How to Become a Life Coach in Virginia

Life coaching is a career choice that may appeal to you if you enjoy talking to others and helping them work toward and ultimately achieve their personal or professional goals. In the course of your work, you’ll act as a professional partner to your clients, working closely with them to help them achieve results.

You’ll offer motivation, support and guidance to people in order to help them meet their potential. It’s the type of work that really makes a difference in the lives of others. If you live in Virginia and have always wanted to have a fulfilling career centered around helping others, life coaching may be what you’re looking for.

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Requirements for Becoming a Life Coach in Virginia

Formal training isn’t officially required in order to become a life coach in Virginia. But you’re likely to find that clients or potential employers usually look for candidates who have completed some form of professional training and/or earned certification. This helps to offer proof that you have the skillset needed to work in this profession.

The International Coach Federation (ICF) offers three levels of life coach certification. These include:

  • Associate Certified Coach – The first level of certification requires you to complete at least 60 hours of training, along with over 100 hours of coaching experience.
  • Professional Certified Coach – The next level requires over 125 hours of training, along with over 500 hours coaching experience.
  • Master Certified Coach – The top level of expertise can be demonstrated by attaining this certification, which requires more than 200 hours training and more than 2,500 hours coaching experience.

Virginia Life Coach Training

There are many options for life coach training in Virginia, including both online and in-person options. Examples of options for life coach training in Virginia include:

  • Center for Coaching Certification – If you’re interested in completing your life coach training remotely, this training consists of a series of classes, research, report writing, group sessions and coaching practicum, all online.
  • American Life Coach Academy – This organization offers both online and in-person options for ICF-accredited life coach certification. If you’re interested in on-site training in a classroom setting, you can choose from locations in several states. Residents of MD/DC/VA may want to consider the Maryland location, which is a 60-hour training program that lasts from Thursday to Sunday.

Job Outlook and Salary Potential for Life Coaches in Virginia

Life coaching is a relatively new career choice. The Bureau of Labor Statistics combines data about life coaching with other careers that are somewhat similar, such as vocational counselors. In 2015, the average annual income for life coaches was approximately $61,900.

How much you earn working as a life coach depends on whether you work for others or start your own company, and by how many hours you put in. Life coaching can be a nice side income for you, or you can work to build up a large clientele in order to increase your income.

Working as a Life Coach in Virginia

As an industry, life coaching is growing rapidly, because people are becoming more aware of the difference a life coach can make in their lives. This creates exciting opportunities to work where or when is most comfortable for you. You may want to work for organizations such as hospitals or corporations, or you may prefer to start your own life coaching business.

You can focus on specific challenges such as relationships, career, health or discovering passions, or you may want to be available to help people navigate whatever type of challenge they’re facing. While coaching opportunities can be found just about anywhere, in Virginia the biggest opportunities are likely to be in large cities such as Virginia Beach, Norfolk and Richmond.