top of page


Julie Smiley.3of3.jpg

As a child I was the kid that was drawn to animals, no matter where I went.  I could be at a friend's birthday party, and if there was a dog around, I was celebrating with the dog.  I was also the old soul that was more interested in being around adults, than kids my own age.  I always sought deep connection, whether it be human or animal.   Although, I didn't feel I fit in too well with humans, as I could see and feel things that no one around me could in the same way.  I learned at a young age to stop speaking my truth.  It has taken many years on my journey to finally say these things publicly.  Now that I understand them as beautiful gifts, I am ready to share them with others on their journey to find and speak their truth.

In my early twenties, I lost my mom and both her parents within two years of one another.  It was the beginning of my experience with deep grief.  The losses continued.  I literally woke up on the morning of the ten year anniversary of my mom's death to realize that I had been angry for an entire decade.  I didn't want to live that way any longer.  It was then that I felt the desire to share my experiences to help others, which led me to the Centre For Living With Dying, where I have been volunteering ever since.  That same year, I also adopted a dog named Hope (yes, her given name when we met) and started training and volunteering to offer Pet Assisted Therapy to seniors and children.  The first location we visited was the nursing facility where my mom passed away (no coincidences).

One afternoon in 2016, I walked into a metaphysical shop to gawk at the pretty, shiny crystals and walked out having signed up for a Self Mastery Program. This program started my journey of acknowledging and believing in my intuitive abilities.  I completed the Beginner level, then the Intermediate, and was one of only a few that were "invited" into the Advanced class.  I learned a lot about my own gifts, as well as how others experience their sensory abilities in different ways. 

In April 2017, I was sitting at lunch at a dog training workshop listening to a woman talk about a course that she taught.  She explained how she worked with horses and dogs to help people learn leadership skills.  I was fascinated by this, as I had never heard of such a thing.  I also trusted my instincts enough to know that something about the woman was off.  In my mind, it was a "no" to work with her, as tempting as it was.  That night in my hotel room, while scrolling through Facebook, the Koelle Institute popped up.  The description was magical and I struggled to believe something like it really existed.  I looked up coaches in my area and found a workshop happening that next weekend, with one spot left.  The Universe had my back.  I got the one spot and that day changed the trajectory of my life. 

My personal Equus Coaching session that day was the most life changing thing I have done for myself thus far.  It was profound and deep.  More so than any type of therapy I had experienced.  I contribute this to the horse's ability to sync their physiological systems to ours, which calms our nervous system.  Then our body and mind can be in calm alignment.  It was something I never knew was possible.  It showed me the depth of fear that I had been living with and empowered me to work through it.  I signed up for the Fall cohort of the Koelle Institute the next week.  In December 2018 I became a certified Equus Coach.  During the Equus Coaching training, I learned that working with horses also connects us to our instincts on a deeper level.  It brought me back to what I had learned in the Self Mastery Program.


Since then, I have worked with two intuitive mentors to hone my specific ways of receiving information.  A year later, the same metaphysical shop reached out to offer me an intuitive practitioner position.  She read my mind, literally, and that's another story for later!

Now, my coaching skills, grief support certification, intuitive abilities and lifelong learning, all come together to assist others in their process of self-awareness, transformation and healing (with and without horses).


In February 2020, I was honored to be nominated by my supervisor from the Centre For Living With Dying, and selected by the Junior League of San Jose as one of eleven recipients (out of 90) to be awarded their annual Crystal Bowl Award for Voluntarism. 


It was a humbling experience to receive such an honor.  It gave meaning to each and every person and animal that I have lost along my life's journey.  It is a way to honor them and feel like their departures carry forward every time I can assist another person through their journey.

bottom of page