First of all, what is a life coach?
Life coaches are certainly a special type of people. They are caring and highly intuitive people who help others achieve their goals.
Almost all people encounter hardships and difficult decisions at some point or another. It’s just part of the game called life. When it comes to seeking help, going to a traditional therapist often carries a negative stigma and can seem to dramatic, not to mention costly. That’s why many seek out life coaches, which is becoming more and more popular and trendy!
Is life coaching the right path for me?
Here are some essential qualities that make for a good life coach. These include:
- A strong desire to help those in need
- A sense of caring and a deep curiosity about people
- A high level of self-awareness
- Strong personal standards, trustworthiness, and integrity
- Strong emotional intelligence
- A high level of empathy and intuition
- An interest in on-going personal growth
- Excellent verbal and written communication skills
- Active listening skills
- Entrepreneurial and organizational skills
If you possess these qualities then coaching could be an excellent career path. Read on to learn more about the path to life coaching…
Do I need certification to become a life coach?
The simple answer is, no, in most places around the globe you don’t need to be certified to become a self-proclaimed life coach. Life coaching is one of the few professional trades left that you do not need a certificate to practice. However, it may not stay that way and because of the lack of regulations, many people are aren’t very skilled or qualified in the profession are advertising themselves as ‘life coaches’, take on clients, but produce less than satisfying results. Because of some of the horror stories out there many clients are seeking out certified life coaches rather than those without credentials.
Those who are serious about joining the profession should follow the most legitimate, credible path into the career. That means being trained and certified by a well-respected coach training program, preferably one that is accredited by the International Coach Federation (ICF).
Coaching Courses available
Luckily, for those who wish to become a licensed life coach. There are several coaching courses available to choose from.
So, how to choose the best program for you? One of the best places to start is on the ICF website, in order to find accredited training schools. Here you can narrow the field of options by the type of coaching niche that interests you, whether you want in-person or distance learning, the language you want the program delivered in, and whether a program offers financial aid.
Don’t forget to plan financially. The cost of coaching courses ranges widely depending on the school you select. It can range from around $3500 to close to $20,000. More expensive schools are not necessarily better, but be wary of extremely inexpensive programs that promise a certification in a weekend. Generally a certification program should take from several months to a year to complete.