When the recession started in America, people lost their homes and consumer confidence plummeted, yet one industry according to Ibis World increased its market share during that time and that is life coaching. Even as the economy picked up this industry continued to grow. Yet, even though life coaching is a growing industry and some coaches are doing very well from it, there will always be some coaches who struggle to get their business started, and that’s not because of a lack of opportunities, it has more to do with their own habits and beliefs.
Whenever we do something new you we step outside our comfort zone and it is always scary at first, even for me. When I first started life coaching I often thought to myself, What do I do next? But I also knew that I had more knowledge on life coaching than my clients so I kept moving forward. My clients made progress, they were happy with the coaching, and that encouraged me to keep going. If someone had commented that they didn’t like what I was doing, which fortunately they didn’t, I would have asked them how they would like to be coached, or how I could do it better.
I am a bit obsessive about practise but this single habit has been a major contributor to my success as a coach and in business. When I wanted to be a public speaker I would stand in front of a mirror and give a speech. I would record it and listen to it over and over again. Yes, I cringed at what I was hearing most of the time, but moving through being bad enabled me to speak in front of hundreds and sometimes thousands of people. When I first became a financial planner I sat up in bed for an hour each night reading prospectuses from different investment companies.
If you never allow yourself to move through your fears you won’t gain confidence. I always tell my students to practise, practise, practise. Some coaches feel confident after eight clients, for another person it may be 15 – 20 clients. One of the keys to being a good life coach is to practise on volunteers until you feel as if you know what you are doing because you will never make much money from something you feel you are bad at. Fear will always get in the way.
Life coaches often say to me, ‘How can I coach a person on how to get married when I’m not married myself?’ or something similar. You can as long as you walk your talk. You don’t have to be perfect, or live a perfect life to be a good coach.
Make it Okay to Make Money
Now it may seem strange to some but some people won’t allow themselves to make money from doing something they consider to be spiritual, or helping others. Yet isn’t that what makes life meaningful?
There is nothing wrong with money and if you think there is you probably need to work with a life coach yourself as that is a major limiting belief.
If you have a problem with charging for your services then consider charging different fees for different people. You can also give some of your time away to people who can’t afford to pay. Just be careful to set a limit on what you give. Giving needs to be balanced with giving to yourself otherwise you could burn out and become a poor role model for your clients.
You Need to Allocate a Set Time to Work on Your Business
Most people are busy and work full time when they start their life coaching practice so if you wait until you have time to spend on your business you probably won’t do much. You need to allocate a specific time each week for letting people know you are in business. This could be as little as half an hour a day. That adds up to 15 hours a month, which is more than some people put in. If you can find more time than this, that is great.
There is someone out there looking for what you have to offer. Believe in yourself and make sure you let people know you are taking on coaching clients.