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What is a career as a life coach really like?

Are you always looking for ways to boost your wellbeing? Do you devour self-development reading? Do your friends & family turn to you for advice and support?

These traits are the superpowers that all great life coaches possess. So if this is you – you might have wondered if this career path could be your next right move. 

But what is a career as a life coach really like? Do life coaches get paid well? And how do you start a coaching business?

Let’s find out, with this in-depth look at the day to day life & career prospects of a coach. Let’s jump in!

What is a life coach?

A sports coach helps athletes achieve their goals, using structured training sessions, advice, accountability and support. Life coaching is just that – but usually centres around a person’s goals. These could be relationship goals, business goals or simply getting themselves out of a rut. 

A great coach can also work towards helping their clients realise what is truly important to them in life, and determining how they get there. 

Importantly, life coaching isn’t therapy, however. Therapists are trained to take those who are suffering from illness or feeling dysfunctional, to feeling well and functional. Therapy is also often focused on the past. 

Coaching, on the other hand, is more about looking towards the future and taking someone from functioning to excelling at their goals.

What do life coaches do?

As a life coach, you could choose to join a larger organization, working within companies to help employees perform their best and reach their goals. Or you could choose to join an umbrella coaching service, employed by a larger company to work with their influx of clients. 

Many coaches choose to set up their own business, giving them creative control over their offerings, and allowing a more flexible work schedule. 

Whichever you choose, you could work one-on-one with clients or in group settings. In these sessions, you will help to clarify goals, obstacles, and action plans for your clients. Using strategies that allow them to affect change, checking in with them and ensuring they have accountability towards reaching their goal.

What skills do life coaches need?

  • Listening – Listening is probably the most important skill for any coach. Being able to determine your client’s issues & read between the lines if needed is key to choosing an approach that will really help them excel. A good listener helps clients feel supported and motivated. 
  • Empathy – To be able to identify with and support clients from all walks of life, a life coach will need natural empathy skills to help clients open up and move forward towards their goals. 
  • Focus – Being able to give a client your full attention is key, as missing any crucial details could lead to a breakdown of communication. 
  • Organisation – As an often self-led role, with lots of scheduling and timings that need to be adhered to, you’ll need to be adept at keeping an organized diary and staying on top of any preparation that needs to be completed before a session.
  • Business skills – Running a coaching business is just that – a business! So coaches need to learn fundamental business skills to truly succeed.

A day in the life of a life coach

In a way, no day is the same for a life coach, though many will perform the same tasks and duties daily. The beauty of running a coaching business is the ability to design your own schedule, creating the environment and schedule that allows you to thrive.

For example, you could choose to coach in person, or by phone, either working in an office environment or from home. You could also schedule client appointments at times that suit your lifestyle and other commitments – such as childcare. 

On a typical day, a coach will usually start the day by practising their skills in their own life. This could be making time to go for a morning hike, journaling and writing intentions or meditating. 

They will then start coaching clients. Depending on your workload and pricing, client work could take anywhere from 3-6 hours. This could be followed by administrative tasks and business marketing. 

Some coaches might choose to work with clients for longer on a part-time basis, say three days a week. They could then use the remaining days to focus on that business end of coaching. This could include attending to your social media, writing newsletters, following up on referrals, connecting with other coaches, writing a blog post or booking speaking events.

Do life coaches get paid well?

Often, life coaches charge an hourly rate to their clients. Hourly rates depend on experience, the local area & the niche of your coaching business. 

As an example, the average hourly rate for a relatively new life coach in New Zealand is around $40 an hour. If you saw 4 clients a day, 5 days a week, your salary could start at around $45,000. Once experienced, the average salary for a coach in New Zealand sits at around $80,000.

On top of this, coaches can charge speaking fees at events, create online courses as a passive income source and even become social media influencers to supplement and expand their income.

How to become a life coach?

Life coaches come from all sorts of backgrounds, and from all walks of life. If you have had experience in improving your physical or mental state, or are simply incredibly passionate about wellbeing and helping others – you are ready! In many cases, this life experience can really help coaches to target a specific niche that they are well placed to work in.

No formal training is required to practice as a life coach, however, all life coaches should definitely consider training. Without completing a life coach course, they could struggle to build traction, find clients and build a profitable business.

Training can help to hone your skills, offering clients the best possible service and impart strategies for growing your specific coaching practice. Training sharpens your offerings to clients, helps you carve out a space in the coaching world, and build trust with authentic qualifications that prove your ability to coach. 

If you are serious about becoming a coach, then you’ll want to check out our Life coaching & Health And Wellbeing certificate. Built by industry experts, it’s one of the most specific life coach courses available – especially if you want to include health & wellbeing in your business approach. Designed to refine your skills and help you offer the best service you can to your clients, it’s the best investment you’ll make for your business. 

You’ll be tutored through 18 key units designed to give you the skills you will need to either run your own business or work for a company in the space of life coaching. 

Starting with the key principles of goal setting and success, these strategies will equip you with the knowledge to help your clients that allow them to make meaningful changes in their life. Learn about health and wellbeing so you can improve your life and, additionally help others, as well as exploring fitness, nutrition, stress management & preventative health. All these are key areas that can transform your client’s perspective and progress towards their goals. 

As one of the leading life coaching courses online, you’ll have 24/7 access so you can learn at a time that suits you. Plus you can spread the cost of training with an affordable payment plan starting at just $25 a week. It’s never been easier to begin the first steps towards a fulfilling career helping others! Join us today.


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