Navigating Life with a Professional Life Coach & How to Become One

In recent years, more people have started to work with a life coach or have trained to become one.

Are you seeking clarity in life or need a new direction for your career?

A life coach can help you achieve those goals, and I want to break down how a life coach contributes to personal growth, what it takes to become one, and the different areas of specialization within the life coaching field.


What is a Life Coach?

A life coach is a catalyst for your transformation. They’ve mastered the principles of success and they’re ready to share that knowledge. They help guide clients in implementing these principles in their careers or personal lives.

For example, when you’re in a job that drains you, a job where you’re just going through the motions, a life coach is the one who lights the path to a career that resonates with your true purpose.

It’s not just about finding any new job, it’s about discovering that sweet spot where your passion meets your skill. And that’s where a life coach comes in.

They don’t just identify the industry where you’ll excel, they stand by your side as you carve out your new path, helping you craft an achievable plan.

It’s a life change. And with a life coach, you’re not just prepared for this journey – you’re destined to succeed in it.

A Life Coach’s Role in Personal Development

Life coaches help you on your journey towards personal and professional success. They’re trained to enhance your personal or professional life, whether that be in relationships, your career, or your daily routines.

You can overcome emotional and mental health challenges, navigate life transitions, and boost overall well-being through their life coaching practice, which ultimately can help treat mental health conditions.

Enhance Self-Awareness

Your journey to self-discovery begins with self-awareness. Life coaches play a crucial role in facilitating this process as it involves leading clients through reflection, thus playing a pivotal role in internal growth. Their strategy often involves posing reflective inquiries to enhance a client’s self-awareness.

Respecting client autonomy, they refrain from imposing their perspectives or solutions. Their role is to aid clients in introspection, clarity achievement, and conscious decision-making.

Goal Setting and Planning

Life coaches can guide you in setting precise objectives and creating practical strategies to attain them. A life coach can assist you in setting professional goals, such as achieving a better work-life balance or determining a career path, guiding you toward your desired destination.

Becoming a Life Coach

To become a life coach, it requires completing training programs, obtaining certification, and gaining experience. There are many different types of certifications, and it all depends on your area of expertise.

Training Programs and Certification

There are many options when it comes to obtaining your life coach certification. Some teach you how to lead entire workshops for others, while others certify you to teach others to speak in public, and others teach you how to coach others to increase their sales.

Becoming a certified life coach provides you with the necessary skills and knowledge needed to guide clients effectively.

Building Experience

To enhance your life coaching expertise, experience is key. Effectively building experience is a vital step toward becoming a competent life coach that others will happily follow.

Life Coaching Specializations

If you’re looking for a life coach, know that there are different fields that they specialize in. You can find a life coach for your career, business, relationships, finances, academics, or health and wellness.

Let’s take a look at the most popular life coaching specializations.

Career & Business Coaching

Career and business coaching are vital specializations in life coaching, aimed to help those seeking to elevate their professional lives. These coaches focus on helping you gain crystal-clear clarity about your career goals and business objectives.

They offer tailored strategies to help you navigate the complex business landscape, whether you’re climbing the corporate ladder or steering your enterprise.

These coaches play a crucial role in enhancing your self-awareness and confidence, ensuring you’re equipped with the mindset and skills needed to tackle professional obstacles. They guide you in identifying and overcoming the challenges that hinder your career progress, empowering you to unlock your full potential in the business world.

Wellness & Personal Coaching

Wellness and personal coaching is another common specialization, that supports you in improving your overall well-being in your personal life. This specialization is about more than just physical health, too. It encompasses mental, emotional, and social wellness.

Life coaches who are experts in this field assist in nurturing healthier relationships with yourself and others, fostering a sense of balance and harmony in your personal life. They guide you in making informed, health-conscious lifestyle choices, promoting habits that contribute to your overall vitality.

These coaches often employ techniques to boost self-esteem, manage stress, and cultivate a positive mindset, ensuring that you’re not just surviving, but thriving in your personal life.


10 Qualities of a Great Life Coach

Effective life coaches possess essential attributes such as maintaining a positive attitude and challenging clients to grow. See what key qualities are necessary to become a life coach or what to look for when searching for one.

1. Maintain a Positive Attitude

Your positive attitude needs to be inspiring to inspire your clients by your belief in them.

