You're thinking that you'd like to build a new career as a life coach. There's a number of things to consider about becoming a life coach but the biggest one is how you'll get trained.
There are a lot of options out there for life coach training. Getting your training online is a viable option. Here's a quick guide to what you need to know about getting a life coach certification online.
What does a life coach do?
You might be wondering exactly what does a life coach do? A lot of people have a distorted view of what a coach does. A coach doesn't advise (that's a consultant) or tell a client what to do or how to do it. Instead, a coach works to help a client find their own solution to problems.
A coach works with a client to focus on things they can do in the present moment that will move them forward towards their future goals.
The International Coaching Federation (ICF) defines coaching as:
...partnering with clients in a thought-provoking and creative process that inspires them to maximize their personal and professional potential. The process of coaching often unlocks previously untapped sources of imagination, productivity and leadership.
How much does getting a life coach certification online cost?
Online life coach training programs vary in quality and what they provide. When shopping around, you'll want to be sure that you're comparing apples to apples. For example, some online life coach training programs are barebones. They include only the actual certification training. Others may be more full-featured and include mentoring and support in getting your life coach business going such as the Starseed Academy Coach Certification program.
Typically, getting a life coach certification online will cost $2,000 - $10,000. You may find online life coach training programs below $2,000, but you'll want to carefully consider the quality of the program.
How can you tell if a program is high quality?
The quality of an online life coach certification program can be a big concern for new coaches. You want to make sure that the training you receive is the very best. You also want to make sure that your certification training sets you up for success as a life coach.
Fortunately, there are some easy-to-spot markers that indicate a quality program. While life coaching as an industry is largely unregulated, the International Coaching Federation (ICF) has become a widely recognized standards body for the coaching industry. The ICF has created a core set of coaching skills that any life coach should have as well as standards for the ethical practice of coaching.
Fortunately, the ICF has an accreditation process for life coach training programs. To be accredited by the ICF, a training program must teach the core skills and the code of ethical conduct. Getting your life coach certification online through an ICF-accredited program will assure you that the program is a high-quality program. A couple additional things to look for include whether the faculty are ICF certified (required for ICF accredited programs), whether the program teaches marketing and business skills, and what level of support they provide once you get certified.
What's different about in-person training vs. getting a life coach certification online?
Besides the obvious difference in the format, there are a few differences between getting a life coach certification in-person and getting a life coach certification online. One big difference is how much time you have to process the skills you're learning and develop your abilities as a coach. Many in-person certification programs are short, intensive training. For many people, this style of training doesn't give adequate time to practice and absorb the material. Online programs can provide more time for practice and learning.
Another obvious difference with an online program is that you aren't limited to taking programs that are close to where you live. Online training provides you with many more options for life coach training without having the added expense of traveling. Travel is a huge disadvantage to an in-person program. The cost of airfare and hotel stays on top of the training costs can make it very expensive to get a life coach certification. None of these expenses apply when training online.
Another advantage to online training is that they are easily recorded. Most online programs give you access to the recordings which makes it easier to review what you're learning.
How long does it take to get a life coach certification online?
It's easy to feel in a hurry when you're excited about switching careers. When it comes to becoming a life coach, how long it takes really depends on you. There are two main factors that determine how long it takes to get a life coach certification online.
The first thing that influences how long it takes to get a life coach certification online is how long the training program is. Fortunately, there are often a lot of different options for training programs. Most online life coach training programs last anywhere from 3 months to 1 year. Some of the shorter programs fit more in by meeting more than once a week. You'll want to consider how much time you have to devote to your studies.
The other factor that affects how long it take to get a life coach certification online is practice coaching. Most online life coach training programs require that you complete a certain number of hours of practice coaching with actual clients. The sooner you can find practice clients to work with, the less time it will take to complete your certification.
Which online life coach training program is best for me?
The best online life coach training program is going to be the one that aligns with the kind of life coach you want to be. There are online life coach training programs that focus on different aspects of coaching such as spirituality, relationships, health, or career. While you can find a general life coach training program, most life coaches find success by narrowing the kinds of issues they coach on. Look for an online life coach training program that matches the kinds of issues you want to coach.
Getting a life coach certification online is an excellent way to move forward with becoming a life coach. Using the information in this guide, you should be able to easily determine which online life coach training programs are the best fit for you.