adults. And these were a group of, you know, 15 year olds, and they were talking about the communication piece and really diving into how they need to speak and what they need to say and, and how that needs to actually come out. We need to speak up in in a powwow

Paula Shepherd 28:22

like this is a crucial, such a crucial skill that we don't learn primarily as women. I think, you know, men too, I mean, I have I have sons, but I don't see this as a it's more do what you're supposed to do follow the rules, right? Your decision is based on the status quo, or what other people say, or you being able to please other people, and it's going kind of full circle back to what your original point was, is that these horses have a choice. And so do you. And And overall, the most major thing I'm hearing is people remember that they have the choice. And not only do they remember, they have the choice, but they have the skills to be able to make a decision that benefits them with confidence.

Genevieve Nicholas 29:16

Absolutely. That's 100% Correct. And of course, we're not saying here that, you know, going out after these programmes, the things that we do with these life skills, it's going to be easy, because life isn't easy, let's be real. But we can draw upon these things that we've done in a really safe, but fun environment where we learned and where there was no judgement and to be honest with you, there's no real right or wrong here either. In the no one's gonna say, Oh, don't do that. That's the wrong thing. There's no right or wrong. It's what you feel, and what are the consequences from what you feel then the translates into doing and of course, when we do something, there's always going to be a consequence. But if you can come Back to that way of feeling at that time, and transmute that back into the situation you're in today be at at work home or friends or whatever. And utilise the skill and do the hard thing. You will be blown away, I believe, by your own abilities, because it comes down to trust, and having trust in yourself. And again, these are, these are still qualities that we're learning with the horses as well building that trust. Oh, my gosh,

Paula Shepherd 30:35

well, I'm really excited because in a couple of weeks, I am coming out. And I am bringing my daughter who has special abilities. So she has some intellectual disabilities, I'm bringing my seven year old, and I'm bringing my mom and we're all going to experience this together. And I am absolutely thrilled about the opportunity. And I think, you know, there'll be so much benefit I see for my, you know, my seven year old who is not a daredevil, he's just not a daredevil. And then my daughter, who also has a lot of anxiety, and helping her to feel like she does have the ability to make a choice. And then of course, as adults who doesn't need that reminder as a woman. So I am super excited to be able to experience this myself and just a few weeks and come back and share with everybody what we learned. And I'm sure it's going to be just absolutely incredible. So I can't wait. And also, I love meeting people in real life and being able to give you a big squeeze. So if folks are not near Plano, Texas, and you know, of course, you could certainly retreat near the Dallas area and come hang out for a programme with Jen at satellite lifeskills. But if they're not, and that's not the case, and they're super curious and excited about doing something like this, what would be the option for them? Sure,

Genevieve Nicholas 32:07

well, obviously, you know, we want to help as many people as we can and share what we have. So through the programme where I got certified, we're actually all governed as facilitators by the Equine Assisted Learning Network. So if folks are in another state, and they really would like to experience what Equine Assisted Learning is all about, I would suggest reach out to me, and let me know where you are situated. And then I can put you in touch through my community, which is, as I said, it's global, were in the United States, we're in Canada, we're in Australia, we're in New Zealand, we have we have folks that are certified through our organisation, even in Europe. So like I say, you know, there is a vast amount out there of facilitators. So reach out to me, and I can then find out who would be best to chat with you and put you in touch with that, that other facilitator. Fantastic, and they can just get on your website to learn more information about we've been talking about today. So that's saddle up., correct. Correct. Totally. And that's, and they can connect with you there as well. 100% Yes, shoot me a message through that in the contact form. You'll see the different programmes and workshops that I offer. Most of them with most of our programmes with the exception of our women's workshop, they all will regard will will have you reach out to me directly so that we can then talk about what your needs are and potentially look and see if we have a group running or whether we can do this as an individual series of programmes which we can absolutely do. It doesn't have to be group based because there's still a team with a human and a horse. So so with that being said there are there are dates for the rest of the year for my authentic you which is the women's workshop. Otherwise, contact me and we can go from there. And you can also find me on LinkedIn and Facebook as well. LinkedIn on London My name Genevieve Nicholas and Facebook is either Genevieve Nicholas or settle up lifeskills

Paula Shepherd 34:22

fantastic. We'll make sure that everything is linked in the show notes so that you can reach out ask all of your questions and then if you are not in her area, be able to reach out and find someone that she trusts and can recommend for you to go through this programme on your own and I will certainly keep everybody up to date on my experience. Well Jen as we're wrapping up I know you and I have worked together for a while now and we've known each other even longer than that but through the pandemic never met each other in person but but met each other online like so many people did. And then we We work together, we've worked together for a while, we're still working together right now. And I've seen a huge shift in you in a great way. And I were, how do you feel like you've changed? How do you feel like you've changed for the better or tapped back into kind of your bold, brave self in the co creation that we've been doing together?

