Randolph, VT 05060
Joan Goldsworthy began listening to the horses as a young girl. Fortunate enough to grow up with a regal, half-Arab mare, Starr, and a stylish little Morgan gelding, Nicki, she navigated the challenges of adolescence on their backs, always looking to them for understanding and wisdom. To help support her beloved companions, she boarded others’ horses and gave informal riding lessons to children and adults alike—the initial incarnation of her life mission to foster positive connections between people and horses.
Nicki’s sudden passing abruptly ended a golden era. It was time to shoulder adult burdens now and keeping a horse became too difficult. For many years she went without, but the love and dream of horses never died. Attending university first with the thought of entering the field of veterinary medicine, she eventually realized that her greatest strength lay in communication rather than science. She graduated with a degree in English and began working as a writer and editor for the world’s largest reference book company, writing hundreds of articles on the lives of notable people for various books including Contemporary Authors and Biography Today.
Motherhood brought new opportunities for teaching others to love themselves and their world. Joan worked in the public schools both as a reading mentor and as a teacher of the Environmental Learning for Life program, a natural history curriculum designed to give children respect and wonder for nature and the environment. In addition she led Girl Scout troops on many adventures ranging from hikes in the mountains to simulating an oil spill and experimenting to find the best ways of rescuing the affected land and animals (using toy animals, of course!). Work as a fitness instructor was another way she guided people to take care of themselves and realize their full potential.
The call of the horses was always there in the background, with the gentle spirits of Nicki and Starr continuing to guide her even when they were long gone from this earth. Joan rode and visited with horses whenever possible but it was much too infrequent. Then in 2011 her curiosity was sparked by the announcement of a Facilitated Equine Experiential Learning (FEEL) workshop, “Discover Your Inner Self,” led by FEEL alumni Maryellen Werstein and Erin Halloran. Knowing nothing about FEEL, she attended the workshop simply because it sounded like a fun day with horses and a nice lunch. What a surprise to find that this new way of connecting with horses was not only fun – it was a profoundly transformational experience as well. Attending two more FEEL workshops showed her that each experience in this work is valuable and unique. With the encouragement and affirmation of the horses, she enrolled in the FEEL facilitator training program at Horse Spirit Connections in Tottenham, Ontario. She received her certification in 2016 and continues to learn more from the horses each day.
Joan is passionate about carrying this powerful teaching and healing modality out into the world, with the goal of bringing humans and horses together for safe, respectful interactions that enrich the lives of both. She believes that FEEL work can help people lead more positive, balanced, fully realized lives, as well as allowing horses to express their tremendous gifts of wisdom and generosity. She and her horses are pleased to help any individuals seeking to connect with their authentic selves and lead more compassionate, fully realized lives.
To learn more about FEEL or schedule an appointment, contact Joan at 802.728.3925 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.