how to become a life coach

The Ultimate Guide on How to Become a Life Coach

What if I told you becoming a life coach is not as difficult as you may think? You are more than likely already on the path to becoming a life coach. 

The coaching industry is not regulated, and therefore there aren’t any requirements for becoming a life coach. You become a life coach by understanding how to coach and how to get your clients results. Then you start your own coaching business. 

If you already know how to do that, then congratulations, you are on your way. If not, and you need more clarification, continue with the rest of this post. I will tell you what it will take for you to become a life coach.

What is Coaching

Coaching is an ongoing coach-client relationship where a coach helps individuals with problems or goals in their personal and professional lives. Through coaching, people heighten their learning, better their performance, and strengthen their quality of life and business.

The International Coach Federation (ICF) defines coaching as partnering with clients in a thought-provoking and creative process that inspires them to maximize their personal and professional potential.

What is a Life Coach

A life coach helps individuals get from where they are to where they want to be in their personal or professional life.

What Does a Life Coach Do

A life coach has one-on-one or group coaching sessions with individuals. Life coaches utilize questions, active listening, tools, techniques, and dedication to move their clients forward in the sessions. 

A life coach speeds up the persons’ progress by supplying better focus and awareness of choice. Coaching centers on where people are today and what they’re willing to do to get where they wish to be tomorrow.

If everybody is truthful with themselves, we all need to improve a region or two of our lives. However, why don’t individuals do anything about it?

Most people recognize what to do to become more successful, but they don’t do what they are supposed to do. It’s a life coach’s job to help individuals get what they wish by assisting them in tearing down the roadblocks that individuals impose on themselves.

Is life coaching like therapy, counseling, or psychological science?

Not truly, although life coaching does draw from an array of subject areas, coaching is frequently more concerned about results instead of interpreting or processing. Therefore there’s a firm focus on action.

Second, coaching focuses more on the present and the future instead of the past.

Life coaching is more appropriate for individuals ready to move forward and make a change instead of dwelling on the “why” of everything.  

Life Coaching as a Career

Being a Life Coach is a rewarding career and a great business to start. 

The Lifestyle

Most life coaches start their own business. They work from home and determine their own hours. With the power of the Internet, life coaches work with people locally and globally.

What type of individuals become coaches?

The type of person who becomes a coach is an individual who wishes to contribute to the world, is devoted to personal growth, an individual who treasures freedom and independence in a career.

What does the average day of a life coach consist of?

The average coach’s day is very relaxed and yet exciting. Most coaches work from home (although quite a few use their training and certification to work in large companies). Thus, they have ample time to take care of themselves and put the needs of their families first. 

Coaches design their own day, but it may look something like this:

8:00- 9:00 Meditate and Exercise

10:00- 10:30 Coaching Call

10:30- 11:00 Coaching Call

11:00- 2:00 Lunch and “Free Time”

2:00-2:30 Coaching Call

3:00-3:30 New Client Session

“Coaching Call” refers to the amount of time spent coaching a client. The client calls you from their place of convenience (work or home, whichever works best for them), and the coaching call is conducted.

“New Client Session” refers to a first-time session with a potential new client.

How Much Do Life Coaches Make

On average, life coaches charge $100 an hour.

A life coach makes between $26,000 – $274,000 a year.

There are many factors to consider when looking at how much money a life coach makes.

How much a life coach make depends on:

  • Whether the coach is working full time or part-time
  • How many clients the coach is seeing a month
  • How much the coach is charging per session
  • Whether they are doing more than just 1-on-1 sessions, such as group coaching sessions, selling coaching products, conducting and speaking at seminars and events

Learn more about the salary of a life coach.

How Life Coaches Make Money

A lot of life coaches support themselves by providing life coaching services solely. 75% of life coaches supplement their 1-on-1 coaching revenue utilizing additional means, such as group coaching programs, selling online courses, membership sites, and masterminds. Working another full-time job can take you one to three years to fully support yourself as a life coach. However, it can be done in less than six months! The timeframe depends on the consistency of the person.

What are the Requirements to be a Life Coach

Presently, life coaching doesn’t require any qualifications or education. Life coaches may still make a living without any qualification. But, as competition step-ups and public awareness develop, this may change, and then again, it may not!

Do you need to be licensed to be a life coach? Do you need to be certified to be a life coach?

No, you do not need to be licensed or certified to be a life coach.

The coaching industry is not regulated. Therefore, you do not need a degree, license, or certification.

However, as a life coach trainer, I always tell people, it’s not about the credential; it’s about the training. The training is more important than the certification. If you want to be an expert in anything, you should always continue your education in that field.

So, if you want life coach training and learn advanced skills, you should register for a life coach training program.

6 Steps to Become a Life Coach

1. Make Sure You Have What it Take to Become a Life Coach

As a life coach, there are a few things you must know or learn. 

This includes:

If you are skilled in each area above, then technically, you can start your life coaching business today!  

If not, then do some research and find the best life coach training program for you.

