Do you have a desire to help people, expand your career or start a business as a life coach, but you’re not sure if you want to leave your current career?
If so, you’ve probably wondered if it’s possible to be a life coach and have a full-time job at the same time. The answer is yes! You can absolutely become a life coach without having to quit your current job.
Whether you already have a full-time career you love and you’re looking to add to your repertoire, or you think you’d love to become a full-time life coach, there are some things you should consider first before deciding what the right path is for you.
Best-selling author and world-renowned transformational coach, Mary Morrissey, says, “I’ve been in the coaching profession since 1981, so I have a fair amount of experience in this subject. I’ve trained and certified a lot of individuals who weren’t sure how to proceed. Some never wanted to leave their full-time jobs and some did, but they weren’t ready quite yet.”
As Morrissey discovered, there are many ways you can merge coaching with your full-time job or build your coaching business while working 40 hours a week (especially while balancing work and family). But before you explore your options, it’s a good idea to ask yourself three important questions first.
Doesn’t starting a life coaching business mean that you need to leave your current career behind?
If you’re wondering whether you’ll be forced to abandon work you love when becoming a life coach, let’s take a closer look at the real question, which is, “Will I have enough time and energy to juggle life coaching and my existing career at the same time?”
The answer is, it’s absolutely possible, but it depends on how busy you allow your career to make you, and how you intend to structure your life coaching business. There are plenty of options when it comes to shaping your coaching career!
If you don’t know the principles behind shaping your life, it can be easy for your current line of work to make you so busy that you can’t possibly fit anything else in.
Your subconscious, which loves to guard you from change and risk, will work to keep you swamped; if it senses a big adjustment in your life looming on the horizon, it will do its best to protect you by keeping you busy so the change cannot take place.
And if you’re planning to coach clients mostly 1-on-1, that can and will eat up far too much of your time.
That’s why it’s important to take control of your life and create the extra time you need. It’s also imperative that you know how to serve multiple people at once, so you can build a thriving coaching business without working all day, every day.
If you know how to serve many people simultaneously, and you can keep your existing career from eating your whole day, it is entirely possible to become a life coach while continuing your other line of work.
Your new-found wisdom might even enhance your existing practice, allowing you to bring your clients even bigger results!
So… what if you want to leave your career?
If you want to escape from your present career, the question becomes, “Can I make enough money as a life coach that I can afford to lose my current income source?”
Again, the answer is “yes,” but it depends on how you run your business. Do you know where your potential clients are, how to get their attention, how to enroll them, and how to coach them in a way that lets you serve many people at once, so that your income isn’t limited by the number of hours in a day?
And if you don’t know, should you let that stop you?
If your current career isn’t giving you joy, by all means, leave it behind. You were meant to spend your life making a difference by doing work you love, not simply surviving from one unhappy week to the next. And if you choose to become a life coach, and you understand and consistently apply the principles of success, you absolutely CAN create the lucrative practice you’re hoping for.
How you’ll know when it’s time to transition to coaching full time
One of the best questions you can ask yourself that will reveal whether it’s time to transition from your current career to becoming a full-time life coach is:
“What would I love?”
Would you love to stay in your current career, and start a part-time life coaching business?
Or, would you love to leave your current job or shut down your current business entirely, and become a full-time life coach?
Both paths are available to you, and you can always choose one path, and then change course later on down the road.
Many life coaches start out by staying in their current career, and then once they become certified, they begin coaching clients on evenings and weekends.
Once their businesses reach a certain growth point, they then leave their careers, and transition to life coaching full time.
Again, there’s no right or wrong path here. The direction you take depends 100% on the kind of career and lifestyle you’d love to create as a life coach!
How to start a coaching business and merge careers
There are many ways you can merge coaching with your full-time job or start a coaching business while you’re working 40 hours a week, especially while balancing work and family.
Here are stories about two people who have completed coach certification training with Life Mastery Institute for whom this was a consideration.
