The Myth of Being Perfect as a Life Coach

May 21, 2014


I recently asked Beautiful You Coaching Academy subscribers…’How are you and what would you like me to write about?’

(The responses blew me away and it’s something I highly recommend you try sometime.  The people who subscribe to receive your updates are ‘real’ people.  They’re not just a number on your ‘list’ – they’re part of your business team.  Reach out to them and see what goodness unfolds.)

One of the requests I received was to write about concerns someone had that to be a great life coach and help others with their life, you must have an amazingly great, (real meaning – perfect), life yourself.  You must be exemplary.  Incredible.  Beyond reproach.  Beyond outstanding.

Well I should firstly be honest and say that I do believe that the best life coaches are indeed great people.  They have a passion for life, people, experiences and adventure.  They’re readers, developers, communicators and love learning.  They’re more often than not the type of person you want to be around because they lift you up and believe it’s more than ok for you to just be you.  Whomever that might be.

But being a great person – even a person who is passionate, adventurous, believing and uplifting – does not mean you are perfect.  Um.  No.

Woman Cafe Laptop

Because being ‘perfect’ the way I see it means that you have no flaws, no failures, no bumps, no resistance, no ego based thoughts or actions, and of course nothing ever goes wrong in your life.  Part of the dictionary definition of perfect is to be ‘free from faults or defects.’  And I’m yet to meet anybody that is free of those, including any coach.  And besides that, why would you want to be?  It’s within our so called faults and defects that we can learn most about our true selves.  Such as…

How we cope when things don’t go our way or even spectacularly flop.

What we do when we get dumped, left out, or totally forgotten.

Our reaction when we believe someone has let us down or taken us for granted.

The actions we take when we are sick, grumpy, fed up and even wretched to be around.

There is so, so much goodness in these experiences which, let’s face it, we all have or will have, at some point in time in a well led and fed life.  Finding out our level of innate strength, resilience, courage and fortitude is so often found at times where we are feeling pushed down, out of sorts, behind, dark, or simply not our best selves.  And in doing so we learn to appreciate and be gratitude filled for those moments where there is light, joy, love and achievement.

The best life coaches are not perfect.  They’re the exact opposite.  They’re flawed, grappling, reaching, and searching.  In being their authentic selves they know there will be times when they need to take a big old dose of their own coaching wisdom, reach out for help or inspiration, or hit that yoga mat, meditation chair, or journal with tears flowing and a vulnerable heart to ask ‘What is next?’ – ‘Where am I?’ – ‘How do I feel and move through this?’ or my favourite question of all time ‘How can I love myself more right now?’

If you’re dreaming of becoming a life coach, or you already are one and thinking you need to be doing more to be perfect and beyond flawed with a life and presence where you’ve totally got it ‘all together’ all the time – please take it from someone who has been coaching for a long time now – and has had the privilege of working with hundreds of clients.  You don’t.

To be a wonderful life coach simply means that at the core of your heart you strive to live every day as your authentic self – with all your flaws, failings, messy tears and fears thrown in.  The world (and your next client) does not need another carbon copy of what you think it is to be a perfect person.

It needs you.


  1. Steph

    This is EXACTLY what I needed to read right now. Thank you xo

    • Julie

      I’m so glad Steph – that’s great. Let’s all be imperfect together!

    • Julie

      You’re so welcome Claire. I think it’s a reminder we can all do with from time to time.

  2. Lee

    Oh, absolutely!
    Imperfect and learning. Every. Single. Day.
    Thanks Julie. 🙂

    • Julie

      “Imperfect and learning.” I love that Lee.

  3. Amy / Peace of Advice

    This is a brilliant and comforting message for so many Julie – not even just life coaches! Allowing our imperfection to sit in the room with us, but still holding onto our belief in what we offering in service to the world: what an important muscle to exercise! 🙂 Thanks so much xoxoxo

    • Julie

      Thank you Amy! And I so agree an important message for all of us – not just coaches.

  4. Elizabeth Rose

    Beautiful post Julie, thank you! As coaches, if we’re all too ‘perfect’, how can we truly relate to people who come to us for guidance?
    Love what you’ve written…a great reminder for us all 🙂

    • Julie

      How can we truly relate indeed! Thanks Elizabeth – I agree entirely.

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