A Personal Coach is Not a Guru or a Superhero

The thirst for success, fitness, and happiness leads many to seek out a personal coach. They want YOU; do YOU have what they want?

You don’t have to be a guru or superhero to give your clients what they seek. Mystical vision and superpowers are not needed. They don’t expect, need, or want that any of that nonsense. You help develop rather than impose. You give your clients choices and enable them to make their own decisions. You point them to the pathway, but they walk down it. To tread on that old parable; you teach them to fish instead of giving them a fish.

The One Thing NOT to do as a Personal Coach

Do not attempt to completely change someone by giving them a complete set of instructions. They will resist and you will fail as a coach. You certainly won’t be making a living as a personal coach for very long.

Personal coaching is not about changing someone or transforming them into someone else. It’s not about making them someone they are not. You’re not a mad scientist in the laboratory creating a brand new human being. You are merely helping them change themselves by designing a working methodology for achieving goals.

Being a personal coach involves identifying existing personal strengths and weaknesses and then creating a customized strategy to emphasize the positive and suppress the negative. You create a road map, or a personal GPS system, for clients to get from point A to point B in their quest for success and goal attainment. You provide your clients with tools they can use to achieve their personal, career, and life goals. When you give them these tools, they realize how to change themselves.

Why Knowing What Not to do as a Personal Coach Matters

You will most likely have clients who have already achieved some measure of success. These clients might want to ameliorate an aspect of their life that is lacking, or modify behaviors that are detrimental to the attainment of their goals. Successful people don’t need to completely change, they merely need to learn ways to apply their successes in one aspect of their lives to a different part of their lives.

For example, a successful executive may come to you seeking a way to learn proper time management so fitness and health become a part of his daily schedule. You do not want to make him feel that he needs to radically change his personality; he has achieved success in his career, he must be doing something right. Instead, try to determine how he has managed his career, and apply those methods to the plan you create for him to achieve his fitness and health goals.

Why One-Size-Fits-All Coaching Doesn’t Work

In addition to understanding that clients do not need a complete transformation, it is important to understand that personal coaching is not a one size fits all application. Everyone is different; they have different strengths and different weaknesses. Clients have different goals and different roadblocks preventing them from achieving those goals. Trying to use a one size fits all strategy is like trying to put the same one size fits all tee shirt on a jockey and an offensive lineman. It just won’t fit them both!

As a personal coach, you can toss the superhero cape and the guru robes in the trash. You aren’t there to use superpowers to create a new person. Before you see your first client, make sure you fully understand your role as a facilitator and a guide. Don’t change them, show them how to change themselves.

Would you like an endless stream of new coaching clients? Simply fill out the form to the right with your first name and email and I’ll send you free videos with step-by-step blueprints for generating a massive income from high paying coaching clients.

Fred Philips
Business Coach
Writing Team, Coaches Training Blog Community

FREE Video Course: How to Build a High Paying Coaching Business

Facebook comments:


  1. says

    Hi Fred,

    Thanks for sharing this common sense approach to coaching.

    I agree that all clients are unique and have to be evaluated individually.
    You can’t be everything to everyone and the only logical course to take is the one you suggested.

    The job of a Coach or Mentor is to provide the plan, the tools, guidance and direction and the Client needs to be accountable and integrate the plan into their daily behavior to benefit from the strategies.

    “You can lead a horse to water, but……

    Thanks for the tips,

  2. marquita herald says

    Great advice … and I’m especially happy to see you address the “one size fits all issue.” I think it’s so important for anyone considering hiring a coach to really do their homework and find someone who has solid references and experience.

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