Throughout my life and career, I’ve always been a very curious individual – eager to learn, willing to step outside the box, and even when the outside world didn’t understand me, follow my heart.  It’s my underlying passion for helping people become aware of, embrace, and utilize their gifts that led to the creation of Crossing Life’s Bridges.

What do I know about crossing bridges?  Well – they are not always easy to cross, yet in hindsight I have grown through each experience.  Others have crossed similar bridges, yet mine are unique to me.  Although the anticipation of approaching, yet alone crossing, can create a range of emotions – including feeling excited for the adventure ahead to feeling confused, fear, doubt, stuck, or unsettled, staying focused on the here and now is key.  Whether the bridges are relatively short or appear to never end, there is only one way to cross them – bit by bit.

The journey across gives me the opportunity to navigate the way at my own pace and in my time, linking my past to my present to my future without the worry of being defined by it.  The experiences or transitions in my life have taken and continue to take on various dimensions.

Some are physical – Do I move to another state for a job or family?  How do I manage my thoughts and emotions when given a medical concern?  What will happen to my health if I continue to overextend myself? How do I deal with all the physical changes as I age?

Some are relational – How can I bring my best self while liberating my family, friends, and colleagues?  How do I let go of unhealthy relationships?  As seasons pass, how do I navigate the changes in my role as a wife, mother, sister, or daughter?  When I look in the mirror, who do I see?  

Some are emotional – How do I move forward after losing my dad?  What is holding me back from showing my true self?  What could happen if I do not acknowledge and own my true feelings?  How am I taking care of my own mental health?

Some are spiritual – How do I give myself grace when I make mistakes?  Am I willing to be still to hear what God is calling me to do?  How can I nurture the gifts He has given me?  How can I continue to strengthen my faith?

So, what have I learned about crossing bridges?  Trust my foundation and my footing, do not minimize the little things that matter to me, and remind myself I do not have to cross them alone.  What is the benefit of truly knowing myself?  The more aware I am of what makes me tick, the better equipped I am to bring my authentic self in my relationships with family, friends, and colleagues.

Through my life’s journey one thing has remained true:  At the core of my foundation lies that carefree little farm girl from South Dakota and my faith.  When I connect with that little girl and stay true to whom I was created to be, life gets easier.


Myra’s extensive background as a teacher and psychologist has prepared her for many of life’s challenges but her faith has been her stronghold. She has used her mind, heart, and spirit to fulfill her higher purpose of helping others find their higher good.  For over 30 years Myra has worked with people in all stages of life’s journey — children, adolescents and adults – in a variety of educational and mental health settings.  As she grew in her understanding of the human process, Myra began to seek out alternative ways to help those seeking personal growth and self-awareness.  To follow her calling, she shifted her focus to her coaching practice – becoming a Certified 5 Voices and 100X Coach (link).  She also combined her knowledge of human growth with her love of horses becoming certified in the Equine Gestalt Coaching Method (link).  Myra now incorporates a variety of approaches into her work.

Current Credentials:

* Certified Equine Gestalt Practitioner

* GiANT Certified Coach

* Compassion Fatigue Educator

* Doctorate in Educational Psychology and Counseling


Work History:

* Retired Licensed Psychologist

* Retired Registered Play Therapist

* Adjunct/Visiting Assistant. Professor in Psychology

School Psychologist

Special Education Teacher



I am still a South Dakota farm girl at heart.  I have always appreciated and loved how animals and the outdoors could bring me peace and help me feel grounded. My professional life has revolved around helping others help themselves.

I continue to follow my calling of helping others in a setting that combines my love of horses and the outdoors. As an Equine Gestalt Coach, I am able to combine all of my education, experiences, and beliefs while partnering with horses  – what a wonderful gift to come full circle.

Over the past 30 years I have been honored to work with diverse age groups in many different settings  – schools, hospitals, post-secondary, and private practice.  Through these experiences and interactions with others, I have continued to stretch and grow as I follow my calling into the next chapter of my journey as a Certified Equine Gestalt Coach.

                    Myra Heckenlaible-Gotto, EdD

                            Certified Equine Gestalt Practitioner

      GiANT Certified Coach

Left: Click on the video to hear what Melisa Pearce, founder of EGCM, has to say about Myra! 

Right: Click on picture to hear podcast interview with Chris Angell