Erin had been an attorney for over 30 years when she came to Life Mastery Institute for coaching certification training.
She was tired of helping people solve disputes and wanted to help people live lives they loved instead.
She wanted to help clients design the kind of lives where disputes weren’t the natural outcome.
When she started, she set aside only one Saturday per month building her coaching business.
Pretty soon she was scaling back the time she spent at the law practice and increasing the amount of time she spent coaching. After about 18 months, she was able to leave her law practice and devote her time exclusively to coaching clients.
Erin is now doing work she loves – helping people create lives that are more in alignment with what they truly love.
Another coaching graduate, Cynthia, is a cardiologist who didn’t intend to leave her full-time job.
Cynthia wanted to learn to be a coach so that she could help her patients not just deal with the effects of disease, but to help them develop a mindset that generates different results in their lives and increase their vitality.
Cynthia coaches her patients and treats them, so that their entire sense of well-being is transformed.
If you love the job you’re in, you might want to nourish transformation for clients within your existing practice.
Or, coaching can be a stepping stone toward a brand-new, full-time profession.
The important thing to know is this: You’re in charge and you get to decide!
How starting a coaching business can impact your family
Starting a life coaching business can be frightening, especially if you leave your job. Switching careers, especially if you’re new to the line of work, involves a period of transition and a great deal of change.
What if your new lifestyle is worse than your old one? What if your coaching leaves you less time for your family? And what if you leave your old line of work behind, and find out that your new one can’t support you and the people who count on you?
The following are some of the ways in which starting a life coaching business can affect your family for better or worse, depending on how you handle the change.
1. They’ll learn from your courage and faith.
Most people wait to pursue their dreams until the circumstances are perfect.
In other words, they wait forever. And their children learn from that.
Your way of being, and the actions you let your children see, speak to them more powerfully than any words you can say. If you want them to pursue their dreams, it’s important to lead by example.
Instead of waiting for the right circumstances to happen, life coaches create those circumstances for themselves.
As a coach, you would show your family that their dreams are worth taking a chance on, and that their circumstances don’t have to rule their lives.
That doesn’t mean you have to put your family at financial risk in order to become a coach. That would probably be out of alignment with your values, and your dream and your values should never conflict.
One of the great things about starting a life coaching business is that you don’t have to give up your existing career and income stream in order to get started. A good business model enables you to earn additional money without having to give up your current career, so you can maintain your financial security while starting your business on the side.
The transition requires dedication, focus and passion, but many people have done it successfully.
2. You’ll have more time with your family – or less, depending on how you do things.
Will you insist on doing everything yourself? Or will you get help?
Many people try to be the “Lone Ranger,” creating all of their programs and marketing systems from scratch, and learning everything by trial and error. This causes them to spend years making less money, helping fewer people, and working longer hours than they need to.
The life coaches who get the biggest, fastest results are the ones who are willing to follow a trail that’s already been blazed, shortening their learning curve, and reducing the time it takes for them to create a thriving business.
They also use these two vital time-saving methods:
- They delegate work they don’t specialize in. Whether it’s unskilled work they could outsource at a low cost, or highly skilled work in an area outside their field of expertise, ALL successful people get help. This lets them spend less time spinning their wheels on busy work, and more time moving the financial needle doing what they love.
- Use a pre-made coaching program instead of making one from scratch. Find a certification process that gives students a proven program they can use to help their clients, so you don’t have to waste months creating one from the ground up. This frees you up to start helping people right away, and to spend more time with your family.
In the corporate world, your career is often influenced by other people’s decisions regarding whether or not to promote you, to retire or quit, or to keep all their current employees. Your income is limited by the number of hours you trade for dollars, and you can easily become stuck beneath a glass ceiling.
But as a life coach, you’re free from those limitations.
Your success is governed only by the amount of focus, energy and mastery you choose to put toward it, so your income can skyrocket to a whole new level!
