Feeling called to become a professional coach?
That was me in 2005. I mustered up the courage to follow my calling and apply for my first coach training program. Fast forward to now, after being a professional coach for over 18 years, I've learned a few things you should consider before submitting that application.
First, I want to say I'm not talking about the "Get Certified as Coach for $27!" certificate mills. I'm talking about applying to a robust, deeper-dive, ICF Accredited master's degree-level of coach training program. Understand that the two aren't even in the same ballpark.
Second, I am sharing with you what I wished someone had told me before applying. I had yet to learn what I was getting myself into back then. I also hadn't seen schools talk about these elements until after someone had enrolled.
Would I have reconsidered my decision if I knew then what I know now? Not at all. However, had I known about these elements, I would have understood what I was learning much sooner.
Let's dive in!
The number one consideration you need to know before applying for coach training is this: Learning coaching, authentic coaching, is one of the hardest things you will challenge yourself to do. Really? Yes. But isn't coaching just so positive, future-focused, goal-oriented, and fun? Yes, it is all those things, AND it is one of the most challenging approaches to master.
Reason #1 – The brain is wired to give advice, locate answers, and help. In authentic coaching, the client locates their answers and generates their solutions. A masterful coach coaches the client deeper into their personal power and wisdom. In coaching, the client is the expert.
Why? Simply put, we can have expertise in external processes or things, but we will never be an expert of someone else's truth. Period. A masterful coach honors this truth.
If you want to advise, be an expert, or provide life guidance, you are looking at the wrong profession. That would be counseling or therapy, where the professional is hired to give advice and direction or provide a diagnosis.
In coaching, you are still an expert though. Through rigorous training and mentoring, you become an expert in the coaching process and the avenues for self-mastery.
Reason #2 – You have an ego. We all do. The ego loves to be the star of the show. The ego believes the more I help someone, the more value I have! To be a masterful coach, we must learn the art of quieting the ego in service of placing the client in the spotlight. Don't get me wrong, your coaching clients will still consider you a hero at the end of a session, but it won't be because of what you showcased. It will be because you helped them see their truth, empowerment, and wisdom.
No other profession comes close to doing this. If this inspires you, you are looking at the correct career path!
Reason #3 – Learning to become self-aware, bias-aware, and show up neutral is a steep learning curve and a rewiring of the brain.
While showing up unbiased and neutral does sound easy, putting this into practice and sitting in the unknown to serve another person's growth takes more than practice. It is an inner spiritual shift into our own personal mastery.
Coaching requires us to develop compassion, show up unbiased, and become big-picture problem solvers. It is a deep-dive journey. You will learn more in your ICF coach training and one-to-one mentoring than you would ever learn in a degree, where the emphasis is theory and lecture.
There you have it! These are the three key considerations:
1. Is this truly the right profession for me?
2. How willing am I to set my ego aside to serve a client?
3. Am I willing to embrace my personal self-mastery journey?
If you said yes, to all three, I want to welcome you to the coaching world! Coaching education requires deeper study, self-reflection, and willingness to do something that will feel foreign at first. Coaching mastery requires practice, mentorship, and dedication.
If you are up for the challenge and want to journey with people as they locate their truth, I invite you to go for it and submit that application! If another approach is calling you, like advising or counseling, then I applaud you for honoring that truth.
Ultimately, if you decide coaching is your calling, understanding that mastery will take patience and a deep self-trust will shorten your learning curve. The benefit? Coach training, education, and mentoring amplify positive growth in every area of your life.
I wonder how many people feel a calling to a life purpose and give up before they make it. When I see this happens, it truly breaks my heart, and I've seen it lead to depression and take people's spark away.
Unfortunately, living in fear is a modern norm. Yet, fear is not the truth of what is possible.
In this article, we explore how to follow a calling by using fear as a catalyst in your journey!
It happened again... a client stated, "I don't think I'm good enough for what I'm called to do. I haven't had any success yet." When I hear this, I have loads of compassion. This used to be me.
In rock climbing, I observed a pattern. Every climb, no matter how easy or hard, I stop, look down, and panic. You see, I have a passion for climbing and a fear of heights. Thanks God!
All jokes aside, it is a real experience. I've now come to call this "normal climbing jitters" or NCJ. So when it happens, I remind myself that it doesn't mean I can't climb this climb. This is just my typical freak-out moment. This self-awareness allows my brain the space to calm down and click back in.
