When you scroll through your social media feed, you’ll probably start to realise that your grid is flooded with posts from coaches.
Nowadays there’s pretty much a coach out there for everything. Whether you’re looking for a health coach, empowerment coach, business coach or life coach, chances are there’s a coach specialising in that particular field. But, in a market that’s flooded with coaches, how do you know where to start when it comes to finding the right coach for you and your needs? Faced with so many options, it can start to feel a little overwhelming.
If you’ve been thinking about working with a coach but aren’t quite sure where to begin, I’ve put together some tips and suggestions to help get you started on your search for the right coach and working out whether life coaching is what you need.
What can a life coach do for me?
Before you can decide if a life coach is really what you need, you first need a clear understanding of what a life coach actually does and the kind of issues that they can help to support you with.
Simply put, a life coach tends to work more holistically with you on, as you might expect, your life generally and elements of your life that might feel out of sync or that you wish to create change in. A life coach is someone that asks questions and gives you the time and space to reflect on the answers. As a life coach, I will challenge you to think differently and address the ‘what-ifs’. I don’t give advice and tell you what to do (as whatever I might do in a given situation wouldn’t necessarily be the right choice for you).
Life coaching is not counselling, it is not mentoring and it is not consulting. It’s all about supporting you to believe that you ‘can’ and creating actions to set you on the path towards achieving your goals. If you want to find out a bit more about what a life coach does, take a look at my previous blog post ‘What Exactly Is Life Coaching?’
If you’ve decided that a life coach is definitely the right type of coach to help you move forwards with your goals, what else do you need to consider to ensure that you find the right coach for you?
What training have they had?
Reality check. Did you know that the life coaching industry is actually an unregulated industry? That means that yes, in theory, and somewhat cynically, pretty much anyone can decide to call themselves a coach without any kind of formal training or accreditation.
Now, before you panic. I believe that all ‘coaches’ have an intent to help others, but it is worth knowing and considering that with no requirement for an accreditation you need to think about how you ensure you get what you need.
In your search for a coach, and this is so often where lines can blur between coaching and teaching, it’s worth checking if potential coaches have completed any specific kinds of training or certification. Personally speaking, I completed my training with The Coaching Academy and qualified as an accredited Personal Performance Life Coach in 2019. In order to complete my training, I studied for two years and completed a range of modules and face to face sessions, as well as undertaking assessed coaching sessions and completing regular assignments. It was a lot of work but I wanted to ensure that, when I set up my coaching business, I had the knowledge and tools to succeed and provide my clients with the best experience possible. I’m not saying this to put you off working with anyone who hasn’t completed formal coaching training, there are some great coaches out there who haven’t taken this route, but it’s definitely something worth keeping in mind when you’re searching for a coach.
What style of coaching do they offer?
Those of you that know me will know that I’m very much a ‘straight talking’ coach.
I say it how it is and cut right through the BS! I will not allow you to hide in your comfort zone. I’m all about not taking the easy path and asking you questions that are going to challenge you and push you towards achieving your goals. If that’s not what you’re looking for, then I’m probably not the right coach for you. And do you know what? That’s okay. I’m not going to be the right coach for everyone.
To get the most out of your coaching experience, it’s important that you work alongside a coach that is the right fit for you.
Do they offer a free discovery call?
I would expect most coaches to offer some kind of free call or session in which you have the chance to talk to them in person about what you’re hoping to get out of coaching and find out more about their processes and how they work.
Personally, I offer a free 30 minute discovery call to potential clients to see if we are a good ‘fit’. Anything shorter than this just doesn’t seem enough time to get a clear picture of whether a particular coach is going to be the right match for you. During the call, I would expect the coach to be able to give you an outline of how they think they may be able to help you.
When it comes to the discovery call, trust your gut. I think you can tell fairly confidently by the end of the call if you have a good rapport with the coach and if they seem like the kind of person that you’d like to work with.
Do you have the same kinds of shared beliefs and values? Are you on the same page when it comes to what you’re hoping to achieve from the sessions? Don’t be afraid to ask questions and don’t be pressurised by a coach that wants you to make a decision quickly. That would certainly raise alarm bells in my mind
How much does coaching cost?
Prices for coaching really can range from the sublime to the extreme! Do your research and look into the kinds of prices and packages that different coaches offer.
When it comes to coaching the most expensive coaches aren’t necessarily the best, but if someone is significantly cheaper than the competition there might be a reason why. If you’re trying to stick to a specific budget, it’s always worth asking if the coach offers any kind of discount for block booking sessions or other ways of working with them?
My advice would always be to talk to a few coaches to get a feel for what you believe is the right level of investment and what you think you will achieve in return for this.
What kinds of questions should I ask?
When you’re talking to a potential coach always be clear about why you want to work with them and what you want to achieve from your sessions together.
It’s always worth checking out their online presence too. What’s their website like? Is it engaging and professional? Does it resonate with you? Take a look at their social media channels too and give them a follow to see if their content appeals to you.
If you’re looking for specific questions to ask during your discovery call, I’ve got a few suggestions to help get you started:
- What’s their story, their background, how did they become a coach?
- Have they worked with a coach themselves?
- What’s involved in working with them?
- Do they have any client testimonials they can point you towards?
- Can they give you some examples of the type of issues they’ve helped clients with in the past?
Once you’ve found a life coach that you think is a good fit, the most important thing to remember is that coaching only works if you’re ready to take action and put the work in. You have to be open to change. If you embark upon your coaching journey with the right mindset and attitude, it is a powerful tool to help you make the right changes in your life and achieve your goals.
If you’re still feeling unsure and want a bit more guidance as to whether life coaching could be the right fit for you, have a read of my previous blog post ‘6 Signs A Life Coach Could Be What You Need.’
If you’re interested in working with a life coach and think I could be the right fit for you or would like to know more, let’s talk. Why not get in touch today and book in for a discovery session with me?
I’d love to hear from you and help support you on your journey to achieving your goals in your life