The United States of America has many things to boast of,
like the many inventors who brought flight, the library, and McDonald's to us and other countries open to such marvelous things. The United States of America also has enchanting urban and rural landscapes that travelers can "oooh" and "aaah" over, even in the same state (I'm thinking California, Texas, and New York, but there are more).
But the main thing the United States of America can boast of is the startling fact that we have the most life coaches out of all of the countries in the world.
But first, what is a life coach?A life coach helps clients focus on a particular aspect of life (health, fitness, personal goals, business goals, relationships) and improves it by offering them accountability. This accountability ranges from phone call check-ins to at-home visits. A life coach goes by many different names. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics counts these life coaches under the titles rehabilitation counselor, educational, guidance, and school counselors, and personal care and service workers. The International Coach Federation (the ICF) is the world's largest organization that trains coaches. The ICF says that the annual salary for a coach ranges from $27,100 to $73.100. Some specialty coaches (like this British dude who used to live in a squat but is now super rich) make way more than that a year. The history of life coaching is credited to Thomas Leonard, an American financial planner. Now, in 2019, life coaching (or accountability coaching) is a new and fast-growing job in our nation.
"It is estimated by The International Coach Federation that there are currently 53,300 coaches, up from 47,500 part-time and full-time coaches worldwide in 2011. About 92% of these are active. Of these, 33% operate in the United States - a total of 17,500 coaches. One would think that the U.S. market is saturated, but demand appears to still be growing.
- John LaRusa on the Market Research Blog (Feb. 2018)
Now, on to my opinion about this all. Why does America have so many life coaches? And why do we want more?
The first answer is usually the simplest solution.
We have a lot of life coaches because people don't know how to hold themselves accountable. You see, life coaches don't tell you (like a magic eight ball might) what is good or bad for you to do with your life choices.
Life coaches keep YOUR goals and YOUR ideas accountable while identifying your weaknesses that could hinder you from achieving your goals. Having a desire for accountability in America means one thing - that we have lost the ability to hold ourselves accountable.
That means we have lost the character and willpower it takes for ourselves to be accountable on our own. I find it a little problematic so many people in the U.S. desire this job.
The second answer to "Why does America have so many life coaches?" is because people want life coaches.
People want to have someone to hold them accountable, so there will be a demand for this job as long as the people want it. Supplying a demand the American populace has isn't a problem, it's just smart business.
The third answer to this question is really simple.
Since America is where this profession was born, I think it's only natural that only 30 or so years after it began that our country has the most life coaches in the world.
In general, I think Americans have developed a growing need to hear as many professional opinions as possible.
In this way, it is wise to seek wisdom from older and more experienced people about huge life decisions or business plans (Proverbs 15:22).
I find it a little problematic (only a little) that we can't seem to quiet ourselves down and conduct our own research into bettering our lives and implementing the changes necessary to accomplish our realistic goals.
Maybe that's the real kicker. We don't know how to set realistic and attainable goals to get to our dream job, financial plan, relationship happiness level, weight, etc.
A lot of us are procrastinators who don't know how to meet a deadline that hasn't been set. For example, I want to be a better cook, but with no one (including me) making sure I become a better cook, I haven't practiced at becoming a better cook yet.
Well, at any rate, I wrote this article so you could learn about this profession more, think a little critically about it with me, and develop your own opinion about why the U.S. has so many life coaches.