Life Coaching: From Dreaming, To Transitioning, To Enjoying It
So, you’ve settled it within you — you’re going to leave your 9 to 5 job for a career as a life coach.
And here are your reasons:
• You’ve been bothered for years now by that nagging thought in your head that your best has not been utilised for what you really want to do. You’re not getting any younger and it seems like you’re running out of time to pursue your passion.
• The real YOU is trapped within the confines of your 9 to 5 job.
• You don’t see yourself anymore working for the interests of the company but rather helping individuals be the best that they can be.
Following this dream could be one of the best moves in your life, but remember – the road to your dream is strewn with obstacles and challenges. Even if you’ve established coaching as your calling, don’t dive in right away. Test the waters first – wade, get the feel of it, and face your inner realities from within and those from without:
• Is this what you truly want? Make sure that the choice you have made is not just another alternative to a reality you want to escape from. Take a look at your history. Has it been your habit to jump from one job to another after the honeymoon stage is over? Is it just a want or meeting a need?
Calling is the most critical element in having fulfilment in what you are doing, so make sure you have that calling. Calling is a personal thing. It speaks to you in a language you alone can understand. Obeying that call will enable you to live a purpose-driven life that will produce in you a sense of fulfilment. Is it your calling to connect with other human beings by meeting needs, providing help and making a difference in their lives?
• Do you have inhibitions? You will be challenged to set these aside as you aggressively look for opportunities and seek and reach out potential clients. You have to brand and sell yourself.
• Are you prepared to work harder? There are no set hours but you might just find yourself working overtime. It might take you even more perseverance, commitment, patience, sacrifice and even energy than what you used to give in your workplace.
Do you have enough savings to start on your own? You can start coaching on the side while you’re still employed. Consider your current job as a training ground and start saving. This will make starting your business less stressful.
• Are you prepared for the business aspect? Coaching is considered as an entrepreneurial job. Your business may not take off immediately. You’ve got to prepare well your business plan: come up with marketing strategies, prepare a tax entity structure, decide on your goals and cast your business’ vision. You have to make it a goal to generate a good income because this would enable you to help more people. You may seek professional help in this area if your finances would allow.
• Have you prepared those who are close to you —your families and friends? Let them understand why you’re making this career move. Share with them your passion and calling for they will be your cheerleaders and emotional supporters.
• Are you prepared for a lifetime of learning? Don’t rest on your laurels. Seek to learn from your every coaching experience, grab every opportunity for growth in your field, and learn from other life coaches. Devote yourself to becoming an expert in this field.
Having faced, considered and accepted these realities and your heart is still strongly drawn to being a full-time life coach, you can now enter coaching with a sense of positivity. This is important because you will be passing this on to your clients. You are now entering your most fulfilling and rewarding job because you have answered your calling.
• You are now your own boss and you have the freedom to set your own schedule (experts advise to set five days a week). Your schedule should now work for you and not the other way around. Be faithful to your schedule as this plays a significant role in your coaching success.
• You now have your very own agenda. You are now ready to take risks, to explore other horizons of life coaching and to take responsibility for your own actions.
• Your heart and mind is now free from that nagging feeling of “there must be something more out there for me.” You are now aligned with your passion and purpose. In the shortness and brevity of life you can now say, “I’m not wasting my borrowed time.” You are now climbing on a new ladder in your life which, you are sure, does not lean on a wrong wall. Your efforts become more meaningful as you chart your personal progress.
• You are now drawn to making impact rather than accumulating wealth. Although your earning potential as a life coach does not have a cap (in fact it can soar beyond your expectation), your foremost concern is making a difference in other people’s lives.
• You are now the architect of the life you want to live and are free to Iive life the way you have designed. You will have no one else to blame but yourself if along the way you fail. But failures are part of life’s journey. Embrace your mistakes. You can pick yourself up again and continue on your journey as a wiser person. Let your experiences inspire others to move on to greater heights. That’s the beauty of being a life coach — you don’t only have a job but also a life that encourages, uplifts, and inspires others.
• As a life coach you are challenged to walk the talk. This way you have no other option but to be authentic. You don’t anymore represent a company; you now represent yourself — and that is freedom. You are free from the shackles of pretense and cover-ups. You are not weighed down by the need to put your best foot forward. As you are freed, so are your clients.
Bold moves should be accompanied with wisdom, not stifled by fear, and inspired by your passion and calling.
To learn more about life coaching contact the Australian Institute of Professional Coaches on 1300 309 360 or email [email protected]. We look forward to speaking with you soon.