Your focus and energy is up to you.
This is important, because one of the biggest obstacles new life coaches encounter is that they’re good at helping clients, but they aren’t sure how to run the business side of their practice. They don’t know how to attract and help all the clients they want, while having time for their families and themselves.
Balancing work and life when starting a new coaching business
If you’re passionate about building an impactful, lucrative coaching business while creating a lifestyle you truly love (and are able to enjoy), there are three practices you must master.
Practice #1. Use the principles of success to control your to-do list.
Part of being a life coach is teaching other people how to shape their own realities, so they can create their circumstances instead of their circumstances controlling them. So to become a successful coach yourself, you will need to master these principles and apply them to your own life.
So let’s take a look at your current situation. Are you too busy to become a coach? If so, what exactly is keeping you swamped?
Are there tasks you’re doing that you aren’t suited for that could be done more quickly by someone else? Are there things you’re good at but aren’t passionate about that could be delegated?
You might think that these things need to be done, and no one else will do them right or you can’t afford to get help – but that would be allowing your circumstances to control your life. So take a moment and think about it: What do you WANT to be doing with your day?
What’s keeping you from doing it, and what action steps can you take to start shifting that?
Practice #2. Merge your business and your coaching.
If you’re in an industry that complements life coaching, becoming a coach can add another layer to your services, and allow you to serve your clients on a whole new level.
By learning the mindset and principles of success, and knowing what causes failure, you’ll be able to discover the root problems behind your clients’ challenges. This allows you to not only help them overcome those challenges, but also to prevent the problems from popping up again, so the results you create are bigger, faster and longer-lasting.
Now you can raise your fees – you are providing value far above many of your peers, and you deserve to be paid accordingly!
Practice #3. Set up a system that lets you coach multiple people at once.
Yes, it’s true: Designing group programs can be more work up front than simply enrolling clients and coaching them one on one. That is, if you’re doing the work of creating the program yourself.
Before I get into that, let’s consider the cost of coaching solely one-on-one. With this method, you trap yourself in a cycle of trading dollars for hours and your income will always be limited by the number of hours that you work in a day. Even if you get well known and you’re able to charge more, your income and free time will always be competing with each other, leaving you with less of both than you deserve.
Because of that, it’s highly suggested that you use a system that lets you serve multiple clients at once.
This removes those frustrating limits from your income and impact, and allows you to change hundreds or even thousands more lives, without spending hundreds or thousands more hours.
Utilizing this system instead of “trading hours for dollars,” you can fit life coaching into your schedule, so your family and existing career doesn’t suffer because of it.
Becoming a life coach full time
For some people, work is just a means to an end. Earn enough money, make ends meet, feed the family and pay the mortgage.
For others, it’s a sacred mission. It’s something they enjoy waking up to each morning, and it fills their hearts with hope and joy.
Which situation are you in now?
If you’re in a career that isn’t exciting and fulfilling to you, it’s nothing to be ashamed of. But remember: You deserve so much more.
You deserve to be doing work that you truly enjoy.
You deserve to be able to take pride in what you do, knowing that you’re making an impact on the people around you and the world as a whole.
You deserve to reach the end of the work day with plenty of free time to spend with your family and friends, and with no nagging worries that you haven’t made enough money that day.
Is your career or business doing that for you?
So, take a few minutes to think about your work, and what you want to create with it. It doesn’t have to be a big, daunting task that severely interrupts your day; just set a timer for 10 minutes and contemplate the following questions.
- Do you enjoy your work, and look forward to doing it each day?
- Are you proud of the changes you’re creating in the world?
- Are you making the money your time is worth, and taking enough of that time for yourself, to enjoy your family, your friends and your life?
- And if you aren’t, then what is keeping you stuck in that position, unable to create a business or career that’s everything you desire and deserve?
The most important thing to know is that you get to choose! You get to create whatever you want for your life and your career based on your vision for your life.
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