How to Recognize and Encourage Success as a Life Coach

How to Recognize and Encourage Success in Life Coaching

According to the dictionary, it is the apparent line where earth meets the sky. If you have ever been in an airplane where you watched the horizon, it always seems as though you continued to fly toward the horizon, but you never actually reached it. It continues to move ahead of you.

If we do not stop to look at our accomplishments, we could become discouraged because our horizon is just such an imaginary goal that is constantly moving out ahead of us. As we begin to accumulate things such as knowledge, wealth, and friends, we can accept this as our new normal state.

That is why it is important to stop from time to time and look back at where we started on our journey. For example, for a person who has difficulty making phone calls, cold calling is the biggest problem in the world. After learning techniques to deal with it, suddenly that person is making 40 to 50 calls a day, in contrast to earlier times when even making one call was enough to make the individual break out into a cold sweat.

Before learning to look back on those earlier days, the person may believe that personal development has been unsuccessful.

Consider the story of a man who was left $1 million by his brother. If you were to ask most people, getting such a legacy would be fantastic. This individual, however, was angry. Why? Because his brother left hundreds of millions of dollars to charity. This man had nothing when he first got his legacy; but because he was focused only on what he did not get, he failed to acknowledge what he got.

Anytime you reach a goal and recognize your starting point, you will get a feeling of success, regardless of how long it took to get there or how easy it seemed at the end. The only time you feel dissatisfaction is when you compare yourself unfavorably to others who have more than you do. Remember only to compare yourself to yourself.

As you progress in your career as a life coach, you will realize that it is perfectly normal for humans to focus on what is not working. Some kind of an alert is sent to our brain that tells us that we have something we have to fix. There is nothing wrong with this, as the road to change is identifying what needs to be fixed.

However, we must periodically stop to notice the results of our efforts. Measuring ourselves against an idealized future sets us up for endless suffering because we will never reach that horizon.

Always remember to gauge your progress by stopping periodically, evaluating where you are now in your life, and then looking back to see where you were when you started. In this way, you will begin to recognize success.


One sign of a successful person is the quality of his or her relationships. We do not live in isolation from one another. We need other people to help us through life. We depend on other people to provide basic services that we use on a daily basis. We do pride ourselves on our individuality, but we must recognize that we are in this world with a lot of other people. Learning to be an expert on relationships is another of your important jobs as a life coach.

For your own life and to assist your clients, you must understand the basic principles and benefits of relationships and how to create or develop them. Quite frankly, you need to be an expert on people and how to create and develop relationships with all types of people.

As you progress on your journey to being a life coach, you will see that people are very much the same. We all need to feel important, and we all prefer to avoid pain. We would like to be recognized when we do something well. We like to be comforted when we are sad.

A mother likes to tell the story of her early days of marriage with her husband. She was feeling as though she weren't being a good wife and she wanted some direction on how to improve. She asked her husband what he would change about her to make her a better wife. Her husband thought about it for a while and then replied, "I don't think that there is a single thing about you that I would change. I love you the way you are." This story was so powerful that it is still being repeated even 50 years after the event. The real truth is that there likely a dozen things the man could have said to his wife, ways he felt she could improve, but at the moment, she needed to feel valued and appreciated. That husband made his wife feel important, a feeling that lasted over 50 years. That's a lesson to remember.

Friends and Acquaintances

There is a distinct difference between developing a relationship with a friend and developing a relationship with someone we know. However, basic principles of respect and honesty still prevail. Friendships are very important. Psychiatrists put them third on our list of priorities, behind only the primary relationship you have with your partner and the secondary relationship of a parent and child.

We need friendships. These are the people with whom we feel completely accepted. We spend time with them and enjoy the activities we do together. Friends are those with whom we can share our thoughts, hopes, and dreams.

Friendships will flourish if you tend them. If you ignore them, they will wither away. Here are some of the very basic rules of friendship:

o Be genuine. Do not be one person in one situation and then another person in another situation. Be authentic. Be yourself. Most people fear someone who is two-faced.

o Kind words and deeds build relationships. Being unkind will kill a friendship.

o When you make a promise, keep it. Be a person whose word is solid.

o Try to meet expectations you have of yourself and, to a certain extent, expectations others have of you as well.

o If you make a mistake, admit it! Do not lie. Do not blame someone or something else. Admit your fault, and then apologize. Pride ruins more friendships than it saves.

o Understand that people are unique. You cannot treat everyone exactly the same way. Treat them the way they expect to be treated.

