Let’s start by looking a little deeper at the skills and qualities that us at our Coach Training School recognise as being important in making a great life coach.
The first set of qualities is well-described by the VIA Institute that put together a list of 24 different character strengths that people utilize to be happy and fulfilled in their daily lives, even when times are tough. The strengths are divided into six groups, namely Wisdom, Courage, Humanity, Justice, Temperance and Transcendence. At our Coach Training School, we talk about these a lot.
Don’t worry if you start to feel a little overwhelmed and wonder if you’ll ever possess what it takes to be a great life coach. Today, we’re going to look at the Wisdom characters!
- Creativity – you can think out-of-the-box and uniquely conceptualize something useful. For instance, if an approach with a client is not working, a coach may want to come up with a creative solution.
- Curiosity – you look for new situations where you can gain new knowledge and experience. For a coach, genuine interest (curiosity) is the lifeblood of continuous learning and inspiration to understand and help a client.
- Judgment – you weigh all aspects objectively when making a decision, even when they clash with your personal feelings and opinions. A coach should always view a client without prejudice to do what is best for them and not you.
- Love of learning – you are aspiring to acquire new knowledge, deepen existing insights, and develop and improve skills. Coaching is a process based on scientific evidence that is evolving all the time. Coaches have a professional responsibility to improve their expertise continuously.
- Perspective – you advise others by considering different angles in the context of your knowledge and experience. Having a broad perspective helps a coach to clarify the big picture for clients.
Developing a Coaching Mindset
Many of the skills required to develop a coaching mindset are already implicit in the character strengths mentioned. However, it is useful to pinpoint five skills from a behavioral angle that are critical to guide and stimulate clients to change. These are: Listening Skills, Being Ethical, Being Empathetic, Being Motivating and Being Inspirational.
At our Coach Training School, we recommend taking the VIA Character Strength Survey. The VIA survey only takes 20-30 minutes to complete and has been used by millions of people to date to discover the strengths that they can utilize as a foundation to grow.
Have a look at your ranking of character strengths. Do you see any surprises? Are there any lower-ranked strengths that you may need to achieve your goals? These are the ones you will focus on in your personal development journey.