Life Coaching Case Studies

Working with a life coach is a powerful, personal experience.

These case studies provide an insight into the kinds of situations that my clients come to me for help with. Of greatest benefit are the solutions they came to as a result of coaching with me. (All names and locations have been changed.)

If something you read resonates, if it touches a part of your life that you would like to change, then please spend time exploring the site and then jump over to the Discovery Page where you will have the opportunity to book a complimentary session with me.

Achieving Your Goals Through Coaching

Make Sure Your Goals Are Not Doing a Tug-of-War

Amelia was 34 when she came to me for coaching around her goals.

She told me she loved to travel. Her career goal was to be National Sales Manager for her company which would involve a lot of interstate and overseas travel and being away from home for days, even weeks, at a time.

Amelia and her partner had also set a goal to start a family by the time she was 35.

You guessed it! The two goals were simply not compatible if she was to give both her career and her desire to be a parent the time and attention they needed.

The result was that Amelia never seemed to have the real motivation she needed to achieve her career goal and it was never quite the right time to start a family.


Through coaching she became aware that it was the conflict between her goals was causing the stalemate. So I asked her: "What in your heart of hearts, you really want the most, your career or starting a family?"

The family option won out as the priority. Amelia came to realise that if she kept going this way - being pulled in two directions by conflicting goals - her career goal would stall and having a family could become one of those "some-day" goals that might never happen.

She chose to reorganize her career goal to something just as stimulating and rewarding but without the travel component. Her love of overseas travel would now be satisfied by family vacations.

What goals do you have that conflict, preventing you having life the way you really want it? Please contact me for a Discovery Session to see how we can work together to re-sort your goals and life plans!

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Achieving Your Goals Through Coaching

Remember To Celebrate The Goals You Achieve

Jack, a lawyer, came to a workshop I was running on setting and achieving goals. When I asked the participants to share their achieved goals, Jack gloomily said he couldn’t think of any goals he had achieved to share with the group.

I knew he must have a law degree, so in the break I asked him if he had every really acknowledged achieving this goal and all the hard work it took.

Jack told me that he had studied long and hard at university with a goal to get his law degree first time around. But he revealed that when he passed with honours, he let it pass without any celebration. After all, it was only what was expected of him by his high achieving family.

Jack immediately put all his energy into finding a position within a law firm and being a success at it. He did well but never feel particular successful.



The lights went on for Jack when he saw that he had glossed over this major achievement, (as well as several sporting wins).

His energy changed and everyone in the workshop could see and feel it. He realized he had had sailed past several achieved goals without acknowledgement.

A New Motivation

Jack committed to celebrating those lost and forgotten achieved goals by buying a new sound system for his car and a special dinner with his wife.

He was then back in achiever mode in the workshop and ready to set a new goal.

What goals have you achieved and never really acknowledged. Go celebrate!

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Life Coaching For Career and Job Advancement

The Stress Of Working In The Wrong Environment

Jane came to me for coaching because she couldn't understand how her dream job could have turned out to be such a nightmare.

For a long time she had a goal to work for a company that organised motivational seminars. She had participated in several of their events and loved the self-discovery and growth principles of the organisation. When she got the job as operations manager she was over the moon.

A job is not always the RIGHT job!

But, disaster! Her joy didn’t last long.

Although well qualified for the position, she found the pace and demands of the busy office and running a team too really overwhelming and stressful. She started dreading each day and often came home in tears.

Jane was very confused. What had gone wrong with her dream? What was wrong with her?

Using one of my favorite coaching tools (and the ones my clients say are the most helpful), I helped Jane to clarify values and discover and acknowledge her core needs.

Make sure your job fits with your own needs

Through this process she recognized that, while her values included personal growth, health and service -the same as the organization that employed her, she also had a real need for harmony and peace. These needs were not being met in the long, pressure-filled, team leading days of her new job and this was causing her stress.

Armed with this new awareness Jane decided to leave the pressure filled office environment. She got a less demanding job that was still in line with her values and also decided and study to become a naturopath.

Her new goal not only reflected her values of personal growth and health but could be achieved in an environment that was more compatible with her need for harmony and peace.

