As a life coach of
some years standing, I am frequently emailed by
people with queries about becoming a life coach.
So, I have recently put together a regular
newsletter with information about the kinds of
considerations which I believe you should take
into account before you try to launch yourself
into a coaching career.
This article gives an introduction to some of
the preliminary issues that it may be worth you
bearing in mind if you are thinking of being a
My FIRST TIP would
be that you think about your motivation for
wanting to become a coach.
Some of the promotional material provided by
life coach training courses and other
organisations can give the impression that
coaching is a career where it is easy to
establish yourself and make a lot of money in a
short space of time. Well, my experience and
that of most coaches I know is that you can make
a reasonable living from it, but like any other
business becoming a life coach takes time,
effort and perseverance.
So if your primary motivation is to make
money easily then I would wish you good luck but
suggest that you find yourself an alternative
On the other hand, if your primary motivation
is to help people to make changes in their life
or to deal with specific stresses or anxieties
or difficulties in career or relationships, then
I would encourage you to explore further. For
most coaches the greatest rewards are in
providing a helpful supportive service to people
and seeing the benefits that coaching can bring.
The personal satisfaction in being able to help
people achieve and set personal goals is what
makes coaching worthwhile.
My SECOND TIP is to
give careful thought to the training that is
appropriate for you.
There are a great number of coach training
providers offering courses out there for people
wanting to be life coaches. Some of these are
extremely professional and good courses, others
less so, so you need to check them out. Bear in
mind also that different individuals will
require different levels of training.
If you have experience already in a related
professional area, such as counselling or
psychology, then you are likely to have
different training needs from someone who is
completely new to this kind of work.
Make a list of what you want and need to get out
of a coach training course (or any other course
in a specialist coaching field that you feel is
relevant to you). Look at a range of different
If possible, get feedback from people who
have attended the courses as to their good and
bad points and seek recommendations from anyone
you know and trust who is already a life coach
or has reliable information about the options.
My THIRD TIP is for
those who are intending to set up their own life
coaching practice rather than to work as an
employee for an organisation.
If you don't have experience of creating your
own business then this may well be an area that
you need to focus as much time on as learning
specific coaching skills.
Do you have ideas about how you are going to
market your coaching business successfully? Have
you worked out how many clients you will need
and what rates you will charge for coaching
sessions in order to make the profit you require
to support a reasonable lifestyle? Are you
familiar with any legal requirements about
running a business, submitting tax returns etc?
If you are not yet sure about these and other
aspects of a business then either check that the
coach training courses you are considering teach
these skills and areas of knowledge, or else
work out another plan for how you will learn
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