2. Decide the type of life coach you want to be 

The “type of coach” is also known as choosing a coaching niche. You can be a general life coach that helps everyone with everything. Or you can specialize in specific life areas. You can also specialize in helping a particular group of people. Or you can specialize in helping a specific group of people in a specific life area. 

Resource: Types of Coaches, Coaching Certifications, and Finding Your Coaching Niches

3. Set Up The Legal Side of Your Coaching Business

This is the most overlooked step. This information varies based on where you live. Please consult with a local accountant, attorney, or other professional to help you determine how to set up the legal side of your business.

Here are the most common things you will need to do:

  • Decide and register your business structure. Are you going to be a sole proprietor, LLC, Corp, or Non-Profit?
  • Check zoning regulations, register your business and business name
  • If in the United States, get an Employer Identification Number (EIN)
  • Open a business bank account

4. Create Coaching Services, Packages, and Pricing

Decide your coaching services. 

  • Are you going to provide 1-on-1 coaching services or group coaching services? 
  • Are you going to coach in person, over the phone, or online?

Create coaching packages and pricing

  • Are you going to charge by the hour or charge a flat fee?
  • Are you going to coach on retainer or have a start and end date?

Read: How to Price Your Coaching Services to learn more about pricing.

5. Set Up the Backend of Your Business

Sign up for a system to collect payments. The best and easiest is to sign up with PayPal to collect credit card payments from your clients. You can also use CashApp for Business or Square. 

Set up your office and get all the things needed to run your business. This includes a computer, telephone, Internet access, video conferencing software such as zoom if you plan to coach online, etc. 

Create your client welcome packet. The client welcome packet includes forms needed to protect yourself and help your clients. Some things that can go into a client welcome packet includes:

  • Coaching agreements
  • Background questionnaire
  • Confidentiality agreements
  • Self-Assessment sheet

Gather and organize client tools. When coaching, you will find that sometimes it’s good to have coaching tools, forms, and resources handy to help move your clients forward. 

Create your coach marketing plan – 

6. Start Marketing Your Coaching Business

When you have all of the above in order, it is time to get yourself out into the world to get clients! Create your marketing plan and gather all of your promotional materials. 

Are you going to market offline or online?

Are you going to market locally or expand your reach?

The #1 way to market is online marketing. Start with building an online presence. 

4 Components to Be a Successful Life Coach

4 components to be a successful life coach

1. Invest in Your Own Personal Development

To evolve your practice, evolve yourself. As you grow as an individual, become more self-aware. When you become more self-aware, you’ll attract people who want to learn from you. You will empower people through your own personal development.

2. Continue Your Education

As I said earlier, if you want to be an expert in anything, you should always continue your education. Over time and with coach training, you’ll learn coaching methods and techniques that help move a person forward and create transformation.

3. Practice and Experience

Coaching is not just a business skill; it’s a life-long skill that can be used in many areas of our lives. Practice coaching every day with your children, family, and friends. The more you use coaching skills, the better you will become at helping your clients. 

4. Knowledge and Consistency in Business and Marketing

Maybe the most crucial here is marketing – even if you’re an over-the-top coach, you’ll need a few marketing skills. E.g. discovering your niche, positioning yourself, marketing avenues, selling.


How to Become a Certified Life Coach

To become a certified life coach, you need to choose a life coach training school that suits your needs. Because the coaching industry isn’t regulated, each school has its own requirements on how to become certified.

To make things easier for you, I created a post that gives you a step-by-step process on how to become a certified life coach.

How Much Does it Cost to Become a Life Coach?

If you decide to get life coach training you will find that prices vary from $50 – $20K+. Crazy right? Yes, that’s because it’s not regulated. This is why you must read my post about becoming certified.

How to Become a Life Coach Without Certification

The best way to become a life coach without certification is to ensure you have the necessary coaching skills to help people truly.

Basic coaching skills include:

  • motivating and empowering people
  • powerful questioning
  • active listening
  • creating awareness
  • goal attainment and action planning
  • accountability
  • how the mind works

Read Top 5 Coaching Skills Every Coach Must Have

Coaching Skills Inventory Rating Scale

Use the inventory rating scale below to determine if you should start your coaching career today without training.

Rate yourself on a scale of 1-5.

1 = I have no clue

2 = I do, but I’m not sure if my method is effective

3 = Yes, I got this!

Please note, if you answer 1 or 2 to any of the statements, you should consider getting life coach training and certification.