Genevieve Nicholas 35:23

Sure, I think, you know, like you say, you know, we've been, I've been following you for a really long time. And, you know, we have worked together, both within a group setting and also individually, and I really do a test to a lot of my growth over the last maybe sort of six to seven months, since we've been really working together, you know, solidly, a lot of that's attested to you, and your abilities. As a coach, as a mentor. I completely look up to you. And I think that you, your directness, but in a loving way. allowed me you pushed me out of the nest, and you helped me to fly and having that support. Behind me, has helped, I think, has given me that it's like a security blanket. You're like, my security blanket I take with me everywhere. So you know, it's there's just so much to it. But you know, when I came to you, I was you know, I knew what I wanted. So that was that was great. Like, I actually knew what I wanted to focus on. But part of me also was you were helping me push push me along, but you couldn't do the work for me. I mean, at the end of the day, I have to do it myself, but I believe that you gave me the tools. And you helped me with the confidence piece, because we could check in with each other and things like that, that I still had you with me. But I was able to step out and do this, start doing networking, start really sharing a lot more about who I am, what I do, and stepping into these communities because it looked to be honest, it was very scary. I you know, going into rooms with people I've never met that are all professional licenced therapists, psychologists, part of many different mental health organisations. And here I am as an equine assisted learning facilitator, and a life coach. And yes, I have some degrees. But with that aside, it can be a little daunting in terms of what that reception will be like, and you really helped me along the way to have that confidence just being as I said, just being my security blanket, I, I could not sing your praises enough.

Paula Shepherd 37:50

You're amazing. But you are such a go getter. And and I want people to understand that when you are in a specific job, when you're in a role, even though you're helping people with competence in this way. You are walking the walk and talking the talk. So it's not that you just magically do I do this thing and I sell this thing you're like, I want to make sure that I'm doing the work. So I can support all of you in the work that I'm sharing. So I just want to make sure that everyone understands that you are the real deal. And that you're not just saying I'm going to help you be more competent, you're like, I'm going to be working on these things on the side for myself, so that I can bring the best parts of me to your experience. So you get the same kinds of tramps transformation. So I appreciate that about you. I love your integrity. I love your authenticity, because you are 100% yourself all the time. And I friggin love it. So, Jen, is there any other words of wisdom that you'd like to leave before we wrap up today?

Genevieve Nicholas 38:56

Goodness gracious, I don't think so. I just you know, I just would love people to come out and experience what I call my arena of discovery. We don't call anything at satellite lifeskills we don't utilise the word recovery, because recovery seems to seems to lead to the fact that you will become you will go back to the way you were exactly. No one will ever be the same. You will be changed in different ways. And any kind of growth or develop self development or whatever development you choose to take on, you will become something a little bit different. And that's why we call our arena the arena of discovery because you are going to discover so many things about yourself. You might it might be just one major aha moment. But that discovery process will continue to keep you moving forward in that self development. So I encourage anyone that lives in the Dallas or North Dallas area or even Austin because You're coming up, come on up so far. Yeah. But you know, anyone who is even coming in for a weekend to just give me a call and, and come out and experience one of these amazing programmes, because seriously, the discovery about yourself will be something you will never forget.


What a great way to wrap up. All right. Well,

Paula Shepherd 40:25

thank you all for listening. And I'll keep you posted about my experience, which I know is going to be phenomenal. Please reach out to Jen find all of her contact information in the show notes. Jen, thank you for being here and for the amazing work that you are putting out into the world to change women and teenagers for the

Genevieve Nicholas 40:42

Thank you. Thank you, Paula. I really appreciate the time. It was a pleasure.

Paula Shepherd 40:46

All right. I'll see you all on another episode of the competent sessions next week. Thank you for listening to this episode of the competent sessions. I know there are hundreds of 1000s of podcasts and I'm so grateful that you chose to spend your time today with me. Head on over to the courage forward slash podcast to check out the show notes from today's episode, and grab links to all the amazing goodies mentioned today. If you love this episode, as much as I loved making it, make sure you don't miss out on any future ones by hitting the subscribe button right now. See you next time.

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