What you can expect from Life Coaching


Coaching is being someone’s personal confidante, guide and support as they move forward in life reclaiming their own viewpoint, direction, abilities, knowledge, responsibility, power, and freedom. The choice to live their lives to their highest potential. Helping them have the freedom to make their own unique contribution to the world.

When we begin to do what we want, it truly becomes a different kind of life!

With a Life Coach you can discover how to be more effective, more satisfied, and increasingly successful in the roles you play throughout life.

A life coach can help you…

  • Identify what you want in life
  • What you want to be
  • What you want to have
  • Design action plans
  • Help you identify and remove barriers
  • Reach your goals
  • Get things done
  • Prioritize and execute
  • Have a great time while achieveing new dreams



“Why is it so hard for most of us to ask for help?”

In working with clients for all sorts of services, they immediately responded with all kinds of excuses … and they all are Uncomfortably familiar.

Not only do I hear these excuses from clients all the time, but I often hear the same things in my own head!


I would be extremely shocked if you can honestly say you’ve never thought or even verbalized at least one of these excuses.
“I could really use Jane’s help with this, but I know how busy she is right now. I shouldn’t bother her. I wouldn’t want to impose.”
“I’ve got way too much on my plate right now, but I don’t want to burden other members of my team by delegating any of it.”
“I need to work harder to prove I’m capable of handling this. What’s wrong with me that I can’t do this on my own?
“I’m afraid I’ll look weak, unqualified, or even dumb if I ask for help. I should figure this out on my own so no one will know how much I’m struggling with this.”
The crazy thing about excuses is we convince ourselves that asking for help makes us inconsiderate, and shows that we’re not hard working or capable
There is only one thing all these reasons come down to, and that is just plain old FEAR! It’s scary to ask for help, to put yourself out there to be judged, ignored, laughed at, or rejected.


Having helped a multitude of others, I see how much people want to help others. We crave it as humans. To know that we’ve had an impact on someone’s life is the best feeling in the world!
In reality, my clients come to me because they are frustrated, feeling like they are inadequate, aren’t doing enough, and can’t make the difference they need/seek. They want to have positive outcomes and make an impact on others (especially those they love), but feel they just don’t know how?
So when you don’t ask for help, you’re actively blocking the people in your life from a potential sense of joy and fulfillment.
You can’t say, “I want to make a difference for others,” and never let others make a difference for you.
Imagine how sad your life would be if no one ever needed your help, guidance, advice, talent, love, or friendship. It would be a lonely, unfulfilling experience.
The greatest gift in life you can give someone is allowing them to help … allowing them to have a positive impact on your life.
And if you’re worried about looking “less than” or weak if you ask for help, realize this … most people will respect you when you ask for help, support, or feedback. Believe me, they will feel honored, flattered, validated, respected, loved and all kinds of things you would be robbing them of if you don’t ask.
Trying to do everything alone is a stressful, lonely place.

Two people are better than one, because they can reap more benefit from their labor.


As humans, we’re social creatures, and we crave connection, collaboration, and support. It’s just how we’re wired. And yet, we keep ourselves stuck, isolated, and overwhelmed when we cut ourselves off from the help of others.
More than ever, in our history, we try to do everything on our own and it’s flat-out unnatural. It’s driving us crazy, making us unhealthy, and leading to a greater mass feeling of isolation than ever before.
I’m here to tell you: You’re not meant to do it all alone! In fact, it’s high time that we all embraced the fact that we simply can’t do it all alone. And what a relief that is!

Do not withhold good from those who need it, when you have the ability to help.


So, how can we ask for help in a way that feels better for us and for the other person?
If you’re wondering the same thing, here are a few ways to make the whole experience feel more like a win-win:
Acknowledge their awesomeness. If you’re asking someone for help, advice, support, etc., it’s probably because you know they have something valuable to contribute. So let them know how amazing they are… Be honest about why you’ve chosen them as the best person to help. This is not about buttering them up. Don’t be fake, with forced compliments, but genuine, and give your heartfelt praise.
Be specific about what you need. Even people who really want to help you will have a hard time saying yes if they’re not fully sure what you’re asking for. Do you want them to do a quick read-through of your cover letter before you hit “send” on a job application, or are you asking for a full-out intensive edit? Be clear and specific, and you’ll avoid lots of misinterpretations and resentment down the road.
Give them an out. If you know someone is extremely busy or going through a tough time, it can feel even more uncomfortable to ask for their help. Sometimes, it can ease the pressure all around if you give them an out. Something as simple as, “I know you have a lot going on right now, so I completely understand if you can’t make time for this. No hard feelings!” They’ll be grateful for your acknowledgment … and that you gave them a choice.
Appreciate their effort. This one is pretty obvious, but still worth saying. Once they’ve offered their help, be grateful and show it! As I said earlier, people love to know that they’re making a difference and a positive impact on someone, so share with them how much they’ve helped ease your burden.

