life coaching – beyond, present, and future

If you have been searching the internet for something, you will usually end up with a life coach site popping up in your results at some point. Life Coaching has evolved over the years and continues to change and grow – but what is life coaching, how do you choose a life coach, and what should you be aware of?

Life Coaching Past:

Life Coaching emerged noticeably about ten years ago. Most life coaching was advertised as Executive Coaching or Leadership Coaching, and corporations usually hired them for staff or individual training. With the onset of in-house corporate training teams, the need for Executive Coaches diminished, and many sought other areas to continue coaching in. Since then, life has changed in every area of life you can think of, and life coaches specialize in one or two main living areas, but many still coach in multiple life areas. Originally, life coaches were people who had some previous work experience before going into coaching. Most Executive Coaches come from the corporate business world and could make high incomes as Executive Coaches or Leadership Coaches. Many of these past Executive Coaches have also become Client Attraction or Marketing Coaches in today’s climate. Their services are still provided to corporations, mostly small or solo businesses or individuals.

Life Coaching Now:

Life coaching is common and easy to find for businesses and individuals, and it can be called just about anything. Today, there are many life coach training schools, but there are huge disparities between education students’ qualities from school to school. There are no required educational standards that a life coach school must follow/provide, and there is no regulation of the life coach industry. Anyone can call themselves a Life Coach and open a practice-buyer. Beware becomes a severe phrase to remember. A couple of professional organizations, such as the International Coaching Federation, a professional membership organization, are working diligently to establish coaching and life coach school standards and looking at types of regulations that could benefit the industry and consumers.

Between 10,000 and 20,000 life coaches are now providing services to customers. An increasing number of people are pursuing the goal of becoming a life coach. Many people want to help others, but many think they can earn a tremendous amount of money while working part-time at home in their PJs. If only it were that easy. Today’s world of having a web-based business and all it entails has become very complicated, and start-up costs aren’t as cheap either. Most life coaches earn less than $20,000 a year because they don’t have enough clients.

Many coaches fail because you have to be a person who can structure your own time while working from home. When you work in a business, it provides the structure you work within. There is no structure except what a person creates at home; it is all too easy not to be structured. Marketing has become a huge part of daily life for life coaches, much more than ever before, and many have taken marketing to an incredible level of hard selling. Those ‘coaches’ providing marketing or small business start-up coaching have created a huge income-based industry, but it has also gained tremendous competition over the last few years.

life coaching

Niche Is In:

Niche in life coaching is the current theme – a life coach ‘specializes’ in only one or a few areas. Many life coaches would still be considered general life coaches and offer a broader range of coaching services. The market pushes life coaches to have specific niches quite hard and explains that the public prefers ‘specialists’ and is willing to pay more. It is like the medical profession; you have generalists with a smaller focus, specialists with a broad focus, and specialists with particular focus topics. So, everyone entering coaching is told to have a niche; it could be life coaching, client attraction, marketing, public relations, Christian, organization, health, financial, and many more areas that ‘coaching’ is being offered.

Buyer Beware:

I was amazed at how few life coaches will post their prices throughout my research; perhaps even more importantly, they do not post their educational or work experience! I don’t know about you, but I’m not interested in sharing my dreams and goals with someone unless they are qualified. That means having work, life, and educational experience in their ‘niche’ or coaching areas. I’ve asked many other coaches, some of whom are very well-known and successful. I have been told that education and experience are unimportant! So, I guess from that, if someone worked at the local animal shelter and didn’t graduate from high school, they are just as well qualified to provide life coaching services to everyone else. Not in my book. We check out loads of information before buying a car, choosing a doctor, and even purchasing a mattress. Why wouldn’t it mean something about a life coach’s education and work/life experience? So, buyer beware!

Why people should try Life Coaching:

Life Coaching is an awesome way for people to stay motivated, keep their focus, gain self-insights, and strive to achieve their goals. Life Coaching deals with the here and now and goes forward from there; it is an action-based, co-active coaching style that is not like therapy, which deals with past life events and more psychological issues. A life coach should have the educational/work/life experiences and tools necessary to meet the needs of their customers, and if not, then say so and refer the customer to a life coach who does.

I recently tried to start a referral network at the life coach school I attended so that others and I would know where to refer a customer if I felt another could better meet their needs. Only two other coaches felt secure enough to put their strengths out there – no one else! Today’s busy, fast-paced world is often filled with stress, little personal support, and difficulty achieving your goals or solving problems. Life Coaching is a great means to help people achieve their goals, solve problems, and get the support they need so that life is less difficult and, overall, improved.

