How To Become a Life Coach


Thinking about becoming a life coach? 

Life coaching is a lucrative and rewarding career field that is growing by the year. There is a lot of information out there about the life coaching profession, and it can be difficult to know where to start.   If you are wondering how to become a life coach, take these 5 steps as you explore if it’s the right career for you. 

5 Steps on How to Become a Life Coach

Step 1: Assess Your Personality Traits and Skills 

Before you make the leap into life coaching, it’s smart to assess if your personality traits and skills match those necessary for the job. Although coaches can come from all different backgrounds, there are some qualities and abilities that most possess or develop before entering the career. 

Top Qualities and Skills of a Life Coach

    • Curious 
    • Adept listeners
    • Good verbal and written communicators
    • Empathy 
    • Extreme care and love for helping others 
    • Skilled questioners
    • Intuitive

You can delve further into the self-assessment by asking yourself a number of key questions. Although not an exhaustive list, the questions below hit on critical issues that are important to explore before embarking on your new career. They help you assess your aptitude for coaching as well as your ability to manage the business-building aspect of starting your coaching practice.

Self-Assessment Questions for Prospective Life Coaches 

What is motivating me to want to start a career as a life coach?

What is my commitment level to growing a business from the ground up?

Am I comfortable with growth that might not come quickly?

Am I comfortable doing the marketing, networking and other business development activities that will be required to make this a success?

How much money do I need to make ends meet?

Do I have the support of family, friends, mentors or other coaches to help me through this process?

How do I feel during the coaching career exploration process? Is it fun, exciting and motivating? Or is it uncomfortable and uninspiring? 

Step 2: Explore Your Personal Goals 

One of the biggest challenges of starting any business is the unknown. While some businesses explode right from the start, many others take persistent time, energy and money to grow over time. As a prospective coach, it is important to get very clear on your personal and financial goals. When you know what you’re striving for, it becomes easier to create a plan and to achieve it.

Review your financials. Get clear on how much money you need and how much money you would like to earn each year. Are you wanting a part-time job or a side hustle? Is your goal to create a full-time life coaching empire? 

Goal clarity will be key as you begin to identify the education and skills you need to achieve success. It will also help as you plan how to grow and market your business in the future. 

Step 3: Determine Your Niche 

Establishing a niche for your coaching practice allows you to become highly specialized in helping the kinds of clients you really want to work with. While this might seem premature at this point, it is helpful to think about the kinds of clients that really light you up. 

When you have a clear understanding of your coaching niche, you can more effectively research life coaching training and certification programs as well as other educational opportunities. Find out if the program provides direct training, resources or mentors related to your chosen niche. This will ensure that you are getting the training and networking opportunities you need after completing your program. 

There are so many coaching niches out there! Some popular options you may consider include: 

    • Small business owners
    • Young adults
    • Executives
    • Single mothers
    • Career or career transitions
    • Marriage and divorce
    • Spiritual
    • Productivity and performance
    • Health and wellness

Step 4: Research Certification Programs

If you haven’t already realized, research is key on your journey to becoming a life coach. Although there are coaches who haven’t received formal training, life coaching certification programs are critical if you wish to create a career out of coaching. 

There are many programs out there and some are better than others. It is vital that you research a variety of programs to determine which is the best fit for you. It is recommended that you choose a program that is accredited by the International Coach Federation, so you can feel confident that the program is of a high quality. 

Contact the programs you are interested in and speak to one of their program coordinators to learn more about the curriculum, the time commitment, requirements, online or distance learning options, networking opportunities, cost and marketing training. 

Step 5: Prepare for Starting Your Business 

The final step is to plan and prepare for starting your own business. Identify other professional educational opportunities that would complement your coaching training such as accounting, online marketing or entrepreneurship. Identify any networking groups that may benefit you as you build your business. If you’ve considered a niche, identify where you may be able to find these clients and how you may be able to connect with them. 

Consider financial concerns that may present themselves during the business-building process. Do you intend to work full-time and take courses in the evenings? Will you keep your day job while going through the certification program? Creating a plan, whether that means keeping your day job for a time or saving up a nest egg so you can focus completely on your program, will help you organize yourself around your new venture.  

Are You Ready?

If you have more questions about what it takes to become a life coach, call one of the program experts at Life Purpose Institute today.

When you’re ready to get started, our team can tell you about the incredible life coaching programs offered at our ICF-accredited coach training school.

Don’t wait to start your new career. Call Life Purpose Institute today at 858.484.3400.

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