How To Become A Life Coach: The Ultimate Guide

Want to become a life coach? You’re right where you need to be. This article guides you on how to become a life coach.

Becoming a life coach is more than just giving motivational speeches to people who are interested in listening to you.

As a life coach, you guide others that are trying to fulfill their life’s purpose. However, as interesting as this may sound, it is also quite challenging because not everyone can become a life coach.

If you have the desire to help people achieve their goals and purpose, becoming a life coach is a good career path to consider.

Also, the good thing about becoming a life coach is that there is a large market for it as well. Everyone needs guidance and this is where you can easily come in.

Let us examine the steps required to become a life coach, the qualities, and who a life coach is. 

Who Is A Life Coach

A life coach is a professional who helps people make progress in their lives and achieve a life purpose or a life goal.  Life coaches help their clients improve every part of their day-to-day lives. This includes relationships, careers, marriage, spirituality, sports, business, and so on.

Furthermore, life coaches assist in clarifying people’s goals, identifying their challenges, and coming up with a possible solution to overcome these challenges.

As a life coach, you harness your skills and talents in creating solutions for the obstacles people face. In other words, you help people leverage their strengths and work on their weaknesses so that they can get a better life outcome.

In addition, you operate like therapists but cover a wider perspective. Unlike therapists, you are not restricted to psychological challenges. Moreover, unlike therapists, you are not allowed to diagnose an individual unless you are licensed to.

As a professional, you organize sessions for your clients which could last for a set period.

Characteristics And Skills Of A Life Coach

For you to become a successful life coach, you need the following skills:

1. People-oriented

Because you are dealing with people as a life coach, you must be a social and outgoing person.

Being a life coach will expose you to different individuals with different backgrounds and exposure which would affect their character. This simply means that you may not handle people with the same strategy.

For you to know how to influence the people you coach, you should get to know their character and how they react to certain issues. This will guide you on how to bring out the best in them.

2. Empathy

A life coach must be able to exhibit empathy for his or her clients. In other words, life coaches are compassionate and are ready to share in the pain and success of their clients. As a life coach, you ensure that your clients are not left alone to struggle by always standing by them.

Compassion and empathy go hand in hand in the character of a life coach. When you show empathy, this allows the clients to open up about their challenges and failures if available.

They feel they can trust you to see them through, after all, you are the life coach. And while you are trying to be compassionate, do not get too attached and personal with your clients.

3. Good listening skills

Coaching is not all about you doing the talking. You must be ready to listen as well.

Being able to sit down and listen to your clients is very important because it will help you understand your client’s needs better as well as give you an idea of how to meet those needs and in the long run, achieve the goals you set for your clients.

For communication to be effective, listening must go beyond what comes out of the mouth of the speaker. You must be able to ask the right questions and maintain good eye contact. As you listen, do not feel the need to interrupt the speaker or become judgemental. Be focused on what your clients say.

4. Readiness to learn

A life coach is someone that deals with people every day and for you to be successful at that, you must be open to learning more. Whatever field you find yourself in the life coaching business, learning and mastering that field is necessary. This will allow you to become better at what you do, thereby, increasing your success rate among your clients.

The best ways to learn include;

  • Attending conferences.
  • Reading relevant books to improve your skills.
  • Taking up surveys and research on how to be better coaches.
  • Taking up more professional courses.
  • Attending training and training others.

Once you make yourself teachable and curious to improve your skills as a life coach, you become better at it and your clients will appreciate you for that. This will always make you stand out from other people.

5. Ability to motivate

If you cannot make people feel better about themselves, then you have no business being a life coach. A coach is to ensure that his or her clients are motivated and that they can overcome any life obstacle thrown at them. No one wins a battle when they feel discouraged.

Motivation helps people reach their goals and as a life coach that wants to see your clients succeed, you must be able to push your clients to achieve those set goals through encouragement and motivation.

When you do that for your clients, a good number of them will be willing to refer you because of how you helped them.

6. Passion to help others

A life coach is someone willing to help others. Many people that require the services of a life coach require help in one way or another. As a life coach, it is your sole responsibility to meet those needs.

This can only be easy if you are passionate as a life coach. Without passion, it may be difficult to be successful because the business thrives on your desire to be useful to others.