What to look for in a Coach:

As a customer in choosing a life coach, tips for you include knowing ahead of time what you want to achieve with a life coach and answering how a coach can best work with you and you with them. It is also helpful to have an idea of how long you are willing to be in coaching before you expect to achieve your results and how much you can afford; research different life coach websites and their articles, newsletters and check out their education/work/life experience and training; interview three other coaches – include in the discussion all your questions on expertise, prices, examples of accomplishments related to your goal, how long do they think it would take to achieve your goal, explain how you prefer to work with a coach and ask what their style of coaching is; ask for two references that had destinations similar to yours; and most importantly, make sure the life coach you choose is one that you ‘connect’ with or that ‘feels right to you. Other possible questions can be asking what the life coach feels are their strengths and weaknesses. Also, be cautious if you get the impression that the life coach may end up ‘telling you what to do’ or pressuring you into goals or avenues you do not want, and they seem more on the coach’s agenda than yours.

Life coaching is supposed to be about the customer, what they want to achieve, and their learning/growing/achieving style through reaching their goals. It is not about the life coach. Every life coach’s goal should be to put themselves out of business. If coaching were done well, fewer people would eventually need it. As the saying goes, ‘Teach them to fish rather than feeding them fish, and they will never go hungry. Costs for life coaching services can typically run $300-$600 a month, and some will go to $300 or more an hour. Some coaches earn $18,000 an hour. Ask if the life coaches you check out don’t publish their costs.

What is the future of Life Coaching?

Where is Life Coaching going in the future? While the economy and the increasing stress of everyday life are severely hurting the quality of people’s lives, life coaching will continue to grow in the number of people it serves and the number of life coaches entering the field. The number of people utilizing the web and becoming web-based businesses will continue to increase the number of coaches who provide marketing, client attraction, and start-up business types of services.

One of the newer life coaching waves is ‘Wellness Coaching,’ which is similar to health coaching. I am concerned that many who enter this ‘niche’ receive only 20 hrs of training. Many life coaches practicing health or wellness coaching have not checked their state’s laws on what they can and cannot coach on in this ‘niche.’ A life coach cannot treat, diagnose, cure, prescribe, or provide counseling. As a Holistic Practitioner, Certified Life Coach, and Licensed Social Worker, I fear people receiving life coaching services on health-related subjects from life coaches with so little background in health. Thus, the potential for harm to the customer may occur. This is my concern and opinion, which some share but others do not. The pressure for more specific specialization, ‘niching,’ will also likely increase.

How to Live Within Your Means

“Always live inside your approach: If you’re making it an addiction to live within your means each day, you’re much less likely to go into client debt when gas or meal charges increase and more likely to regulate your spending in other areas to compensate. Debt begets extra debt while you can’t pay it off right away – if you think fuel charges are high, wait until you’re paying 29.99% annual percentage price (APR) on them. To take this precept to the next degree, when you have a partner and a two-profit family, see how close you may get to residing off the simplest one partner’s profits. Inappropriate times, this tactic will help you save amazing amounts of money – how quickly ought you take it to help you repay your mortgage, or how much in advance could you retire if you had an additional $40,000 a year to keep? In awful instances, if one partner gets laid off, you may be OK because you’ll already be used to living on one income. Your savings behavior will be forestalled briefly. However, your daily spending can remain ordinary.”

A manner of dwelling of individuals, households (households), and societies, which they manifest in handling their bodily, mental, social, and financial environments on a day-to-day foundation. Lifestyle is expressed in each work and enjoyment behavior pattern and (on a person’s foundation) in activities, attitudes, pursuits, reviews, values, and allocation of profits. It also reflects human beings’ self-photograph or self-idea, how they see themselves and accept as true how they are seen with the aid of others. Lifestyle is a composite of motivations, needs, and wishes and is prompted by lifestyle, family, reference groups, and social class.

Sandy Ryan
Writer. Music advocate. Devoted bacon trailblazer. Hardcore web fanatic. Travel junkie. Avid creator. Thinker. Skateboarder, coffee addict, record lover, reclaimed wood collector and RGD member. Producing at the junction of minimalism and mathematics to craft delightful brand experiences. I'm a designer and this is my work.