As Tony Robbins so eloquently put it, “by changing nothing, nothing changes.” In today’s high-pressure society, increasing numbers of us yearn for a change or want to unlock something that is hidden deep within. This can be a difficult if next to impossible task to accomplish single-handedly, which is why many people turn to a life coach. If you’ve thought of becoming a life coach to help people on this journey, here is some valuable information about the vocation and the process of becoming a certified life coach.
What is a Life Coach?
A life coach is a professional who helps their clients both identify and reach life-changing goals. As a life coach, you’ll learn how to ask questions of clients that will take them through an evaluation process, which will identify areas in need of attention and change. You’ll also act as a strategist, motivator, and accountability partner so that goals are met with the least amount of distraction. As a life coach, you’ll not only help clients to work through changes and navigate obstacles, but you’ll also give them permission to follow their dreams and make life-altering decisions.
Do Life Coaches Specialize in Certain Areas?
Life coaches can absolutely specialize in certain areas. These can be specialties that you may have prior earned credentials or even professional background in or they may be areas of special interest to you. For example, a personal life coach might specialize in areas such as spirituality, grief, divorce, anger management, or eating disorders. There are also business coaches who focus more on helping executives achieve career goals or even business expansion. If this is your area of interest, some specialties include leadership, team building, negotiation, and corporate development.
How Does Life Coaching Work?
Life coaching can work in several ways, and you can choose which method works best for you and your clients. One-on-one coaching is the most common, where you have regularly scheduled sessions with your client. Depending on logistics, these can take place in person, online, or via telephone. During these sessions, you’ll discuss the client’s goals as well their progress and results in achieving results since your last meeting. Any roadblocks are dissected as well as action plans to bypass obstacles and achieve further progress moving forward. Success principles are discussed in these sessions and motivation provided for the next hurdles on their action plan.
Another common form of life coaching is group coaching. In this format, you’ll either have a live group meeting or set up a conference call with several clients, where you discuss success principles and answer individual questions. While less intimate and in-depth, you can serve more clients at once and clients are given the benefit of learning from each other’s experiences and bonding in a community setting.
What are the Benefits of Being a Life Coach?
While you may wish to become a life coach to help others, you’ll be pleased to learn that life coaching is one of the most rewarding professions on many levels. Above all else, life coaches seem to love what they do and genuinely enjoy working with clients who are seeking positive change in their lives. Beyond this, life coaches have the freedom to work from anywhere they wish and can expand their business at any pace they desire.
Life coaching has become a popular part-time vocation of baby boomers in retirement who have decades of both professional and life lessons to share with potential clients. According to a study by PriceWaterhouseCoopers and the International Coaching Federation, approximately 39 percent of coaches in North America are aged 55 or older. Certified life coaches can earn anywhere from $100 an hour starting out to as much as $500 an hour for experienced professional coaches who have executive clients.
How Can I Become a Life Coach?
If you’ve decided that you want to become a life coach, there’s more to it than simply hanging out your shingle. While there are some very sparse training programs on the market, relying on one of these could be irresponsible at best. If you truly wish to serve your clients, and your career, consider investing in training by a reputable organization, such as the Certified Coaches Federation. These training programs prepare future life coaches both to become effective coaches and to run a successful coaching business. The individual credentialing from the International Coach Federation is another important step in establishing yourself as your business begins to take on new clients.
If you have a passion for helping others and want to turn that into your vocation, becoming a life coach might be the perfect choice. This flexible, and very lucrative, career can both put you in the driver’s seat of your own destiny while you help others achieve their goals and experience lives that they imagined were out of reach.