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So, how do you go about finding a terrific life coach who is just right for you? When shopping for a coach, there are three very important things to look for.

Certification - Not all people who call themselves a life coach are certified by an accredited professional school, nor are they even true coaches for that matter. In fact, most self-proclaimed life coaches are neither. Certification is very important, because life coaching is a profession that requires very specific skills, conduct standards, and a foundation of training which is only taught in qualified schools. Regardless of what some may try to tell you, life experience and other types of experience or training are simply not enough. Would you hire a psychologist who didn't have formal training?

I am certified by one of the most highly acclaimed coach training institutions in the United States, iPEC Coaching. iPEC was one of the first 12 schools worldwide to have their coach training fully accredited by the International Coach Federation (ICF). The ICF is the organization that sets and monitors the international standards for professional coaching ethics, training and practices.

iPEC certification requirements include over 300 hours of rigorous training, including approximately 100 hours of live training. Face-to-face live training is essential to truly grasp and practice the fundamentals of in-depth, breakthrough coaching. Some schools train strictly by telephone and most others offer only a minimal amount of actual coaching practice. iPEC uses telephone training and coach mentoring in addition to the live training, and most importantly, iPEC requires extensive firsthand coaching experience from each potential coach before they can even apply for certification.

A Good Personal Fit - An effective coach for one person may not be a good match for another. Personal chemistry is important. To find a good match, it's best to speak directly with your potential coach and ask for a sample session. You'll want to be sure you feel comfortable enough with your coach to develop the deep trust so necessary for breakthrough coaching.

I am always willing to spend time speaking with you on the phone, answering your questions and addressing your concerns. I also offer you a complimentary coaching session so you can see for yourself what coaching is all about and to find out if I am a good match for you.

References - An effective coach will have happy and satisfied clients who, after contracting the services of the coach, have made significant changes in their lives. Note: when asking for references make sure the people have actually been coached by the coach. Some people give references of friends or people that they have worked with in some unrelated manner. I have references available upon request. In addition, I can provide testimonials from those who have worked with me.

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