One of the Greatest Benefits of Being a Life Coach Is That You Have Control Over How Much You Make … But Just How Much Money Can You Actually Earn as a Life Coach?
Over the past 50 years, I’ve had the privilege of coaching and mentoring thousands of people — from CEOs, to heads of state, to single moms, to people just like you — empowering them to create lives they truly love living.
And one of the most common questions people who are interested in becoming life coaches ask is: Is it really possible to make a living as a life coach? What kind of life coach salary can I expect?
As a coach who’s built multiple seven-figure businesses, my answer is an unequivocal, “Absolutely, yes!”
With that said, exactly how much can you earn as a life coach? It depends.
But first, let’s get right to real numbers.
What is a Life Coach’s Salary: Average Income Data
Scouring through the data available about the average salaries of life coaches can be overwhelming to say the least. There are a lot of answers available online, and not a lot of ways to determine which information is accurate and reliable.
Here are the most up-to-date statistics as of January 2023:
The International Coaching Federation is considered a primary resource for data related to the coaching industry. The most recent ICF study, released in 2020, surveyed over 20,000 professional coaches across 160+ countries and territories.
According to the ICF Global Coaching Study, the average annual salary for a professional life coach in North America is $62,500.
Compare that to the average annual U.S. salary of:
- State Social Workers: $46,120 (source)
- Mental Health Counselors: $48,720 (source)
- Teachers: $56,658 (source)
- School Guidance Counselors: $54,302 (source)
- Executive Assistants: $47,352 (source)
Globally, life coach salaries average out at $47,100 per year (adjusted to the U.S. dollar).
The average annual revenue of the global life coaching industry as a whole was approximately 2.849 billion dollars, more than a 20% increase since 2016!
It’s important to note that individual salaries vary based on geographical region and each coach’s years of experience and topic of focus. However, ICF also indicates that the average annual incomes used in their recent study represented money earned by coaching alone, excluding any income earned through additional services or products.
How has the average life coach salary changed since the COVID-19 Pandemic?
The most recent ICF Global Coaching Study concluded just 4 weeks before the first reports of early COVID cases emerged. Since then, the world has changed in many ways.
If you’re wondering how those changes have impacted what’s possible for you as a new life coach or as someone considering life coaching as a career path, you aren’t alone.
In response, the International Coaching Federation conducted a second study in 2021 to assess the impact of the global pandemic on the coaching industry.
They discovered that over half of all coaches reported decreased income and decreased work hours in 2021, with business coaches reporting the most significant impact as many small businesses and large corporations closed their doors, at least temporarily.
Despite the reality of the impact of COVID-19 on the life coaching industry, I want to point out these significant findings from the same study:
- Nearly 30% of coaches surveyed reported that they experienced a positive impact on their businesses over the course of the pandemic, including higher income and more diverse offerings
- Over 65% of coaches surveyed reported confidence that the coaching industry would return to pre-pandemic levels or better in the years following the pandemic
- 52% of life coaches reported that Life Vision and Life Enhancement Coaching would be at the forefront of driving the life coaching industry’s recovery after the pandemic (we’d agree!)
- 65% of coaches who worked within organizations reported that the need for their services would (or had already) increased post-pandemic
Here’s What the Most Successful Coaches Know: Averages and data are important, but they aren’t limits.
At Brave Thinking Institute, we’ve certified thousands of life coaches, before, during, and after the COVID-19 pandemic. Our coaches continue to demonstrate that they are not limited to the averages and bare-bones data of the life coaching industry- and neither are you!
As a life coach, the success of your business and how much money you make each year is truly up to you.
With the right training and support, your life coaching business can generate a sustainable, generous income… and more.
When you have the resources you need to become a great life coach and run your business well, there are virtually no limits on how much money you can make and how.
This is why the pathway to becoming a certified life coach with Brave Thinking Institute includes the tools, training, and support you need to start and scale a successful life coaching business, no matter what type of coaching business you dream of building.
5 Ways Experienced Life Coaches Make Money
There are many approaches you can take to powerfully serve your client base. In fact, being a coach is one of the most flexible careers you can pursue, because you can create a business that works for YOU.
And don’t forget, the coaches who reported their income and businesses were least negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic were those who had more diverse services and offers!
Here are 5 different ways you can make money as a life coach:
1. One-on-One Sessions
Life coaching sessions are typically 60-90-minutes long and conducted with one client in person, over the phone, or online. Most people have an individual session once a week.
This method is useful for diving deep into your client’s life, mindset, and personal growth; however, it should NOT be the sole source of income for your coaching practice. If it is, your income and impact will always be limited by the number of clients you can work with in the number of hours you have. We do not recommend basing your business model on one-on-one sessions.
2. Group Coaching
The structure of group coaching sessions is similar to one-on-one coaching, but it allows you to serve more clients in the same amount of time, increasing both your impact and your income.
This method can feel less in-depth than individual coaching services, but it allows your clients to learn from each others’ questions and experiences. Your clients will also benefit from their connection with a group of passionate, like-minded people.
3. Live Events
If you like working with your clients in person, you enjoy speaking in front of crowds, and you want to help a lot of people learn a great deal in a short amount of time, live on-stage events could be a great fit for you.
While events don’t provide the ongoing support of weekly coaching, they do provide the most information and motivation in the shortest amount of time. Events are also a great way to up-sell clients into long-term coaching programs, as they build the ‘know, like, trust’ needed for a more significant investment.
4. Pre-recorded Resources & Online Courses
Another way to help many clients without burning out is to take advantage of a pre-recorded curriculum or online coaching course to deliver the bulk of your teaching. This approach allows you to serve more people, offer your knowledge and insight at a lower price per-person, and allow your clients to consume your material at their own pace.
Because this method lacks a system for ongoing support, consider pairing it with group coaching calls to ensure that your clients are never left wondering how to use your teaching or what to do next.
5. Combinations of the Above
Many coaches combine two or more of the above methods in order to give their clients the best possible results.
For example, you could host a live event to give your clients an inspiring, powerful start, and then offer a follow-up package that combines pre-recorded lessons with group or 1-on-1 coaching calls.
Or, you might choose to offer a group coaching program with an up-sell offer of private, one-on-one sessions for those who want to experience a deeper level of personal development.
No matter which approaches you choose for your own business, include these four of key elements for the best results:
- Reveal the universal, infallible principles of success that empower your clients to create the big, lasting changes they’re looking for
- Help your clients find clarity on what they truly desire, their purpose in life, and who they really are at their core
- Provide a practical, repeatable, step-by-step plan to achieve goals
- Offer ongoing support through challenges and obstacles that may come up
How you choose to structure your life coaching business is completely up to you. Creating the coaching business you’d most love is key to your unlimited success.
After all, you can’t help others create lives they truly love living if you don’t truly love your own!
Life Coaching Salary Success Stories
One of the greatest benefits of being a transformational life coach is that you can earn income doing truly meaningful, fulfilling work and changing people’s lives.
The amount of money you can earn while doing that work depends on the system you’re trained in and how you apply the training when it comes to your new business.
At Brave Thinking Institute, our life coaching certification program is developed and taught by faculty who have already achieved great success in the coaching industry. We teach our coaches not only how to become effective coaches, but also the ins and outs of running a successful coaching business.
Here are some examples of successful life coaches we’ve certified at Brave Thinking Institute (and how much they’ve earned)
Amanda Loveland was in her mid-20’s when she became certified as a life coach through Brave Thinking Institute.
Through our curriculum, Amanda learned how to find potential clients and launch her coaching business right away… and she earned $18,000 in her first 30 days as a life coach!
How? She was trained in how to overcome her fear of selling and enrolling clients and she had a proven system she could rely on to have those conversations.
Fast forward a few years, and Amanda’s coaching career only continues to grow. Her first month as a business owner and certified life coach was only a small preview of the success that was to come.
Or, consider Cynthia. She had just finished her DreamBuilder Coach training and boarded the plane home with her brand new life coach certification in-hand.
On the plane, she happened to sit between two people who asked why she seemed so happy. Cynthia shared that she was a newly certified DreamBuilder coach and used the techniques from her training to explain the dream building process.
In the one-hour flight between Los Angeles and Oakland, Cynthia enrolled her first two clients!
And it gets better… Once home, Cynthia set up her first workshop, which led to 40 people enrolling in her coaching program at $1,000 each!
Within the first four months of receiving her DreamBuilder certification, Cynthia earned over $64,000!
Her success is a direct result of the action she took and how she used her Brave Thinking Institute training.
Want to read more stories of the successful life coaches from our programs? Click here.
So, How Much Do Life Coaches Make? It Depends…
Is your life coaching business equipped with an economic engine proven to drive real success?
Have you learned what it takes to be a highly effective coach and build a sustainable coaching business?
Do you know the best way to find, connect with, and enroll new clients into the services your coaching practice offers?
Are you willing to take action in the direction of your dream and commit to building the life coaching business and abundant income you would love?
If so, your earning potential as a life coach is unlimited!
Would you love to build a 6- to 7-figure coaching business?
Curious about how you can become a life coach that earns a full time salary doing work you truly love?
If you dream of helping others take the journey to manifest their greatest dreams, I’d love to give you a free copy of my eBook, How to Get 10 New Clients in Less Than 90 Days.
In this free eBook, you’ll discover how to promote your coaching business like a pro and launch your business to make a profound and lasting difference in the lives of others – all while allowing you to earn an abundant income!
I created this eBook to support you no matter where you are on your journey, whether you want to become a life coach or you’re already a coach dreaming of more success.
Download your free copy here.