Coaching SkillsRate on a scale of 1-3
I know how to format and conduct a coaching session.checkbox
I know how to help someone with their problems by bringing out the answers they have within themselves.checkbox
I know the steps to take to help someone achieve their life goals.checkbox
I understand how the mind works and how to help someone conquer their mind to make achievements.checkbox
I know how to motivate people.checkbox
I know how to empower people.checkbox
Total score:checkbox

How to Be a Great Life Coach

To be a life coach, you will need to acquire positive characteristics and traits that include:

  1. A genuine concern for people.
  2. A warm and inviting personality.
  3. High personal standards.
  4. A vision and knowing what you want to achieve in life.
  5. Being a positive thinker
  6. A strong sense of self-awareness.
  7. An excellent understanding of emotional intelligence and, at the very least, working on your own emotional maturity.
  8. Effective communication skills
  9. Being intuitive, perceptive, and inquisitive.
  10. An understanding and demonstration of how to develop and maintain positive relationships.
  11. Being motivating and empowering to others.

Read Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities of a Life Coach

Life Coach Characteristics and Traits Checklist

I have:Check
a genuine concern for people.checkbox
a warm and inviting personality.checkbox
high personal standards.checkbox
a vision and knowing what you want to achieve in life.checkbox
a strong sense of self-awareness.checkbox

a great understanding of emotional intelligence (and at the very least you are working on your own emotional maturity).
effective communication skills.checkbox
an understanding and demonstration of how to develop and maintain positive relationships.checkbox
I am:
a positive thinker.checkbox
intuitive, perceptive, and inquisitive.checkbox
motivating and empowering to others.checkbox

Types of Life Coach Jobs

The great thing about becoming a life coach is that you don’t have to work for anyone.

You can start your own coaching business.

This is your opportunity to work independently, or you can partner and work alongside other coaches.

You can:

  • Conduct 1-on-1 coaching sessions
  • Hold group coaching sessions
  • Create coaching programs
  • Create coaching products
  • Conduct and speak at seminars and events

You don’t have to quit your job right away to start your business. Build your business and when your coaching business is generating enough income for you to leave, then quit.

Find a life coach job

As a life coach, you can also work for other companies.

Once you have been trained, you would have acquired the skills necessary to land an entry-level position in the human services industry.

Type of life coach jobs include:

  • life coach
  • life skills coach
  • career coach
  • job coach for individuals with disabilities
  • youth coach

If you have a degree in human services, then your chances of landing a job are even better.

Life Coach Career Decision Maker:

Now that you understand life coaching as a business and how to become a life coach, I would like for you to take some time and think about if becoming a life coach is for you.

  • Are you the person that your friends and family always come to for advice?
  • Do you love helping people?
  • Do you love helping people with their personal issues and helping them to sought things out?
  • Do you often empower and motivate people or want to learn how?
  • Do you want to start your own business? Making money from home?
  • Are you self-motivated?
  • Are you an aspiring entrepreneur?

Use the decision-maker below to determine if being a life coach is what you had in mind.

Please note, if you mark “yes” to any statement in the second column, then chances are life coaching is not the ideal career for you.

I want to:CheckI want to:Check
Help people by helping them discover the answers to their problems, which they have inside of them.checkboxBe the expert and tell people what I think they should do to fix their problems.checkbox
Collaborate with my client to help them make better decisions in life.checkboxAnalyze the client’s circumstance and tell them the best thing to do, without any regard to what they think they should do.checkbox
Assist clients in setting goals and creating action plans.checkboxLead clients, with no aim or direction.checkbox
Motivate and inspire clients to maximize their potential.checkboxDiscourage clients from being the best they can be.checkbox

Things To Think About When Choosing To Become A Life Coach

Life Coaching is Not About Giving Advice

When many people think about becoming a life coach, they feel that they would be great at it because they are great at giving advice. However, life coaching is not about giving advice, and it’s not about being the expert. In life coaching, the client is the expert in their own lives. Your clients have all the answers, and you are there to help them find the answers within. 

Life Coaching is a Skill

Contrary to what some may believe, life coaching is a highly skilled practice. Many people think there’s no training needed to become a life coach, and when they can’t help their clients, they realize that coach training is very much needed. 

Typically, when someone hires a life coach, it’s because they have struggled with a problem or they have struggled with reaching a particular goal. And they don’t know where to turn. Hence, you must make sure that you know the skills that are needed in helping people with all the many situations they may need help getting fixed.

When many people think about becoming a life coach, they don’t think about the tough questions they will have to ask their clients. Tough questions are ultimately the questions that you need to know to help others with the life problems that they are having. This is why getting specific training can also help in the results of your practices.

You Don’t Have a Perfect Life to be a Life Coach

It is important for anyone that wants to become a life coach to understand that they do not have to have a perfect life. No one’s life is perfect.  

However, you should need to be willing to use your life coaching skills in your own life or hire a life coach for yourself. It is very common for life coaches to have their own coach. Having a coach will help you to learn from the client side what works effectively and what does not. It’s difficult to truly mean it when you tell individuals coaching is good and they should try it unless you have your own. Having your own personal success stories from being coached is a good motivator to share the construct of coaching and invite individuals to be coached.



After reading this guide of how to become a life coach, do you want to be a life coach?

Do you think life coaching is for you?

Do you have the skills necessary to become a life coach, or do you need training?

Do you have the characteristics and traits necessary to be a life coach?

Let’s discuss…

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