What Is Life Coaching? How Men Can Benefit From A Coach

Silhouette of man standing with arms triumphantly raised

The easiest way to explain what life coaching is to think of sports coaching.

Picture this – an athlete just won the gold medal at the Olympics. The spotlight is on, the cameras and the mic are on. The TV reporter asks:

“Is there anyone who played a big part in your journey to win this medal?”  

“My family, my partner, my coach!” 

Does it sound familiar? It does! 

That’s because thousands of high performing athletes would not be who they are without the support from a coach. 

Life coaching is very similar. It is all about excelling and achieving greatness. 

Life coaches are trained to help people reach their full potential by identifying their goals, working on their mindset and holding them accountable along the way. A life coach, similarly to a sports coach, encourages and works on helping you improve your self confidence

Why is it important to have life coaching specific for men?

Several factors support men’s life coaching as a specialised area of practice. 

These include cultural and social norms, our upbringing and the role models we grew up with and look up to. 

Put simply, our society often teaches men not to seek help while expecting men to achieve high levels of success in their relationships, careers, financial status and more. It is no wonder that men are at higher risk of suicide and social isolation. 

Can you imagine a great athlete achieving great success without a coach? Can you imagine handling the pressure on their own without help and mentoring? 

We probably can’t and we shouldn’t expect this from men in other areas of their life.  

A lot of men give up on their big ambitions as they feel overwhelmed and under pressure. With the right guidance and support – instead of doing it all on your own, you don’t have to give up on your big dreams.  

One of the most rewarding things about men’s life coaching is to reassure clients that they can and they should dream big! 

Is life coaching for men focused on their careers?

Not necessarily.

As the name suggests, life coaching is about… life – any aspects of life that are important to you to reach your full potential!

Career is an important part of life and coaches can help you with setting career goals, developing an action plan towards these goals as well as working on your mindset and confidence. 

Nevertheless, there is a lot more a life coach can do for you. Other typical areas of life coaching include – but are not limited to:

  • Achieving fitness and physical health goals
  • Improving communication and skills
  • Articulating feelings and managing emotions
  • Improving relationships with others and with yourself
  • Managing big changes in your life (i.e. starting a new business)
Two older men jogging to improve fitness

How does life coaching work? 

Life coaches work closely with their clients and cater to their needs and aspirations. While the service is highly individualised, it is also a well-structured process that will typically cover some key steps:

  • Set goals and their client’s life’s vision 
  • Identify barriers and enablers to achieve these goals and vision 
  • Develop an action plan with clear steps towards greatness

Life coaches follow their clients’ journey every step of the way. They are there to provide clarity, guidance and encouragement. 

Who should be hiring a life coach?

Think about your big ambitious dreams like the gold medal! Anyone who is highly ambitious – and wants to win the ‘gold medal of life’ – should consider hiring a coach. 

While your ambition involves career growth, relationship fulfilment, fitness targets and/or a combination of these and others, life coaches’ clients typically understand they have a journey ahead of them and the path is made easier by working with a trained professional. 

When is life coaching not appropriate for you?

Life coaches are not therapists, psychologists or psychiatrists. If you have a mental health issue such as depression, severe anxiety or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), you should talk to your doctor and get a referral to see a mental health professional. 

Nevertheless, life coaches can work simultaneously with mental health professionals to help their clients. It is not either/or as many clients benefit from working closely with both. 

Final thoughts on life coaching for men

In life, it is perfectly okay to dream big! What is not okay is to feel overwhelmed by our dreams and give up on them or, even worse, give up on ourselves. Cultural factors often lead men to believe that they need to do it all by themselves. That’s a big mistake. 

Men around the world can benefit from having a life coach to walk them through their journey towards greatness.