Case Studies of Coaching Clients

I'm sharing these case studies of my clients so that those who are interested in working with me can read about the kinds of issues my clients are having when them come to me. They also get to read about the types of outcomes they get from working with me. This is my attempt to help you decide if you and I might be a good fit for each other as coach and client, and if my program seems right for you.

At the moment there's only one case study but there will be more! It takes a while to pull one all together so it will probably be a few weeks before the next one appears. If you want to be notified, sign up for my email list on this page.


Private Boundaries Coaching Client
Case study – Maria


Maria is not this client’s real name and some of her details have been changed to protect her anonymity.



Maria said her most difficult issue regarding boundaries was people-pleasing rather than taking care of herself, particularly with men. Boundaries with her dad have been tough all her life and translated to her marriage, colleagues, etc.

She came to me wanting to stop manipulating others and to learn to ask to get her needs met. Her most pressing issue was learning how to create healthy boundaries at work because she might want to change careers. Her dad had some recent very serious health issues that greatly affected him, and she was in a care giver role. Since she’d always wanted to please him, boundaries with him were particularly challenging.

What she was hoping for was less frustration and more control so she could love more intentionally, balance work with self-care and do the work she wants instead of what people want her to do. She wanted to feel more intentional and have purpose and still have time in her life for things she enjoys. She wanted the feeling of freedom that would come from having more time for leisure and hobbies. She enjoys feeling connected and doing things with others, and being in the moment and wanted more of that.

A strategy she tried on her own that didn’t work included what she called “middle finger detachment.” She said it nearly worked in that she wasn’t dealing with thee other person’s junk, but then she had no relationship with that person which wasn’t what she wanted.

Strategies she tried that did work included changing the way she interacts with a colleague who didn’t communicate well about timing and showed up at the last minute. She asked for timing several times and when that didn’t work, she sent an email saying, “This doesn’t work for me, so I’m not going to work on this this coming summer but would like to stay connected.” They still have a working relationship but it’s not close.

Some of the goals she had in building healthy boundaries were that she wanted to change the dynamic with a superior who had been challenging and very assertive. She wanted to be able to work with and walk away from their discussions without feeling like she was taken advantage of. She wanted to feel empowered and like there was common ground and common goals had been met. She wanted to be assertive without being angry. She also wanted to be able to leave a conversation with a clear boundary and feel positive rather than guilty or second guessing herself, knowing she took good care of herself. She looked forward to being able to set boundaries more naturally and easily.

She saw her biggest obstacles as knowing what strategies to use (particularly with men) and accountability with practicing. She said setting boundaries felt uncomfortable (like walking naked). She believed that what prevented her from breaking through this pattern was her negative self-talk. She’d get angry and blame and demonize the other person and nothing would change. Her fears were that she wouldn’t be able to live out her dreams and purpose because she was too busy helping everyone else with their dreams.



Here’s what Maria had to say after our work together.

I came into coaching with Barb burnt out and ready for change. I was trying so hard at work, with family and in my marriage but still feeling sad and angry much of the time . After working through the 12 steps in my recovery program, I saw that I needed to be honest with myself and others, and ask for what I need rather than replaying old patterns of manipulation and people pleasing. I needed help on how to do that.

I heard Barb on a podcast, looked up her podcast and website and decided to work with her to learn how to build better boundaries, and to stop people pleasing and manipulating. I feel like my Higher Power put Barb in my life at the right time.

I learned that by getting clear on my values, and finding and prioritizing my integrity in those values, my boundaries became more clear and my ability to set them became easier. Barb taught me concrete strategies to say my boundaries and follow through on them. She helped me understand they are FOR me, not AGAINST anyone.

I’m learning how my boundaries are the map I can share with others to build intimacy in my relationships, rather than being quiet and growing resentment in my old ways of interaction. I’m learning to grow intimacy rather than resentment.

After coaching, I’m growing and experiencing closer relationships with friends and family, and letting go of old patterns that were harmful to me and others. I feel a new freedom. I have more peace and deep connection in my relationships with others and myself from working with Barb, who gave me the  necessary tools and strategies to help me get there. I’m grateful for my coaching experience with Barb. She helped me change my life and my relationships in positive ways.

Maria realized after getting clear on her values that she and her husband were not aligned in their values. This was particularly true financially. She then decided that staying married to her husband was no longer sustainable for her. They separated on good terms and are now divorced and Maria contacted me to tell me she’d gone – alone – do an event that she really loved and was going to more. She was really enjoying her life and her purpose.

Maria also set boundaries at work so she could focus on projects that she really enjoyed and that would lead to her getting promoted. Previously, she always gave the time she’d set aside for such projects to others and never got her own work done.



Maria worked with me for 12 weeks through my private boundaries coaching program. She continued working with me monthly for a while as part of my alumni private coaching program where we tailored the coaching to her specific needs since there’s no specific curriculum. I have tons of content that covers topics other than boundaries (e.g., overcoming victim mentality, developing consistent self-care practices, letting go of unrealistic expectations), some of which I shared with her during her 12-week coaching program and the monthly coaching sessions.

I developed the curriculum of this program and it’s multi-media, including slide decks, podcast episodes, articles and a workbook with weekly training exercises. Maria got lots of tailored feedback from me about her specific situations, issues and relationships on our calls. She also got on-the-spot coaching with me as needed through our private messaging app where she could text me or leave me a voice memo anytime. I helped her keep track of her progress and hold herself accountable with a shared online bulletin board. If you or someone you know can identify with what Maria was going through and would like to have the kinds of changes she had, you can sign up for a 30-minute call with me at your convenience to see if we’d be a good fit for each other as coach and client.



Listen to an actual coaching session with Barb: