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How to train as a life coach: Steps and Advice

Do you love helping people to become more than who they are? Do your family and friends always run to you and ask for your advice? Are you interested to know how to train as a life coach and get paid for it?

According to the 2016 report from the International Coach Federation (ICD), the average annual income of a life coach is about $61,900, and there are about 17,500 life coaches in North America. This type of business is starting to grow in the U.S., especially that there are a lot of baby boomers and female clients who are seeking expert advice about relationships, spirituality, business, and career.

Life coaches guide their clients by reinstalling their self-confidence through empowerment so that they can use the full potential in reaching their goals. Life coaches are not only good at giving advice and listening actively to their clients, but they are also good when it comes to being entrepreneurs. They are leaders of their own—they help make successful leaders, and to do that, they should be a leader of their senses.

Life coaching might sound intimidating. But if you learn the proper skills and enjoy communicating with others, then life coaching can be a fruitful career for you.

life coach during therapy session with female patient

Here are some necessary steps you will need to become a life coach.

1. Find your niche.

Life coaching is a broad field. You can choose any area that you want to pursue, but you need to ensure that you are an expert in that specific area. If you are an expert in a particular field, you can guide your clients on the right path as you are able to offer them well-curated advice.

You should also do some research about the market of your niche and make sure that you have a large target to become successful. If you still have not made up your mind on what niche you are going to choose, here are some of the common niches in life coaching:

  • Business coaching
  • Career coaching 
  • Dating coaching
  • Relationship coaching
  • Divorce coaching
  • Financial coaching
  • Health coaching
  • Personal coaching
  • Retirement coaching

Also, you may consider some of the profitable life coaching niches to simplify your search and gain inspiration.

2. Take advantage of life coaching tutorials.

Although you do not need a degree to become a life coach, certification and training will still make you stand out. Life coaching training can be a bit expensive. That is why before you spend thousands and dollars for these training, you should try to take advantage of life coaching tutorials and online courses, just like what we have listed below.

It is better to make small investments and learn what you can about life coaching. You can also apply what you have learned from these tutorials and online courses to your friends and family members who need advice. By doing this, you will discover your personal interests and strengths, as well as the life coaching niche that is a perfect fit for your skills and knowledge.

3. Obtain your credentials through training. 

The life coaching industry does not have that strong regulation, and anyone who has a passion for helping people and solving their problems can become a life coach. However, it does not mean that you are skilled enough to practice in this field. In fact, there are untrained and incompetent life coaches that are damaging the reputation of this industry. 

If you want to start your business or work as a life coach, then being credible and getting certified is a must. The International Association of Coaching (IAC) and the International Coach Federation (ICF) are just two of the most popular organizations that provide such certifications to professional life coaches. These organizations offer certifications for those who are able to complete the explicit training programs.

For example, the ICF offers three (3) levels of life coaching credentials, such as:

  • Associate Certified Coach (ACC)
  • Professional Certified Coach (PCC)
  • Master Certified Coach (MCC)

The IAC offers three (3) professional designations:

  • Masteries Practitioner Designation
  • Certified Masteries Coach
  • Master Masteries Coach (MMC)
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How to train as a life coach?

A life coaching session or training comes in different forms. Some life coaches meet their clients in person, while some perform their coaching services through video calls and phone calls. 

Most life coaches aim to fulfill the following in each of their sessions:

  • Building a strong professional rapport with a client starts with encouraging them to talk about what they want, need, and expect to your life coaching session or training. This is also a perfect way to figure out whether you are the right life coach to help your client.
  • Being an active listener, paying attention to every word the client is saying and observing their body language as well.
  • Engaging clients to participate in every session.
  • Encouraging clients to challenge themselves, develop critical strengths and obtain valuable skills. 
  • Helping clients set realistic goals.
  • Providing proper feedback to clients to decide on their goals, challenges, career, etc.

Finally, the main role of a life coach is to train their clients to become optimistic and always be motivated to face any roadblocks. Your client should feel empowered and ecstatic after your life coaching session. 

If you are just starting as a life coach in the business, it would be helpful that you offer your coaching services for free. You can either offer private coaching or group coaching. This will help you build your reputation and gather testimonials.

Most importantly, you as a life coach should preserve your integrity. Life coaching is all about building trust. 

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About The Author

Esther B.

Esther B.

Esther is a writer whose work focuses on career and personal development. She has also been YourTango’s Expert Partner where she wrote articles mostly for women to encourage them to have a meaningful life and healthier relationships. Her articles were constantly in YourTango’s weekly top ten for highest number of page views and her works have been featured in MSN and POPSUGAR. She also has almost 8 years of experience working for top publishing companies (Wiley and Cengage Learning) helping authors publish their books and research papers. When she is not on the computer, you’ll likely find her in the kitchen busy looking for snacks to eat.