2. Be Passionate

Be passionate and empathetic with a desire to help others – this trait allows you to understand your client’s emotions and barriers to success.

3. Have Great Listening Skills

Listening to clients is what life coaching is all about. Understanding subtle tells and messages helps in understanding your client’s issues

4. Be Non-Opinionated

As a coach, your job is not to give client advice, it is to facilitate client’s finding solutions to barriers to success in their career or personal life.

5. No Judgements

The world is filled with people who hold different opinions that you don’t agree with. But, in their view of the world, these opinions might be accurate.

6. Cultivate Curiosity

Curiosity fosters your ability to ask your clients questions that help them understand their feelings and how they impact their success.

7. Be Challenging

The very best coaches challenge their clients so they gain a deeper understanding of their issues. A coach challenges clients in a way that causes them to face the reality surrounding them with clarity, focus, and honesty.

8. Be Observant

Great coaches learn much by observing clients and sorting out the subtlest signs of worry, uncertainty, and trepidation.

9. Communicate With Clarity

To be an excellent coach you must communicate well on many levels such as body language, vocabulary, and more.

10. Stay Honest

Preserve your integrity. Your coaching relationship with clients depends on trust.

Life Coaching vs. Other Helping Professions

In the realm of personal development, life coaches, therapists, and counselors perform different roles, let’s dive into their differences.

Therapy and Mental Health Care

A therapist primarily focuses on healing and treating mental health conditions. They work to uncover and address past traumas and deep-rooted psychological issues, facilitating healing and recovery. Their approach often involves long-term engagement, delving into the complexities of emotional and mental health disorders.

Life coaches, in contrast, are like forward-looking guides. They concentrate on assisting individuals with personal development and goal achievement. Unlike therapists, they focus on the present and future, helping clients to set realistic goals, develop actionable plans, and cultivate a positive mindset to propel forward movement in life.


Counseling and Short-Term Support

Counselors provide immediate, short-term, focused support for specific issues. They are the first responders to mental and emotional distress, addressing immediate concerns such as stress, anxiety, or life transitions.

Counselors provide a supportive space to explore and understand these issues, offering practical tools and strategies to manage them effectively. Their role is often circumscribed to dealing with those who need to navigate through current challenges or crises.

This approach is different from life coaching, which is more about building and navigating towards a long-term vision, and from therapy, which often involves a deeper exploration of past experiences and long-standing patterns.

Benefits and Limitations of Life Coaching

Life coaching offers numerous benefits but also comes with its own set of limitations and boundaries.

Personal and Professional Growth

Life coaching promotes personal and professional development by helping clients set and achieve goals. In the personal realm, it can lead to increased self-awareness, improved personal relationships, and a stronger sense of life purpose and fulfillment. You can learn to identify and overcome personal barriers, enhancing your overall quality of life.

In the professional arena, life coaching helps clarify career aspirations, develop leadership skills, and navigate workplace challenges. It’s particularly beneficial for those facing career transitions or seeking to enhance their professional performance. By setting and achieving targeted goals, you can experience significant advancements in your career.

Recognizing the Boundaries

On the the other hand, life coaches must recognize the boundaries of their own coaching business, understanding that they are not a substitute for mental health treatment provided by a mental health professional or other licensed mental health professionals.

They should be aware of their limitations and know when to refer clients to mental health professionals for issues that are beyond their scope of practice. This ethical and professional understanding ensures that you receive the appropriate care and support for your specific needs, whether that’s navigating life’s challenges or addressing more complex mental health needs.

Finding the Right Life Coach for You

When looking for your own life coach, find one who aligns with your goals and can provide the necessary support and guidance. Finding the right one is crucial for personal growth and success.

And if you want to jump ahead on your personal development and learn how to achieve your goals & optimize your success, with or without a life coach, then download my free Personal Development Plan Template.

This will help you identify areas of potential in your life and map out your goals more efficiently so you can achieve greater success.


About Brian Tracy — Brian is recognized as the top sales training and personal success authority in the world today. He has authored more than 60 books and has produced more than 500 audio and video learning programs on sales, management, business success and personal development, including worldwide bestseller The Psychology of Achievement. Brian's goal is to help you achieve your personal and business goals faster and easier than you ever imagined. You can follow him on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Linkedin and Youtube.

Follow Brian & Join the Discussion