Why Hire a Life Coach?
You’ve been feeling stuck for a long time, and you’re done with struggling on your own.
You know it’s time to hire a life coach, take action, and start living the life you’ve always dreamed of.
But with so many life coaches out there, how do you choose the right one for you?
I’ve put together my top 10 qualities to look for in a life coach to make your decision as easy as possible.
Let’s dive right into it.
Life Coaching Services Online
Thanks to the power of the internet, the help of a professional life coach is just a click away, with most coaches nowadays offering online coaching services.
This is great because it gives you access to some of the world’s top coaches, even if you live in a different country.
But with so many options available, how do you pick just one?
Start to narrow down your choice by thinking about what you need help with.
- a career move
- a more fulfilling love life
- going through a life transition such as a divorce or bereavement
- a decision you have to make
- improving your work-life balance
- or you want to take your business to the next level…
You just have to find them.
What Services Does a Life Coach Offer?
Many life coaches offer a range of services, while others specialize in particular niches.
Most offer a set coaching program with a determined number of sessions over a set period of time, usually from 3 to 12 months, depending on your goals.
Services may include:
- finding your purpose and mission in life
- career or business coaching
- help with navigating big life changes such as separation or divorce
- relationship coaching
- decision coaching
- health, wellness, and work life balance coaching.
How Much Do Life Coaches Charge?
How much you can expect to pay for life coaching services largely depends on their training and experience.
Usually, a more experienced coach will charge more than one who is just starting out, so prices vary anywhere from $25 to $300 per hour, with some high-end coaches charging thousands for just one session.
Since coaches set their own rates, they tend to vary widely and depend on each coach’s qualifications, track record, and specialization.
What to Look for When Choosing a Life Coach
You should always look for a qualified, reputable coach with a proven track record.
Reputable coaching training courses include
- International Coach Federation (ICF),
- Tony Robbins’ results coach training course,
- Marisa Peer’s Rapid Transformational Coaching,
- The Life Coach School by Brooke Castillo, and the
- Milton-Erickson Institutes, among many others.
Professional coaches usually list their coaching services on their websites, along with testimonials from former clients to show their credentials.
A good coach will also never pressure you into working with them.
They will explain to you how they work, be transparent about the price, and leave it up to you to decide.
If they try to pressure you – run!
Top 10 Qualities to Look For in a Life Coach
1. Has Great Listening Skills
The number one most important skill for an effective life coach is to be a good listener.
Their job is to help you approach your unique situation from different perspectives, so in order to do so, they must have a good understanding of the different factors at play.
All coaches worth their salt practice active listening.
Active listening is the art of really listening to what someone is saying, without making judgments in your head, thinking about what you’re going to say next, or interrupting them.
When the client finishes speaking, the coach will repeat back what they just said using their own words, to check they understood correctly and allow the client to clarify or add more detail if necessary.
Research has shown that just the act of speaking our problems aloud helps the brain in the problem-solving process, leading to the so-called “lamp post theory” that even talking to a lamp post would be more helpful than keeping all your problems bottled up.
It just goes to show the power of a great listener, and it’s also why writing out your problems or feelings in a journal can be a great self-coaching tool.
When choosing a coach, make sure you go with someone who gives you all the time you need to speak without interrupting you and practices active listening by repeating back what you have said.
2. Is Curious About You
Running a life coaching practice is like being a detective – every day we follow the clues our clients share with us to solve the mystery of why they feel stuck in their lives and uncover the best course of action.
A great detective is always bestowed with a deep sense of curiosity and, in the case of a life coach, they should be insatiably curious about you!
You should always look for a life coach who demonstrates a deep and genuine curiosity about your life and really probes you to get to the nitty-gritty details.
This curiosity will lead your coach to a deeper understanding of you and your situation and help them assess the different perspectives and possibilities.
An indifferent coach will not probe you enough to get a clear picture of what’s going on for you, while a curious coach will surprise you with the level of detail they ask you to go into.
This approach gives them the depth and breadth of understanding of your situation to facilitate the next quality…
3. Asks the Right Questions
An effective life coach will surprise you with his questions.
They are designed to help you view your situation or problem in ways that have never occurred to you before and from which you can gain valuable new insights and perspectives.
