There are countless coaches, but finding the right one is often more difficult than finding your soulmate. Life coaches come in a wide range of approaches and philosophies with varying levels of practicality. Understanding what a life coach does, finding the ideal coach for you, and asking your chosen coach questions will help you identify the right match.
What Is a Life Coach?
A life coach is a professional who helps guide someone toward achieving their goals and aligning their thoughts, emotions, and actions. Life coaches help people make changes they are committed to making in their lives. They help you look at your goals from various angles, ask smart questions, brainstorm new ideas, and stay on track. Here are ways of finding the right life coach.
1. Determine Their Availability
Many people are not available 24/7, and life coaches are no different. If you do not mind coaching sessions that happen at random times, you can interview a coach who is not limited. However, if you prefer scheduled times, talk with them about their availability. See their websites for information about the hours they take calls or if they take calls on weekends, nights, or holidays. This way, you know what to expect if scheduling sessions becomes difficult.
2. Do They Bill by the Hour or Session?
Some coaches bill by the hour and others by sessions. The difference is in the way you pay and the commitment level each approach signifies. If a coach bills by the hour, they indicate they want to work with you as long as you need them. Clients who pay by session indicate that they will only remain with a coach for a certain time, usually determined before coaching begins. Some life coaches offer both options and charge more per session than per hour.
3. Determine Their Level of Expertise
Some life coaches only focus on certain topics, while others work with many life coach niches. Knowing what kind of tools a coach offers will help you determine how committed they are to your growth. Some coaches specialize in coaching children or have experience working with teenagers and business owners. Others specialize in sports performance, love and relationship, and weight loss. Knowing your needs is important so you can hire someone who specializes in the topics most important to you.
4. Ask Them About Their Background
Please find out how a life coach became certified and their professional history. You want to hire someone with experience in the subject they offer. For example, if you are looking for a coach who specializes in health and wellness, you should ask them about their experience. This is important because you look for coaches based on their skills and the credibility of those skills. Based on their answers, you can determine if they have the skills matching your needs.
5. Ask About Their Coaching Styles
Knowing their coaching style will help you understand how they work if you are looking for a life coach. Some coaches use more of an action-plan approach to tasting clients, while others emphasize the importance of being nonjudgmental. Both styles have benefits and drawbacks, but you can ask specific questions to determine if they fit your needs as a client. Since each coach is unique, understanding the different coaching styles will help you narrow down your options.
6. Do Your Research
Research a life coach before you hire them. Online reviews from past clients are a valuable resource that will help you determine a mentor’s strengths and weaknesses. Find out if the coach has had any complaints against them that indicate their coaching did not meet their client’s needs. You can read testimonials from clients to see if they had positive experiences with their coach. This way, you know whether or not to trust the life coach with your needs.
7. Ask For References
Ask references how they were satisfied with the life coach and what they felt they learned from the coach. A happy client is a valuable recommendation; you can ask their references to tell you how satisfied they were with their experience. You will want to ask them how long they stayed with the coach, how they could use the coach’s services, and if the client could get what they needed.
After interviewing your chosen life coach, be sure you are comfortable with the first-time session. This will enable you to share your goals with the coach and help determine their commitment. After that, you can ask questions based on the nature of the coaching sessions and what you want to accomplish. Also, life coaches are there for you when your needs change. They should be able to answer any questions about their services, background, and experience.