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Background and Training

So who am I and what's my story?

Josie Wood for email.jpg

I'm Josie and I'm looking forward to getting to know you and your's a bit of mine.

For the first part of my life I stood on the sidelines, and watched everyone else.  I was painfully shy and before I discovered that I was an introvert, highly sensitive person and empath, I just thought that there was something 'wrong' with me as I felt anxious and overwhelmed most of the time and found the whole business of being a human very hard.

My first husband died in a car crash when I was in my mid 20's and this jettisoned me onto a journey of deep exploration to discover 'what on earth was life about?' I travelled widely, studied with several different spiritual teachers, and trained in many therapeutic modalities. Over the years this journey carried me deeper and deeper into myself and I found that the answers to my searching questions had been inside me all along.

Before I discovered this, life felt to be an uphill struggle, but there was something whispering inside me saying that it could be different, and guiding me not to give up. At first I didn't know what this whispering was - but the stronger it got the more I was motivated to listen to it. I discovered it was my wise, loving, gentle heart. My deep, peaceful, powerful heart. 

Once I was aware of this my life started to change.

I was guided, I was healed, I was empowered and I was inspired in ways that nothing else I had done in all my travels, training and therapy had offered me. It was a radical shift and it was something I could repeat and rely on because it came from inside me.

These are the ways it turned my life showed me...

  • that I'd forgotten who I really am, then it showed me how to rediscover my authentic self

  • how I'd been creating stress with my desperate focus on fixing problems and it showed me how to access the answers that are already here now, inside me

  • how I was leaking energy into the world around me which meant I was empty inside and felt I could crumble at any moment. Then it guided me to manage my energy so I feel strong, clear and resilient

  • how I was triggered by people and situations and living in a defensive mode, then it showed me how to function from a calm, more open place where I could respond to people and situations

  • that the feelings of being lost, adrift, and as if I was bouncing from one calamity to another could change. Then it brought me home to a sense of purpose, peace and certainty that I was in command of my life​​


  • I was making myself ill by running on fear and dread and it brought me back to genuine wellbeing and underlying confidence that all is well

  • the drive to survive through willpower and pushing myself was leading to exhaustion and burnout and it guided me to live in a relaxed, flowing, trusting way that helped me feel alive, strong and self-assured​​

  • my belief I was incapable and inadequate was not true and it helped me build self-assured confidence and activate empowering inner resources and strengths I could rely on

  • that self-doubt, self-judgment and self-criticism were not helpful and it turned these around into self-love, self-compassion and self-care

Sometimes the above challenges can still hook me in - but not for long. Because I know that I have this peaceful power inside that will carry me through to a place of ease, resourcefulness, creativity and inner wisdom. 

Of course all this didn't happen overnight. There were twists and turns that took me through divorce from my second husband, other relationship troubles and chronic illness. These life events were all like crucibles in which I learnt to drop deeper, and deeper still, into my heart...and experience the transformation that brought.  

The learning and changes weren't all about my personal life. I also saw really wonderful shifts in my work with counselling and life coaching clients.


It started gradually. At first, I explored the difference it made when I listened to my clients from my heart, rather from mind. And wow...that in itself was a big thing. There was a deeper connection, more clarity, insight and compassionate understanding available in me.


Then I started to guide my clients to drop down into their own hearts and explore their issues from there. That is when things really started to change in a way that has utterly transformed my work. I saw how clients moved through change more swiftly with much more ease and less struggle, as if they were being carried forward. This was around 20 years ago and ever since I have studied the ways and workings of the heart in intimate depth. I have immersed myself in this, breathed it in and let it teach me and carry me forward too.


The result is a way of sharing this with you which means that you don't have to go through the twists and turns that I did. You can open up to the power of your own heart to guide, heal, empower and inspire you. You can start to fall in love with your life and live from your peaceful inner power that is here...inside



Certified Deep Transformational Coach

I had a wonderful experience training with the Centre for Transformational Coaching.

If you would like to find out more about this approach to coaching – click below…


Licensed HeartMath® Coach

If you want to find out more about the inspiring work that the HeartMath Institute does and all the resources they offer – click below…


Other Training

My initial training, in 1990, was a 3 year Diploma in Person-Centred Counselling and Psychotherapy, with the Person-Centred Approach Institute International. I then trained

in Psychosynthesis with the Centre for Psychosynthesis Studies.

This was followed up with training in Person Centred Expressive Therapy, Arnie Mindel’s Process Work, and William Bloom’s Core Energy Management.

I have taken numerous other training and self-development courses and will continue to do so, as I am committed to my Continuing Professional Development. It is enriching to me to always expand and develop the way I work and what I offer as a therapist and coach.

My core work has developed from a lifetime’s passion for living from the heart, which has meant I’ve explored this in great depth over many years. There are several organisations and teachers that have particularly inspired my understanding and experience. The HeartMath® Institute

is obviously a major influence. Others include Christian Pankhurst, Tej Steiner,

Open Heart Meditation and The Institute of Applied Meditation. 

I have regular supervision with a qualified supervisor.

I am a member of the Association for Coaching, and I abide by their Code of Ethics and Practice.

General Background

Much of my focus centres on my two adult children and my partner - supporting and encouraging each other to really live life to the full. Or you’ll find me dancing, singing, playfully enjoying quirky humour, snuggling with my cat Merlin (who gives brilliant hugs) or with my head in a book.

Really though, my life and work merge seamlessly together so that what I share, explore and teach with clients, lights up my own life too.

I also love to walk on the wild moors of the Yorkshire Dales on the doorstep of my home, to soak up the expansive beauty.


Here's a photo of a place I walk often…it helps me feel grounded, peaceful and instantly connected to the heart of all that is.

Another bit of general background is that I also work as a celebrant and lead ceremonies that mark all of life's important moments and transitions such as weddings, baby naming and funerals

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