There is a need for you to desire to help other people and this should drive your passion for becoming a life coach. In addition to this, you must be very sincere and honest with them. 

7. Accountability

You must be accountable as a life coach. Whatever your clients share with you must remain confidential except stated otherwise.

This will allow people to put their trust in you because they believe in your high level of integrity and it will be easy to get them to open up. Being trustworthy is important in the life coaching business. Therefore, you should build trust in your clients.

Steps Involved In Becoming A Life Coach

1. Discover your niche

The first thing that is required of you as a potential life coach is to find your best point of service. You can choose a niche to start with and build up your reputation from there.

This does not mean you will be restricted to just one aspect of coaching, however, you should be able to master one particular area of specialization. The areas of specialization include:

  • Business and leadership coaching
  • Dating and relationship coaching
  • Diet and fitness coaching
  • Family life coaching
  • Addiction and sobriety coaching
  • Financial coaching
  • Career coaching
  • Health and wellness coaching
  • Life skills coaching
  • Mental health coaching
  • Spirituality coaching
  • Sports coaching

Once you choose one of the options available, you would be able to develop your coaching skills and expose yourself to the right clients. Marketing yourself and your skills to general clients usually brings poor conversion rates.

2. Get certified

After you have chosen where to focus, you need to work towards getting the right knowledge and skillsets that come with that area of specialization.

There will be a need for you to be certified. Having a professional certificate stands you out from others and it also makes you look credible to your potential clients.

Furthermore, being certified makes you bound to certain guidelines and ethics. This is because there is a big responsibility that comes with helping people, so specialized training is required.

It is from that training that you will get to learn psychological principles and skills as well as how to determine the needs of clients through communication.

It is important to note that getting a credential as a certified coach is a rigorous process and it can only be successful if you are truly passionate about it.

3. Set up your business

Now that you have been certified and well recognized as a life coach in the field of your choice, it is time to set up yourself as a business owner.

First, setting up your business will require you to identify your start-up cost. This will involve the cost of registering the business with the regulatory body.

Secondly, you need a physical location for your meeting sessions with prospective clients who would be interested in your services.

Thirdly, you would need to create a business and marketing strategy. The business strategy will include your long-term business goals which include the mission and vision statements that will guide you.

Your marketing strategy should capture who your ideal clients are and how you intend to reach out to them. This can be done by embarking on thorough marketing research.

In addition, you should look into the idea of using social media and content marketing to reach out to people.

Setting up a website for your business will also create better brand awareness for your life coaching business. Lastly, the use of videos and podcasts is a good way to publicize your business.

4. Keep learning

Learning is a continuous process and it never ends even after you get certified. There is a need for you to improve your skills which will make you a better life coach.

Keep attending training, seminars, and workshops, and give time to train people too. Interact with fellow professionals like yourself and share ideas. Ask other professionals what they do to get better and work on your weaknesses.

5. Set your price

It is difficult to value the help you render to people as a life coach but it is expedient to note that your business is valuable too. Therefore, set your charges based on the time you spend with your clients. It could be per hour which is the most popular pricing method.


What qualifications do you need to become a life coach?

There is no specific degree or certification needed for you to become a life coach, however, coaching certification from a credible training program and a background in psychology, business, and wellness can make you highly marketable as a coach.

How much do life coaches earn?

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) classifies life coaches under educational, guidance, and career counselors and advisors, who make an average salary of $57,040 a year, with a  range of $34,380 to $96,090.

How long does it take to become a life coach?

An accredited training course can take up to 12 months but most times, the length of the course depends on the students because it is self-paced.

Is becoming a life coach a good career?

Yes. Life coaching is a good career. There is a high level of work satisfaction and due to the passion attached to it, you will love your job. Also, you don’t have to work under a boss. You can work flexible hours with many different clients from all walks of life.


Becoming a life coach comes with a passion and enthusiasm to help people get to their peak in life. It is more strict in terms of ethics and way different from therapy which deals with mental issues.

In addition, life coaches act as guides throughout their clients’ life journeys. Therefore, it is important for you as a life coach to acquire the skills required to push people to their greatest potential.

Once you understand your duty as a life coach, the chances of becoming a successful professional are very high.

Perhaps, you are interested in delving into other career paths in psychology, see the post on what you can do with a psychology degree.

I hope this article helped. Thank you for reading.