Asking the right questions can make solutions materialize before your very eyes – they were there all along, but you needed to look at them in the right way to see them.
A good life coach uses questions that challenge you to think about your problems in an imaginative way.
This stimulates your brain to think in new and creative ways to approach your challenges, showing you your subconscious patterns and bringing greater clarity to your goals and direction.
If your coach asks you questions starting with things like:
- “What would it look like if…?”
- “How would you feel if…?”
- “What would happen if…?”
- “What could you do to…?”
- “How does this relate to…?”
…then you know they are the kind of coach who is going to ask you the right questions.
4. Is Honest, But Not Judgmental
A good coach leaves her prejudices at the door whenever she walks into a client session and she will never make you feel uncomfortable by judging you.
Instead, she will go out of her way to make sure you feel that you are in a safe space and feel comfortable to open up and share your inner world.
We all have a shadow side comprised of parts of ourselves that we would rather didn’t exist.
In fact, they produce such feelings of guilt, shame, and anxiety, that we try to hide them most of the time.
Your coach should be the person who you can open up to and share those less desirable parts of yourself without fear of judgment.
In return, you can expect your coach to be fiercely honest with you, in a kind and loving way, and to call you out on the false stories you tell yourself and how you hold yourself back.
5. Adapts to Your Needs
Life coaching professionals know that every person is a universe, each with his or her own unique needs and ways of learning, working, communicating, loving, and generally interacting with the world.
They know that in order for their clients to achieve their goals, they must possess a unique, personalized roadmap to show them the way there.
Good coaches take the time to understand their clients’ communication, learning, organizational, and working styles.
This ensures that you will maximize your potential while working with them.
6. Sees Your Full Potential
Often, we hold ourselves back in life due to the limiting beliefs we hold about our skills and capabilities, which prevents us from reaching our full potential.
Your coach should not only see your full potential when you can’t, but he should also believe in your ability to achieve it, especially when you are full of self-doubt.
Having someone who believes in you and cheers you on every step of the way is incredibly important and motivates you to keep moving forward when you might otherwise give up.
Feeling supported by someone who constantly reminds you of your potential when you forget can help you overcome those scary moments when you have to step out of your comfort zone.
7. Is Goal-Oriented & Strategic
When you decide to seek the help of a professional life coach, it’s likely that you’re experiencing a lot of confusion about what you want in life and how to get there.
An effective life coaching professional will be able to cut through the fog to help you identify and define the main key goals that will help you lead a more fulfilling and aligned life.
She will then help you define a series of strategic, actionable steps that will help you achieve your goals over a set period of time, allowing for implementation and integration.
8. Challenges You
Have you ever heard that saying “outside your comfort zone is where the magic happens”?
Well, coaches are masters of getting you outside your comfort zone.
Your coach should push you by taking your goals and stretching them to the point where they feel just a little too big and scary.
This is where the magic happens. They will take your vision for your life and amplify it to beyond what you think possible – because they know you are capable of achieving it.
9. Holds You Accountable
Knowing that you have made a commitment to report back to your coach each week makes you much more likely to actually take action, as opposed to only making a commitment to yourself, which is much easier to break.
A coach is basically a professional accountability buddy!
This means they will check in on you regularly between coaching sessions, and follow up on your progress to make sure you stay on track.
10. Is Passionate About What They Do
This may seem obvious, but you definitely want to hire a coach who is passionate about helping you reach your goals.
A coaching practice can be incredibly lucrative, especially for those who know how to market themselves well, and some coaches are drawn by the lure of the earning potential.
While there’s nothing wrong with being motivated by money, you want to make sure that the coach you hire is in it because they genuinely care and want to see you living your life to the fullest.
How can you tell? You’ll be able to feel it.
If they are passionate, you will see it in their eyes and body language and hear it in their voice.
You will feel relaxed and comfortable in their presence, and that they listen to you with genuine interest.
They will celebrate every one of your wins as if it were there own, no matter how small.
Now I want to hear from you.
Have you ever hired a life coach?
Was your experience positive or negative?
Maybe you are thinking of hiring a coach and this article helped you decide!
Either way, let me know in the comments!