Your Horse Is Your Mirror

Business, Mindset & Performance Coach

for equestrians


About Me

My Professional Life

I'm often told that I am a compassionate and motivational coach. 

Amongst the areas I deliver for these clients are motivational goal setting and inspirational business coaching, alongside compassionate life coaching. In addition, I also provide performance coaching for equestrians. 


I have a diverse portfolio of clients and  I specialise in ladies who dream of starting their own business, or have a new business and need a helping hand to get the basics done, someone to help find your motivation, your inspiration and help you stay calm when challenges arise.

Do you start to think about how to start, but the thought of starting is just too much? Have you already done lots of research but need a helping hand to get you on the right road? The thought of dealing with technology, Facebook, Instagram, website, leaves you feeling overwhelmed and your confidence disappears in a flash?

Experience & Qualifications

In 2020 I became an accredited Master NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming) Practitioner and Coach, Master Hypnotherapist and Master Time Line® therapist and have been coaching since 2016. I am also an accredited Master Empowered Equestrian™ Coach.


The American Board of Neuro-Linguistic Programming (ABNLP)

The American Board of Hypnotherapy (ABH)

Time Line Therapy® Association (TLTA)

As a Lean Six Sigma green belt, I use Lean and Six Sigma principles when coaching my business clients to build an efficient and effective business.

I am also an ITIL (Information Technology Infrastructure Library) v3 Expert with 21 years experience in Service Management across all lifecycles. I currently head up the Service Knowledge Management function in Defra (Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs) in the UK, and am accountable for IT Knowledge for approximately 30,000 end users and 6 strategic core suppliers. I bring many tools, techniques and skills from Service Management to my business coaching.

My Life Story


My years spent with horses have given me the passion and drive to share with you what I have learned and continue to learn. It’s a journey that never ends.

I have been riding horses since I was about 6 years old, and was never the most confident rider. However with Jake, my horse of a lifetime, I have done more than I could ever dream of.

I bought Jake as a 5 year old, ID x TB, who had hunted in Ireland but could not canter a circle! He took me eventing within 6 months of us becoming a partnership and delivered the most amazing dressage scores due to his light paces and careful, brave jump! We evented at pre-novice for a couple of years, then my trainer took Jake to intermediate.


2002 brought the urge to try side-saddle, and Jake took to it like a duck to water. We collected a wide and diverse wardrobe, ranging from vintage hunting habit to reproduction Georgian habit. I set up a group to promote side-saddle riding and we gave displays at many country show and game fairs, riding to modern upbeat music.


During 2008, Jake had another change of career and we started competing at TREC (orienteering on horseback), a sport derived from the test that trail ride guides in France had to undertake before they could escort trail riders. We also enjoyed TREC in a training capacity until Jake’s passing, and I continue to organise several training camps/clinics for various TREC clubs.


We also discovered natural horsemanship in 2011 and Jake was invited by Monty Roberts to be in his demonstration at Myerscough College, because of his fear of donkeys. It was an amazing experience to work with Monty and Kelly Marks, and Jake with Lucy the Donkey was featured in the Intelligent Horsemanship Christmas DVD.

Jake and I continued our horsemanship journey and TREC up until November 2016 when I retired Jake aged 27.  He had an idyllic retirement in Shropshire, doing what horses do best, eating, sleeping and pooping. Since then, I have followed the principles of horsemanship and was lucky enough to meet and have dinner with Buck Brannaman in 2015.


In 2017 I found Perry at Hopton Rehabilitation and Homing. I had been tentatively looking for another horse after Jake retired, and preferably a rescue horse. I wanted to give something  back to the equine community.


Perry had some issues, however I was confident we could work through them. He is nothing like Jake (15hh bay Welsh cross compared to 17hh grey IDxTB). He was very nervous and stressy, so my natural calm and laid back attitude suited him. 

We got on like a house on fire. He was a super safe hack, he earned the nickname quad bike. With regular coaching from Sally Brett we soon developed a mutually trusting partnership, and continue to improve as each day goes on. In 2019 we achieved one of our goals to ride with Buck Brannaman in his clinic at Aintree Racecourse in the UK. What a star, Perry took everything in his stride, 25 horses working together in the arena.

Sadly, on the 13th February 2020, it was the end of an era. I lost Jake after a short bout of colic and aged 31, he was put to sleep to graze pastures new in peace.





I wanted to commit these words to ‘paper’ in order to thank Julia for her time, patience and care in providing me with coaching in both my professional and personal life.

Let me begin by saying Julia is a woman who gets things done! That’s a bold statement and one that can often conjure up images of a bullish personality. However, Julia is far from that. She is relaxed, caring and warm. Julia has a nature that puts you at ease. Just spend 10 minutes speaking to Julia and you’ll find you’re in the presence of someone who is understated, yet with a sublime, innate ability to understand you. She is to the point, yet again, is able to deliver that in such a way as to leave you smiling with the thought: “Ah, she gets it!”. Julia delivers her coaching in a simple yet comprehensive way, guiding you to the answers you need. Showing you how to take control, how to switch your thoughts from negative to positive and how to make that your habit.


Having worked in various sectors, I can say with great experience and without doubt, Julia McHugh is the best coach I have had the good fortune to work with.


Thank you, Julia, you really are the best.



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