I've also noticed that when people feel called to start a business or take on a big new endeavor, "normal calling jitters" also happen. I just watched the documentary called Iron Cowboy. This is a film about James Lawrence. James challenged himself to do 50 Iron Man marathons in 50 Days, over 50 States. What?! Yep. The documentary exemplifies his struggle with NCJ (normal calling jitters) and how he overcame them.
Another classic NCJ story is captured in the documentary Free Solo where Alex Honnold climbs El Capitan without any climbing gear and lived to share his story. This is another prime example of people playing big and learning to discern the difference between intuition and fear while pushing through to success.
So why do we sometimes tell ourselves the story that we can't, or we aren't cut out for what we feel so deeply called to do?
A simple truth. Fear feels real. Stress hormones pulse through our veins, our thoughts race, and doubts creep in. We experience fear as real. This is when many people fail just by giving up.
The good news is that we don't have to give up when we learn to go within.
Within each one of us exists possibilities. New adventures in life require us to activate new possibilities within ourselves.
So instead of assuming, "I'm not cut out for this because I haven't reached success yet, " you can:
The above approach is a way to reroot and pivot when the NCJ pops up.
I have also come across a spiritual and energetic formula you can apply. The formula is this: I can 100% envision myself doing this calling + my calling feels ordinary = success is around the corner.
Let's dive into how this shows up. On a scale from 1-10 (10 being 100% "yes, of course" and one equals "not at all"), how easily does the vision of your calling come to you without fear? In other words, how close are you to "Oh yes, of course, I'll reach this goal. No problem, no sweat".
When considering your answer avoid judging yourself. Just note the answer as a data point. When I started as a new coach, I wanted to be a success so badly, but it seemed WAY too good to be true, so I was at a 2-3. The truth of what we are experiencing internally does not define the truth of what is possible for us.
If, on your scale, you fall below an 8, then your work is to close the gap. The closer you get to a ten, the more effortless success naturally comes. Why? Because a ten represents fully aligned energy. Fear fragments us from activating the possibilities within ourselves. Those possibilities are the leverage points for your success.
Five steps to closing the gaps:
You can do this for 12 weeks, then keep it up, or shift into once or twice a week until you feel greater ease around your calling.
Please also remember to give yourself grace. Nothing great is created overnight. Your calling is no exception. Give yourself five years. Yes, five years of space to grow roots that bare new fruits. If your calling is strong, then five years will be a drop in the bucket in the big scheme of things.
Our congratulations go out to our latest graduate of the CPIC program, Cindy Campano!!
We are thrilled to have you join us as a certified coach and fellow colleague.
We are excited about the positive impact you will leave in your clients lives.
Meet Janet Harvey!
Janet is the 2012 president of ICF Global and CEO of Invite Change. Invite Change is a coaching and human development organization that shapes a world where people love their life’s work. She is a master certified coach and accredited educator who has engaged adults, teams, and global enterprises for nearly 30 years to invite change that sustains well-being and excellence.
You can learn more about Janet's work at:
Janet has also been kind enough to share with our audiences, two excerpts of her writings on the topics of Generative Wholeness and sovereignty in coaching. Click on the image to access the article:
This week's resource is a book featuring our instructor and coach, Michael Tucker. It is an excellent read if you are newer to the nuances of masterful coaching or love to gain more depth and perspective on coaching.
Conversations About Being a Coach is a book for coaches, written by coaches from a social and cultural awareness perspective. This book features 18 authors, including our very own Coach and Trainer, Michael Tucker. It follows a powerful storyline of a future coach apprenticing with a mentor.
The book proceeds benefit the non-profit Coaching For Everyone.
Conversations About Being a Coach
Compiled by Dr. Victor McGuire
Claudia Weber is the Founder and Executive Director of Results Through Resilience LLC. Her expertise is focused on coaching individuals and teams to reduce stress/anxiety, identify their optimal experience and transform to achieve their goals. She is sought out as a international speaker, trainer and workshop leader and recently became the Northern AZ ICF Ambassador. She has been a corporate leader, and culture transformer for over 22 years.
If you are interested in working with Claudia:
Clients that would like to focus on reducing stress/anxiety, removing obstacles and changing beliefs in order to change their life are welcome to contact me at: www.ResultsThroughResilience.com