Are you ready to embark on a journey to improve your health but not sure of where to start? What if you had an educated and accomplished coach who could help you identify habits that need to change? A health coach just might be the professional you’re looking for.
What Does a Health Coach Do?
Your life is a collection of small, everyday habits. A health coach is someone who can help you adjust those habits to better serve your health. Not only can a health coach assist with basic things like weight loss, but they also help clients thrive across seven key areas of wellness: physical, emotional, intellectual, spiritual, environmental, social and occupational.
Using tools like intuitive listening, habit-change coaching and healthy lifestyle design, health coaches provide their clients with strategies that set the stage for long-term, holistic well-being.
Why Do I Need a Health Coach?
Many people feel they can take on their wellness objectives on their own. This often proves to be challenging because it lacks the accountability factor. Remember, there is absolutely no shame in seeking out a health coach—many of the best athletes in the world have coaches!
People often seek out a health coach because they want to achieve:
- Long-lasting healthy habits
- Weight loss or gain
- Stress management
- The ability to make empowered dietary choices
- Management of a specific health condition
- A release of unhealthy habits (such as smoking, excessive drinking or binge eating)
What Can’t a Health Coach Help Me With?
Health coaches play key roles in helping people achieve their health goals, however, it is important to understand the boundaries of their expertise. Health coaches cannot take the place of your doctor or psychologist and are not trained to help you diagnose and treat a disease. Health coaches are also not able to prescribe medications.
What to Look for in a Health Coach
Before you set out to find a health coach, it can be helpful to write out a list of what exactly you are looking for. Not all health coaches can serve all people. Setting some parameters around your needs will allow you to find the professional who can best support your wellness journey.
Here are some things to consider when searching for a health coach:
- Location: Do you want to work with someone in person or virtually?
- Specialty: What kind of expertise do you want your health coach to have? Do you have a specific condition or concern that needs to be addressed?
- Credentials and experience: What credentials are important to you in a health coach? Have they had proven success helping people with your concern or condition?
- Coaching style: Are you looking for someone who is serious and will set strict goals and boundaries? Or are you looking for someone who offers nurturing, friendly support?
- Process: How long are you looking to work with someone and how frequently are you prepared to meet?
- Cost: How much are you able/willing to spend each month?
What Credentials Should My Health Coach Have?
It is essential that your health coach received training from an accredited health coaching program. The organizations offering accreditation rigorously review health coaching programs to ensure they are serving the clients’ best interests. View all of the Health Coach Institute’s accreditations, including the International Coaching Federation (ICF) and the Federation of Holistic Therapists (FHT).
How to Find a Health Coach
Once you know what you are looking for in your health coach, you can begin your search. There are many resources for finding health coaches both through trusted networks and online searches.
Search social media for popular hashtags like #healthcoach and #wellnesscoach. Check out the different specialties and personalities of the health coaches until you find one that fits your style. Make sure to read their client testimonials and check their health coaching certifications before signing on to anything long-term.
Many doctors, nutritionists and fitness professionals work with a network of trusted health coaches. Ask your practitioners if they work with anyone who would be a good fit for supporting your needs.
Search Specialties and Locations
Search health coach directories to find extensive lists of health coaches specializing in your area of interest. If you are looking for a health coach in your area, type “health coach near me” into your search bar. You can also use social media to discover health coaches whose specialty and philosophy speak to your needs.
Participate in Consultations
Many health coaches offer free or inexpensive consultations. Take these opportunities to see if you feel a connection to the health coach and their methods and philosophies. Being able to trust the person who will be working closely with you to adjust intimate daily habits is crucial.
A health coach is someone who works with you to create a life that makes you feel your best. There is no one health coach who is right for everyone, the important thing is finding someone who supports you in a way that helps you achieve your unique wellness objectives.
Become a Health Coach in 6 Months
Perhaps you’re interested in becoming a health coach yourself? Join HCI’s Become a Health Coach program to learn about health, wellness, diet and nutrition. For those looking to make a career shift, you can begin coaching in as little as six months. If you’re already a coach and want to advance your skills, check out HCI’s Coach Mastery program. Feel free to get in touch with one of our clarity coaches directly by calling 1-800-303-2399.