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Meet Ileen Bocanegra, Author & Christian Life Coach

Today we’d like to introduce you to Ileen Bocanegra.

Ileen, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
In 2014, my world was rocked while attending this newly launched church where I had just become a member. It’s funny, I never fathomed what would come next. I had been in the middle of working on two romance novels, so sure of becoming the next Danielle Steel. For years, I had been writing short stories and had even written a small collection of children’s books. Never once had I attempted to publish any of my work. Often feeling not good enough, lacking in many areas, just so unsure of my own work. But one day, something shifted. Changes were taking place within me that was rattling me to the core. I began to feel God calling me to step into my purpose but felt so unqualified and unworthy of such a role.

One day, what started off as a journal entry while leaving church, took on a whole new course. Something just fueled a fire deep within me. I felt this desire unlike any other to just keep writing. At the time, I had found that while writing the romance novels my fire would often just fizzle out. The words would stop flowing and the storyline would just fade. But this time, the story I was writing was not some steamy romance. This was different. It was a story based on my own personal life. My journey with my faith. My journey with God. I couldn’t understand why or what purpose this served, but I just kept on writing. The fire was burning wild within me. I’d write during my lunch break at work, then come home and continue writing into the late midnight hours.

By 2016, I found myself in the editing phase, literally rewriting my entire book, It was during this time I began taking a course to become a Life Coach. But not just any Life Coach. A Christian Life Coach. I wanted my work to be rewarding… to be Christ-centered. I completed my course in mid-December and soon meeting with clients in my home, coaching them through their life’s challenges, all while building a more intimate relationship with God. My goals were changing and now I wanted to spend my days ministering to women, helping women break free from intimidating thoughts and expand their vision so they could see beyond their limitations. Steamy romances were completely out of my mind. I was so fired up on sharing with everyone what God had done for me and through me. I wanted women everywhere to see the challenges I had faced all those years and how far I had come along. All because I never gave up. I stood grounded in my faith.

In June of 2017, I took that leap of faith and left my full-time position as a Human Resource Manager and Accountant to pursue the beautiful visions I held nestled in my heart. To become a published author, leading women’s ministry, and coaching women globally in helping them realize their goals, dreams, and vision. It was all happening so fast, and within a six month period, I had accomplished each of these goals. I had transitioned from working in a corporate world 9-5 to becoming a self-published author, women’s ministry leader, and Christian Life Coach.

Today, I serve as the founder and Bible teacher of Living Encouraged, author of “My Journey With God,” along with numerous Bible study series that include, “Becoming a Woman of Courage” & “Utterly Perfectly Imperfect.” Through my blog, psstGodLovesYou.com, I offer encouragement, inspirational messages that reach women globally. I now enjoy a rewarding career serving others while coaching them, leading them to move towards realizing their purpose, visions, and goals. Through my successful coaching methods, I help women in empowering their mind to build growth and success, mastering an innovative approach to achieving a breakthrough that leads them to the next level.

When I look at where my journey began, how unsure of myself and insecure I was, it inspires me to help others overcome that very same battle. I never imagined that setting foot in this small church would spark something so incredibly amazing that would boost me to a whole new level I never once envisioned for my life. What started off as a desire for romance led to a beautiful relationship with Christ and women all around. I believe that anything you envision you can achieve, the moment you truly believe.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc. – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
It’s funny you should ask. This journey has been far from smooth. During the first year of writing my book, I would often find myself in tears wondering why was I even bothering to write this story. Who would read it? Did I even know what I was doing? Self-doubt often crept in and those thoughts to just delete the entire manuscript would tend to surface. I struggled with finding a publisher, especially for the genre I was writing in.

Once I opted to self-publish my book I ran into a few more potholes, to say. I literally had to take crash courses via YouTube to learn the ins and outs of self-publishing. From self-publishing my book, creating a beautiful eye-catching cover, developing a website for my coaching business, teaching weekly Bible studies in my home, all while raising a family, had its many challenges. But I firmly believe that with anything, you will face challenges. It’s a matter of endurance and fighting the fight to keep pressing forward.

So, as you know, we’re impressed with Ileen Bocanegra, Author & Christian Life Coach – tell our readers more, for example, what you’re most proud of and what sets you apart from others.
My business is serving women at a capacity that evokes encouragement, inspiration, and empowerment, all while growing closer in their relationship with God. As a Christian Life Coach, I work primarily with women but have also worked with teenagers both female and male. I love knowing that when they leave a session with me, they leave feeling confident and encouraged to chase those dreams. But not just to chase them, but capture them, making them a reality. I love helping them to realize that those imposed limitations are breakable and they can achieve greater heights in life.

Being a Christian author and Bible teacher is what most people recognize me for. This is what they see daily through social media, my own personal website, and through the Living Encouraged podcast. While I enjoy writing stories that are uplifting and encouraging, I take pure joy in creating Bible study series that lead women to Live Life Intentionally…with Purpose, as they engage and share in the Biblical truths of God’s word. Every morning I enjoy sharing uplifting messages that encourage others to step out from whatever circumstances they are facing and tackle them head-on, bold and courageous.

So, what’s next? Any big plans?
Hum… I have a vision board where I laid out a few of my future goals/plans. So far, I have successfully completed the top half of that vision board. I am currently in the process of publishing the “Becoming a Woman of Courage” Bible study series that I taught earlier this year. I feel we need more Bible study guide resources available to us, that today’s generation can totally relate to. I do have a targeted goal for mid-2019, to have my second book “Utterly Perfectly Imperfect” published, along with the Bible study series that pairs along with it.

One of the big changes I see coming is the Living Encouraged Ministry. This ministry is growing into a new phase that I believe will reach new heights in the coming year. As part of the 2019 visions, I see seminars and conferences coming together through Living Encouraged and hopefully, sometime next year, take my journey to Israel.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Minor Details Photography

Getting in touch: VoyageHouston is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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