Interested in learning more? Why not take an online Life Coaching course?

o You attract more flies with honey than vinegar. The same goes for friendships and relationships.

In short, in order to develop and cultivate relationships, you have to like people. When you take the time to understand what motivates them, you will become a very influential person.

Making People Feel Important

Have you ever watched someone who seems to just have a knack for handling people? You know this kind of person, the one who walks into a store or office and finds it busy, with grumpy clerks behind the counter that do not want to be there and really do not want to help anyone.

This person has a totally different experience from everyone else. She or he walks up to the counter and before too long, the clerk is smiling, laughing, and telling the person to have a nice day. The clerk even smiles at the next customer who approaches the counter.

What happened?

Did this person have some kind of magic potion?

Perhaps so.

That magic potion is what a people person has. People like that have learned the art of getting people to do what they want by making someone feel important rather than fearful. They have learned the art of asking a question and then really listening to the answer. They do not interrupt; they empathize and communicate that they understand what is being said. They treat other human beings with respect, as if they have some kind of value.

Wouldn't this world be amazing if everyone treated the rest of the world that way?

One of the very best books on this topic is Dale Carnegie's How To Win Friends and Influence People. This book has been in print for more than 60 years and the principles apply today just as they did 60 years ago. One of the simplest and most powerful ways to build relationships is to understand that people have a desire to feel important. Abraham Lincoln once said: "Everybody likes a compliment. The deepest principle in human nature is the craving to be appreciated."

The desire to feel important is a defining characteristic that sets man apart from all other animals.

You do not believe this? Consider those who build homes too large for their needs, or those who talk constantly about their brilliant children. The desire to feel important is the motivating force behind working hard and getting a good education, or joining a gang and engaging in criminal behavior.

The motivational force behind both is the desire to feel important.

People will go to great lengths to be made to feel important. Once you know and understand this principle, you will learn how to get people to work cooperatively with you on a great many difficult, even unappealing, projects. By making them feel important, they will perform amazing tasks!

The next time you face someone who is having a bad day, see if you can possibly get that person to smile. Stop thinking about your own problems and concerns. Ask how the person's day is going. Then listen, really listen, to the response. Do not plan what you are going to say next. Sometimes all anyone wants is to just be heard.

Once you start putting your people skills into effect, you will be absolutely astounded at how people react.

Those who once were unwilling to talk to you suddenly usher you into their office and bend over backward to help you get what you need. Most of the time, it is merely a matter of how you treat them.


Your character is who you are today and who you are becoming. It is about identifying what is not working in your life and working to fix that. We have taken a really in-depth journey into this exploration.

Here are a few things to remember:

o Count your blessings.

o Tell the truth.

o Use common sense.

o Do not make things worse than they really are; that is a pitiful excuse to not try to improve.

o Be honest. Be authentic.

o No one can get better until seeing and admitting that something is wrong. Now make it better. Take action.

o You have to honor your beliefs. Do not settle. Go for more energy, focus, and spirit.

o What you will get is a change of your patterns.

o You need to learn what really needs to be fixed.

o When you do this, you are on the road to becoming who you want to be.

Seeking the Company of Successful People

Look around you. The five to six people closest to you do more to define your future than just about anything. They will guide the direction of your life.

People who know what they want eventually will find it. You do not usually just bump into what you are looking for if you do not know what it is. People with vision and purpose recognize what is not working in their lives; there is a gap between where they are and where they want to be. Because they identified the gap, they work to close it.

If you hang around people who do not share your goals, it becomes harder and harder to continue to do the work that sometimes is necessary to reach your goals. If you want to work on anything, it helps to be around other people who have a similar goal. Those who have no such aspirations will challenge you, and without meaning to, they can make you begin to doubt yourself.

Swim with the fish you want to be.

Remember, the focus is on who you have become, not what you have done or accumulated.

Your entire journey into your future is to become a better person. You will accomplish things and may very well accumulate a great amount of wealth; but because you have worked on who you are, you will begin to actually find happiness. That is what this life is about.

There is a better you inside. Let us find it!