Written by: Katie Navarra Bradley, ACC 

Are you considering coaching but unsure if you are ready for coaching? Prepare for coaching with this guide which offers an assessment to help determine your readiness level. Explore the steps to prepare for a rewarding experience with coaching 

Do you feel stuck in your personal or professional life? Do you find yourself facing the same challenges repeatedly? Or maybe you’re considering seeking guidance but are unsure if coaching is the right step for you.  

If you’re wondering, “Am I ready for coaching?” you’re not alone. Many people wonder if coaching is the right fit. With this guide, you can learn the value of coaching, the signs you’re ready for coaching, as well as tips for finding a coach. 

Why You Should Consider Coaching 

Everyone has different reasons for working with a coach. Often, it’s accountability for achieving growth or goals, building leadership skills, or finding guidance for juggling multiple demands. According to the 2022 ICF Global Consumer Awareness Study, the most commonly cited benefits of coaching include: 

  • Improving communication skills. 
  • Developing a healthy work-life balance. 
  • Raising self-esteem/self-confidence. 
  • Advancing in their career.
  • Reducing stress and managing burnout. 

5 Signs You Are Ready for Coaching 

Coaching is an investment. It requires a financial commitment, a willingness to devote time to regular meetings with a coach, and the desire to take action. Here are five signs to help you decide if you’re ready for coaching. 

You Feel Stuck and Are Ready for a Change 

Do you feel like you aren’t making progress no matter what you do? That no matter how hard you try, things don’t seem to change. A coach can help you clarify your goals, explore new perspectives, and dig into what might hold you back. When you want to make a meaningful change, whether in your career or through personal growth, coaching can provide the structure and support needed to turn your ambitions into reality.  

You Are Open to Feedback 

Coaching is a collaborative process where your active participation is essential. You must do the work and be willing to be honest when talking about your challenges, behaviors, and beliefs, even when it feels uncomfortable. You must also be open to hearing feedback. Considering different perspectives does not mean you must implement every idea, but by listening with an open mind, you can choose a well-informed path forward. 

You Are Motivated to Take Action  

Nothing changes if nothing changes. Coaching is most successful when you are motivated to follow through and do things differently. If you’re excited about what’s possible through change and are committed to digging in and doing the work it takes to move from where you are to where you want to end up, then now is the time to hire a coach. 

You Are Looking for Accountability 

You know that things need to change. You know there are habits you need to develop, and you’ve read about and heard about the “things” you need to do. But having self-discipline and making things happen is hard!  

Don’t worry — you’re not the only one facing this struggle. A coach can provide accountability and help you learn how to leverage your strengths and recognize your weaknesses to make progress and keep moving forward. 

You Are Looking to Improve Your Relationships  

Studies have shown that good relationships developed through positivity and kindness equate to success in the workplace. Not only are leaders rated more highly when they put people first, but their teams perform better too. Working with a coach can help you gain a deeper understanding of people’s communication styles and motivations so that you can build trust and collaboration. 

Signs You Are Not Ready for Coaching 

If you aren’t committed to coaching, you could waste time and money. Sometimes, you may not be ready for coaching because of circumstances beyond your control, like a significant project at work or a family situation that requires your time and energy. That is OK; plan to revisit the idea of working with a coach when things change.  

Other times, there may be additional reasons you’re not prepared for coaching. Consider if any of these scenarios sound familiar to help you decide if you’re ready to start now and what you can do to prepare yourself to be coached. 

You Want Someone to Give You the Answers 

Coaches help you reframe challenges and consider new perspectives to move you from where you are to where you want to be. They can provide resources for you to ponder further, but they don’t give you the answers or do the work for you. To be ready for coaching, you should be prepared to take action where needed. 

You Blame Other People or Circumstances 

Life can be hard and sometimes unfair. Your willingness to look inward and accept responsibility for what you can and can’t change will determine how successful the coaching process can be for you. If you know this is your default, be sure to mention it when you set up a coaching agreement. Your coach can tell you if this is a perspective they can help you reframe or if it’s something you need to work on before entering into a coaching partnership.  

You Never Have Time 

You’re not alone if you feel like your schedule doesn’t have room for one more meeting. If you frequently cancel and reschedule commitments, you will need to think about how to make coaching fit in your life. When something is truly important to you, you will find time to make it happen. It’s about understanding your priorities and making time for them. If you feel stuck because you have too many responsibilities, think about what you can cut or rearrange for a short time, as a coach can help you identify things that shouldn’t be a priority and free up time for what matters most. 

You’re Not Ready to Make the Financial Commitment 

Coaching is an investment, and if you’re uncomfortable with the cost, now may not be the time to hire a coach. Take time to assess your finances and your budget. You might have valid reasons to wait and save up before signing on with a coach. Depending on your coaching goals, your employer may have a program that covers the fees. So, if you want to start immediately but don’t have the funds, ask about professional development opportunities at work. 

Find the Right Coach for You 

Once you decide you are ready for coaching, it’s time to find the right coach for you. There are several factors to consider. In fact, one of the most exciting things about coaching is the wide variety of coaching niches. You can find a coaching experience that matches your learning style and your goals. International Coaching Federation (ICF) credentialed coaches specialize in various areas, including leadership, health and wellness, life, relationship, and career coaching.  

Once you determine that you’re ready for coaching, use the ICF Credentialed Coach Finder to find the coach who is the perfect fit to support you in achieving your goals. 

More About the Author

Katie Navarra Bradley, ACC,

Katie is a certified leadership coach passionate about horses. She loves to bring her clients into the arena with her horses. Unscripted horse behavior provides instantaneous, non-judgmental feedback that gives leaders a fresh perspective on how they can strengthen their leadership skills for greater outcomes. Fresh out of college, she was hired to build and lead a team to turn around an underperforming distribution warehouse in the construction industry while simultaneously establishing her communication expertise as a leader. A journalist, ghostwriter, and content marketing writer, Katie is on a mission to help high-performing individuals and teams elevate their communication skills by sharing the transformational experience of equine-assisted coaching. Learn more.