What does a life coach ACTUALLY do?
I get asked this question at least two times a day - or at least some variation of it. The most popular one is “Isn’t that just a therapist?”
Since the coaching industry is fairly new in Europe, it’s still gaining momentum as people learn more about what life coaching is and how it can have an impact on their lives.
I truly believe that every 30-something should try life coaching at least once. Your thirties are a hugely important decade: often one with lots of change, clarity-seeking, and cementing BIG goals and aspirations.
That’s why I’m sharing 10 ways that life coaching can help you create the life you truly desire. But first, let’s talk about coaching and the different types that exist.
What is coaching?
If you ask ten different people this question, don’t be surprised when you get ten different answers.
My favorite way to explain coaching is with this analogy 👇🏼
If you think about a gym as a place to exercise your physical body, then coaching exercises your emotional and mental body. Think of it as a gym for your mind!
Coaching is perfect for when you want a deeper understanding of what’s going on inside your head so you can learn to process your thoughts and achieve your goals.
So many of us can easily understand the importance of exercise for our bodies. I want to challenge and encourage you to understand how important it is to exercise your mind, too.
Now, let’s also talk about the different types of coaching. Here are a few of the most popular ones that can help you in a variety of areas of your life.
Business coaches can help you start a new business, learn how to get more clients or increase sales, and scale your business to make more money.
I actually started out as a career coach! A career coach gives you practical and tangible action steps to help you find a job, create your CV, develop networking skills, and practice interview questions.
Nutrition and health coaches give you practical steps to change your diet or achieve a health goal like losing weight, increasing your energy or balancing hormones.
Most mindset and life coaches fall under holistic coaching and focus on a specific niche or area. I identify as a holistic coach. I work with women in their late 20s or early 30s who are struggling with their careers, relationships, or lifestyle (or a mix of all three!). Although I share a lot of practical tips, I also recognize the powerful role mindset plays in changing your life for the better.
Who is qualified to be a life coach?
You don’t need any specific qualifications or certificates to call yourself a coach.
Since the barrier to entry is low, anyone can wake up one day and decide they are a life coach.
However, the barrier to success is high.
By that, I mean that while anyone can call themselves a coach, not everyone will be able to help you create the success and results you desire. In short, not all coaches are created equal.
In order to make the most of your coaching experience, be sure to choose someone who is qualified. Make sure they’ve done training or certifications, have lots of experience, or can show you some of their glowing testimonials.
What’s the difference between having a therapist and a life coach?
A therapist will often want to revisit your past, understand your childhood, and discuss familial relationships so that you can gain clarity and move forward.
The aim of coaching is to focus on the present and future. It’s all about taking tangible action and forging ahead to make progress.
How can life coaching help you?
1. Offer an objective opinion
Life coaches hold space for you to share your thoughts and feelings without judgement. They offer an objective point of view into your current situation, as their only intention is to make sure that you work towards your goals and desires.
Unlike family members and friends who have insight into your past and heavily rely on subjective points of view, a coach creates a non-judgmental space that acts as a mirror.
We all have thousands of thoughts in our minds at any given moment. Most times, we never truly share what we are thinking or feeling.
A coach creates an opportunity for you to share those thoughts (even if it’s just once per week) without feeling judged.
2. Answer powerful questions
Your coach is trained to actively listen to you and ask questions that will help you understand what’s really going on in your head. They can help you spot patterns in your thoughts and bring attention to them so you can dive deeper.
3. Challenge your limiting beliefs
We all have limiting beliefs or stories that we repeat to ourselves that are NOT based in reality. However, because we’ve played these stories on repeat our whole lives, it can be hard to recognize these made-up stories for what they truly are.
It’s a coach’s job to help you understand where these stories came from, challenge these limiting beliefs, and overcome them so that you can finally move forward and create the results you desire.
So much of the time, our brains are simply running on autopilot. We think and respond to life based on the social conditions that we’ve learned throughout childhood, rather than conscious, intentional choices.
Two questions that I ask my clients to help them overcome limiting beliefs are:
Is this *actually* thought true?
Is this thought serving you?
99% of the time, the answer to both of these questions is no.
At that point, we decide if we want to change the thought and replace it with a thought that better serves them. We then find evidence to support our new, more empowering thought patterns.
4. Tap into your feelings
As humans, we all struggle with dealing with feelings. A coach’s job is to make sure you don’t hide and run from your feelings. I provide support to my clients as they work to confront their (sometimes messy) feelings.
This can be REALLY scary when you’ve been used to avoiding your emotions, putting on a happy face, and pretending everything is okay.
A coach becomes the mirror that asks you those powerful questions and lets you know that your feelings are valid. Remember: feelings are a necessary human experience.
5. Provide tools and skills to make changes
A coach gives you the tools and skills to make a significant change in your life.
When my clients decide to work with me, they are usually unhappy with where they’re at in their lives. They may feel there is something they desperately want to change or a goal that they want to reach.
Pause for one second.
Think about one result that you really, REALLY want. It could be a new job, a relationship, or to start running.
Now, think about how badly you want that result.
The right coach can help you get there by giving you the tools and skills you need to achieve it. You deserve support - you can’t always do it alone.
6. Make better, informed decisions
If you struggle to make changes in your life, then you might be in a pattern of avoiding making important decisions.
Many of the clients that I help with decision-making are stuck in what I like to call the “I don’t know” phase.
When you feel undecided, sometimes it helps to have someone ask you the right questions. By gathering more information, and working through what’s holding you back from deciding, you can finally make a decision that feels truly aligned.
7. Take consistent action
A coach holds you accountable to yourself and your goals. They make sure that you keep taking action - even when you really don’t feel like it. This helps you make strides a whole lot faster than if you’d tried to go it alone!
8. Prioritize your time
A lot of my clients work incredibly long hours, struggle with work-life balance, or procrastinate like crazy. A coach helps you look at all the different areas of your life and prioritize - what’s important right now and what’s going to help you get results?
If you’re not spending your time in an effective way, we’ll work together to change that. Success comes down to focusing your energy on the tasks that will make the biggest impact in your life.
9. Feel less alone
It’s no secret that a lot of us are separated from our families and friends right now. A coach is a support system that you can lean on when you are feeling lonely.
10. Have fun
Coaching is fun!
Don’t get me wrong, some sessions may feel uncomfortable, especially when you have to talk about messy feelings and deep-rooted limiting beliefs.
But most of the time, my clients and I have FUN! Many days, it feels like having a nice chat with a friend. I promise you - you’ll feel lighter and experience relief after every session.
Do you want to better understand your thoughts and feelings?
Do you want to reverse negative thought patterns or limiting beliefs about changing jobs, starting to date, or eating healthy?
Ready to become the BEST version of yourself?
Working with a coach offers you the support and tools you need to achieve your goals and make long-lasting changes in your life.
If you’re ready to learn more about my coaching services, you can find all the current ways to work with me here!