After writing and deleting about six paragraphs about what this blog post will not be about, I am writing to share some stories and to ask for your help (thanks, Jen Lemen, for reminding me that I won’t regret it).
As most of you know, I am a life coach. When it comes to marketing, I have generally relied on fate, destiny, happenstance, coincidence, synchronicity, and pure accident when it comes to finding clients. The clients I do end up working with are amazing, normal, dream-filled human beings who usually need little more than someone to listen, help them see things from different perspectives, and remind them that what they want is not so crazy, unreasonable, and impossible as perhaps they’ve come to believe.
In fact, some of them have written about our coaching work together on their blogs. Come to think of it, other clients of mine have written really wonderful testimonials about our work together. While I do have a handful of testimonials from former clients on my website, I’m so eager to share these more recent ones. I am going to take a deep breath and do so today, without fear of “seeming” self-promoting.
But here’s the part where your help comes in. I am ready for help – fun, collaborative, unconventional, creative, crazy-ass help – in dreaming up (and even executing) new ways to share these stories and spread the word. I have a few ideas, but find myself hungering for more.
For today, though, I will take my own advice and start where I am with what I have. This blog, and these clients’ stories, in their own words:
Read on for additional testimonials about the process of coaching:
Mindy Clawson, a local writer, shared these words:
A friend recommended Jena when I was looking for a new direction in my career. While my work with her was brief, her guidance and support were invaluable. She has a completely unique way of looking at things, and the simple exercises she had me complete were quite doable and revealing, unlike similar exercises I’ve found elsewhere. She challenged me, supported me, and helped me look at my needs and talents from a different perspective.
That brief process prepared me, when an unexpected job opportunity came my way during our work together, to understand that even though it wasn’t the step I had envisioned, it met some of my most fundamental needs. She helped me sort through my concerns, hopes and dreams, so that I could — without reservation — offer up a resounding ‘yes!’ when I was offered the job. Working with Jena was genuine and affirming, and helped me synthesize several significant recent life experiences so that I could continue to move forward.
Doris Grippin, a writer, former stay-at-home mom, mammographer, and soon-to-be yoga teacher, shared her story:
Feeling stuck and dissatisfied with my life, I came across Jena Strong’s website while searching online for a Life Coach. I blindly emailed her and explained that I was a 50-year-old woman seeking advice for a midlife problem. ”Can you help me?” I asked.
My Life Coaching experience with Jena Strong was a very eye-opening one. With her guidance and support I was able to see how I was sabotaging my own happiness, and preventing myself from living my life fully. I was able to recognize and let go of the fear that was holding me back. My Life Coaching experience with Jena Strong has changed my life.
I would recommend Strong Coaching to anyone who is looking for a more fulfilling and purposeful life. If you are ready to change and grow, I highly recommend Jena Strong to be a mentor in your journey.
I had a great time working with John McConnell, a Web Developer, Kayaker, and Yoga Teacher. Here are his words:
I started having a weekly 1 hour meeting with Jena a few months ago. At the time I felt pretty lost where I was going in my life and basically was going to her saying that I wanted to quit my job and do something else. I had this goal of having her give me some step-by-step plan to get out of my funk and move on to another job. Well, that isn’t how she works, thank goodness!
It’s unlike any way of thinking I have actually ever done before. I guess it’s much more circular than in a direct line. I’ve always been somewhat of a goal oriented person with lists and steps. This isn’t that, which has been an incredible blessing, the reason being that if you have a list to go somewhere, that means you are narrowing your vision of where to go, and you might miss out and what you really should be doing or where you should be going.
What Jena and I did was basically look at life without borders each week, and she gave me homework to explore myself and who I am. You might think this wouldn’t “get” anywhere. Well, interestingly, right now I am on the verge of really moving on to the next phase of my life, going into a business partnership with someone. I’ll probably keep doing my current work, at least part-time. But I realized my current work is ok, I just need to have more. I know working with Jena has helped me to more recognize myself and my potential in life, and be confident in being myself and doing what fits with who I am.
She has helped me do this without over-interfering in my life. She’s been an enthusiastic guide; I’ve been the tourist taking it all in. In working with Jena I’ve realized, or remembered, that to make a real life change you might need to alter quite a few other things in what you are doing to actually change the thing you want to change. That is something that, for me, has been a great lesson.
So, I’d highly recommend working with Jena. My work with Jena have been very holistic work that is about finding out more about who I am so I can have a more complete, fulfilling life — in the end it really hasn’t been about how great of a coach she is, it’s really about how willing I am to see into myself and make a shift in my life. I feel like from our conversations I have what I was looking for, for now. I just need to keep moving forward and making life fun and memorable — I’m starting to do that! I’ve loved our conversations and it’s really helped me learn about who I am, and what I’m doing here.
I met Alexa Cole when she was an undergraduate at UVM. Now, she’s the Volunteer Coordinator at NARAL Pro-Choice California. She wrote:
Coaching work has never proved as therapeutic as with Jena Strong. She is more than a coach; she is a friend, a mentor, role model, and inspiration to me. She has taught me to question my judgments directed to myself and to be my number one strongest advocate. She has also helped me feel good about my work, both in my personal life and in my place of employment. There has been something missing for me in previous counseling scenarios, and I realize that with Jena she can hold emotional space while also counsel on my work in the outside world. This is incredibly important to me as a woman who feels constantly divided between my personal life and work.
There are more, but I will stop here for now.
What I realize is that I am so eager to share this work, to share myself, to share my clients’ stories as well as my own – and to learn yours. May this be a beginning. May these stories reach just the right people at the right moments.
Your comments and ideas will be received with gratitude. (And you can always email me.)
Image: Magpie Girl’s Values Mobile