Running your own health coaching business can get very complicated, especially when you don't have a clear process outlined. If planning your sessions with new clients is taking up most of your time, you might not be doing it the right way.
Of course you want to provide a personalized and unique experience through a signature program for each of your health coaching clients, after all, that's why they chose your services over someone else's, right?
However, this doesn't mean you have to sit down for hours to create your coaching programs from scratch. You can save a ton of time by creating a health coaching program template and modifying it as necessary on an individual basis.
This will not only make your life easier and help you stay organized. In the long run, it can also help you scale your business by making your onboarding process a breeze and maybe even allowing you to structure group coaching sessions.
Let's go over the essential elements you should include in order to create an efficient and comprehensive coaching program template.
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What should a health coaching program include?
Not all clients are the same, and as an independent health coach, your goal is to create tailored programs that target their unique challenges and exceed their expectations.
However, regardless of the coaching services you provide, and even if you have a specific niche (such as business-building, balancing hormones, or fitness coach), you can incorporate the following elements into your coaching program template.
Initial Assessment Outline
By the time you start structuring a tailored health coaching program, you should have already had an intake session or at least have a client health coach intake form filled out (which is also a great way to identify your ideal client if you're a new coach). You must learn about a client's background and the needs they hope to have met through your coaching services. if you haven't, use our coaching intake session checklist to make one.
Once you have gathered this information through powerful coaching questions, include a brief outline of it in your coaching program, going over your client's current situation, frustrations, high-level objectives and expectations.
SMART Goal Setting
This is the crucial point for realizing significant behavior change. You have an understanding of what would likely be individually attainable and motivationally relevant for your clients through their sharing of their ultimate visions, deeply personal and motivating worries, and honest willingness.
SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Time-Specific) goal setting will help transition your client from a general purpose such as to lose weight, exercise more or eat healthier, to a doable step toward their vision that calls for new effort and adaptation.
For example, if your client's ultimate goal is losing weight, you can start with a more immediate objective of dropping 3 inches at the waist, which is both Specific and Measurable. Then, based on what you think is realistic for your client, you'd attach a Time-Specific context to the goal. These SMART goals are a core component of health coaching programs as they will determine how your sessions are structured. Which leads us to the next vital component.
Now that you've established your client's challenges and goals to achieve during the coaching program, it's time to lay out the main topics and key learning points that will be covered during the sessions. Now, you don't have to develop a new session structure every time you create a program for a new client.
You probably already have identified the issues that most people struggle with, so you can put together a set of topics to cover (along with content to deliver for each of them).
These topics may include exercise strategies, how to boost energy, meal planning, understanding cravings, food labels, stress management, mindful eating, etc. So for instance, if one of your client's challenges is eating too much, you'd want to cover the topics of meal planning, and mindful eating which you have already prepared material for. Consider the length of the coaching program when determining the amount of topics you should cover as you don't want to overwhelm your clients.
A good rule of thumb is to have your client focus on a maximum of two topics at a time. Additionally, ensure your client understands these session topics are not set in stone, and you will remain flexible if they'd like to change or add topics they're struggling with. Remember your clients may have similar issues, but they will have different priorities and timing.
Resources & Delivery
Next, it's time to list all the resources you might utilize for your health coaching program. You can include them in your template and simply select the ones that best meet each of your client's needs.
This list may consist of useful materials, including your own proprietary resources such as worksheets, checklists, exercises for group coaching, roleplay scenarios, templates, journals, and other reading material.
If you include resources you didn't create yourself, remember to give credit to the other coaches or authors. You'll also want to specify how the sessions will be delivered. Whether this will be a 1-on-1 program, if there will be virtual sessions via video calls, or if there will be in-person meetings (and where these will be held).
Weekly Session Plan
When you have decided on your objectives and gathered your strategies and materials, you are prepared to lay out the detailed steps necessary for your client's success. You can start by defining milestones you want to reach during each session, such as establishing a daily 10-minute meditation practice, increasing protein intake from two to five servings, and include a morning walk or yoga session each day.
These objectives of course will extend throughout various sessions within the same program, so you would outline the unique mix of topics, resources and delivery tactics each weekly session will require. This will provide your client with a clear path to follow, increase your client's confidence through small wins and encourage progress by setting specific milestones.
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