They help one another; one says to the other, ‘Be strong!’

I want to hear from you now: What stops you from asking for help? And how much of a relief would it be to finally ask for what you need?

Offering a helping hand to ‘special needs’ families

Special Needs NJ Family Services serves locals in Sussex County

Sussex County NJ Parent Advocate: Linda Leenstra


“Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.” This famous quote from “The Lorax” appears on the cover of a pamphlet for Special Needs NJ Family Services LLP in Andover. It serves as an important message and theme of the children’s advocacy agency, who believe that all children have the potential to succeed academically regardless of any “special needs.”

Be the change you want to see…Gandhi

Offering a helping hand For a parent, having a child who has been classified in school is usually an emotional experience fraught with confusion, questions and anxiety. The question, “What do we do next?” is raised, and parents can feel overwhelmed with paperwork, Individual Education Plans (IEP) interpretation, and meetings with Child Study Teams.

Helping a child to stay motivated, reach their potential, and like school can be a daunting task for mothers and fathers. Serving families throughout NJ but anchored in Sussex County, Special Needs NJ provides individual services to families who have a child in the school system with special needs. These services include Advocacy for the child, tutoring, life skills, ABA therapy, and now adding Life Coaching for parents and aging students.

The goal of Special Needs NJ, is to help parents navigate the sometimes confusing world of having a classified child, as well as making children aware that they have someone on their side.

“If you went to work everyday and were compared to the guy in the next cubicle, you would start to hate going to work,” says Special Educator, advocate, therapist, and life coach, Linda Leenstra, known warmly to her students as “Ms. Linda.”

“Everybody needs to understand that we are not all square pegs that fit neatly into the square hole. The American education system is so stuck on this concept that children begin to feel like there is something wrong with them; they don’t fit into the system,” says Leenstra. “Here at Special Needs NJ, we feel that individualism is a great thing!”

Classification:  In New Jersey, there are 14 different types of classifications within the education system. For parents, making sense of the terminology, and navigating a path toward well being for their child can be intimidating. Leenstra provides the important service of going into the schools with the parents and attending IEP meetings with the Child Study Team. She often encourages parents to bring a picture of their child to the meeting which helps keep the focus on why everyone is there. They are there for the child. “It is important for school systems to know that we are not working against them, but with them,” says Leenstra. “The best thing for a child is an educated parent, and our main drive is to educate parents on how to get their child in the right program.”

In an effort to help a child reach their potential, Special Needs NJ also will go into homes and provide, not only tutoring, and help with a specific subject, but life skills for children who have a learning disabilities, and behavioral training for both parent and child. Special Needs NJ can help train parents on how to deal with struggles their child may be going through, and provide encouragement to the child. The agency will also assist parents in organizing and understanding the paperwork and forms that comes with having a child who is classified.

Anniversary: as Special Needs NJ is entering it’s fifth year, they continue to grow and provide help to families in New Jersey. The agency also works on a sliding scale fee, and are individualized to a client’s needs. Leenstra regards her role as advocate and educator as more then a job, and establishes a strong connection to the families she works with.

“If you think about it, kids are always under scrutiny, always judged,” says Leenstra. “They are naturally free spirits who want to learn, explore, touch everything, but then they go to school and have their art work compared to other kids.” “For every negative statement made, we should always make five positive ones,” Leenstra advises. “People want to be complemented, not compared.”

For more information visit http://www.specialneedsnewjersey.com or call 973-5343402

Special Needs NJ provides a free consultation to discuss how their specialized services fit your individual needs.

Pictured: Linda Leenstra, Court Appointed Special Advocate, with Judge of Morris and Sussex County Courts NJcasa