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Achieving Your Goals Through Coaching

How The Wrong Goal Can Cause Stress

A common life coaching goal is writing a book. Image shows book in a shop window
Phillipa came to me for coaching because her goal to write about her amazing life had stalled and she was finding it a chore. She had started out all enthusiastic. It was what she felt she should do at her time of life, and with such a fascinating story to tell.

Everybody in her circle said she should because she had so much information and wisdom to share. She was quite enthusiastic in the beginning but it never really flowed and her efforts soon diminished to a trickle of words.

She felt terrible about it all. People kept asking her ‘How’s the book coming on?’ So she forced herself to keep going, convinced it was something she had to finish.

A 'should' is not an authentic goal

The truth that came out with my coaching was that Phillipa had never really wanted to write a book! She felt no burning need to put it all out there. Her goal was based on other people’s opinions and expectations.

When she came to realize this, she made the choice not to continue writing and let the goal go. She was proud of, and comfortable with that decision.

Make sure your goals are authentic

The moral of this case study is to check our any goal you set to make sure it is something you really want and not something you or other people think you should do.

Are they something you really want to achieve for yourself?

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Life Coaching And Starting Your Own Business

Frances jumps the corporate ship to start her own business.

Frances had a great job with a good salary. But she was fed up with working for a boss in a large organization. She felt unfulfilled and had for years wanted to have her own business and follow her passion for fashion.

She decided to risk giving up a lucrative senior corporate marketing career to follow her dream of creating a unique and stylish fashion accessory.

Balancing boulders representing the balancing act of small business and how life coaching can help.
She engaged me as her coach to help her get clear on the process of starting her own business.

Where is all my support?

Early in the coaching series Frances faced the challenge that she no longer had an assistant or a multitude of departments available to her at the press of a button to use as a resource or pass her problems onto for solution.

She now had the sole responsibility for planning, designing, manufacturing, marketing, administration, accounts and distribution.

To do and not to do

I worked with Frances on a process to clarify what her strengths were (in this case designing, marketing and production). We then discussed how she would fill in the gaps by outsourcing the things with which she was not familiar or skilled in and would not be the best use of her time.

Full steam ahead

Armed with this clarity, she decided to outsource immediately the setting up of accounting systems and getting a cleaner (she was starting off from a home office). She also took on a virtual assistant to help her with research on the best path for manufacturing and distribution.

This freed her head space and time up to concentrate on the most vital part of her new business - designing those amazing fashion accessories.

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Regaining Your Lost Confidence

One of the first things I do with my clients is have them look back and see if there are any failed goals in their history, that they still feel bad about, that could be blocking them from moving forward.

Leah's Story

This was the case with Leah (not her real name) - a client whose goal to successfully transition from being a teacher to a corporate trainer went horribly wrong. She decided to coach with me because her confidence was completely shot and she felt like a failure. Leah had been over the moon with delight when she achieved her goal of getting a job with an organisation specialising in change management, motivation and team building. So far so good....

Then, disaster struck.

In the first workshop that she was allowed to lead on her own, Leah came up against a difficult and disruptive participant.

Because of her lack of experience, and the difference between teaching and facilitating, she did not handle the situation well! On the evaluation forms that participants fill out at the end of a workshop, some of the comments were pretty scathing.


The training organisation, in a fit of overzealous damage control, fired her.

Leah was devastated. She wanted to throw in the towel and go back to teaching.

Her confidence in herself was shattered so she decided life coaching with me might help.

How I coached Leah

When Leah told me what had happened, I coached her through my failed goal clean-up process and she came to acknowledge that she was not going to get everything right first time as a trainer. There were going to be lots of learning experiences (maybe not as severe as the first one) to benefit from. Together we reviewed that dreadful day and how the drama had unfolded. Then I helped her work out a couple of strategies she could have used to better handle the difficult participant and keep the rest of the people in the workshop engaged with her.

Confidence Renewed

When Leah came to a frame of mind where she could look back on the reason for her failed goal and view it as "a mistake I now don’t have to make", her energy and motivation for her training career returned. She reset her goal and it wasn’t long before she was back on track with renewed confidence. She soon became in demand as a confident and successful trainer.

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Wendy Buckingham's Life Coaching Services

My Life Coaching Services deliver confidence, motivation and results so you can develop the life you want.

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