How to become a life coach with no life experience

Do you need to study for 5, 10, 15 years to become a life coach?
Matt Lavars dives into the four major categories to becoming a successful and professional coach without life experience

What is Coaching?

Many people think that to become a successful and professional coach, you have to study for five to ten years before you can even start to help someone, that is not true.

You can help people so much faster if you focus on developing competence in these four main areas.

A lot of people misunderstand what coaching actually is. They think it's about giving people advice and about fixing people. It's neither of those two things.

Coaching is about creating a space for our clients to be able to discover what they have that is already within them.

These are the four major categories that will allow you to become a successful and professional coach.

  1. Listening

    The first major category is to have training in what's called listening or deep listening. A lot of people don't listen to each other, they're just talking over each other, waiting for the other person to stop talking so then they can talk. This shuts down growth.

    We want to create a space of openness, curiosity and a willingness to learn and this is done through listening.

    We want to pay attention to body language, and there's so much to learn from simply observing our clients and coming from a space and creating a space where we see our client as whole and complete. That can actually affect them just through our experience and the way we're seeing them

  1. Validation

    The second major category of coaching is all about validation. I like to joke and say that I think most of us live in a validation vacuum. We never really hear the words that we want to hear.

    I've spoken to many people, and they'll say that my mum or my dad don't even say I love you. They can't bring themselves to say that validation because they grew up in a family where they never said that either. And so, a lot of us simply don't hear the words that we need to hear.

    A lot of coaching is about validation, to say to our clients, hey, you're doing great, and they'll go really? Am I? This is because they're judging themselves.

    One of the biggest problems that a lot of people have is they're judging themselves for thinking what they're thinking or feeling. A coach can help create a safe space by saying, Hey, it's all right. That's okay. That's normal.

  2. Questions

    This is where a coach starts to become really effective. A coach knows what questions to ask, and this is where a lot of the training for coaches lies is in learning what questions to ask our clients.

    The quality of our thinking is determined by the quality of the questions that we ask ourselves. Now, the quality of the questions that we ask ourselves are going to determine the quality of the outcomes that we have in our life and ultimately the quality of our life all comes down to our thinking.

    One of the things that Einstein said is you can't actually solve the problems in life that you've got without changing the thinking that has created it.

    How do we do that? Through asking great questions that are going to spark new perspectives and new ways of seeing things.

    One of the things that Wayne Dyer says is if you change the way you see things, the things that you actually look at are going to change.

“TCI is the best decision I have ever made!”

Felicity Alexander joined TCI to up-skill for her corporate role. What she found personally and professionally was so much more than that.

Felicity Alexander Accredited Professional Coach
Felicity AlexanderAccredited Professional Coach
  1. Education 

    The final major category of coaching is education. There are times when the client doesn’t have access to what they need because they'd never been taught. And so coaching bridges the gap where the family stopped, coaching continues. So, I like to call coaching reparenting.

    For example, in my family, I didn't really learn too much about how to express my emotions.

    Coaching for me has helped bridge that gap and helped me to learn that it's okay to be angry and sad and as a man, I'm allowed to cry.

    Coaching has been a great education for me, and it's been something that I love passing down to all of the students here and all of my clients that I get to work with.

If you get training in all of these four aspects, that is listening, validating, questioning, and education you will develop the competence, which will turn into confidence and that’s what you will need to get started to become a successful coach.

Matt, Ilse and students at the Coaching Success launch


One of Australia's leading coaches, trainers and speakers, and head facilitator at The Coaching Institute. In between mentoring thousands of coaches and leaders all around Australasia and helping others build incredible culture, Matt is passionate about fitness and music. His healthy office lunches whipped up in five minutes are the stuff of legend

Matt Lavars life coaching
Matt LavarsThe Coaching Institute