How I became a health coach

In my 20s and 30s I completed two university degrees and in 1995 joined the corporate world of Public Relations.

I had a series of progressively increasing roles over the next 10 years and ended up in a management position, overseeing a corporate communications team for a government agency. I had a good salary, great benefits and had reached a mid-level management. Things were going pretty good.

During this time, my personal life fell into place when I met my life partner. We shared passions for yoga, spirituality and our health. We travelled, bought a house by the ocean and eventually got married.

While things were going great personally, I was struggling with some health issues that had developed in my 20s and was feeling uneasy about my work. I was successfully rising up the corporate ladder, so why was I wondering if this was really what I wanted to do for the rest of my life?

I'd come home from work in tears, exhausted and stressed out. My digestive issues were getting worse, I was gaining weight, and had no energy. I'd sit on the couch watching mindless TV. It was taking a toll on my health and my relationship.

I did a lot of soul searching trying to figure out what I wanted to do with the rest of my life. I read books, attended workshops, did a peer leadership program and went on retreats about finding your calling and coming into your own.

Through a colleague I met at one of the trainings, I learned about IIN. I checked out the school's website and completely resonated with what I read. Hallelujah, this was it!

I knew right away I had to enrol in IIN's Health Coach Training Program. I wasn't sure if I'd ever become a health coach, but I knew this was the right next step for me.

As the program start date drew nearer, I made plans to leave my job. In December 2011, I packed up my desk and haven't looked back. I immersed myself in the program and learned everything I could about holistic health.

I launched my health coaching practice in July of 2012, graduated in December 2012. Since then I've gone on to do other health coaching trainings and in 2021 became board certified through the NBHWC.

For the last eight years I've been working with IIN facilitating coaching circles with students attending IIN and am also on the faculty of their Coaching Intensive Practicum.

IIN has been training Health Coaches for 30 years. In celebration of their 30th anniversary and the evolution of the health coaching profession, they recently launched and evolved and reimagined Health Coach Training Program, complete with new teachers; new curriculum content; and a brand-new, innovative learning experience to better support your personal and professional goals.

>> You can read more about the new program and curriculum here

While IIN wasn't the only stop on my education and training journey, I do believe it is the most well-rounded and valuable introduction to the field. It's what enabled me to launch my career as a health coach and do this work over the last 10 years and I've so grateful.

If you're considering a career in health and well-being the next course starts on July 18th.

>> Check out the program overview here.  If decide to enrol and mention my name you'll receive an additional discount on top of the 30th anniversary pricing.

The world needs us now more than ever. Don't wait, enrol in IIN today!

Call IIN's dedicated Ambassador VIP line: (844) 780-3300 in the United States or +1 (212) 730-5433 internationally. They'll be happy to address any questions or concerns.


  1. Kayleena on October 24, 2022 at 4:12 am

    Thank you for posting your story. I have wanted to be a health coach for a long time but have been terrified. Mostly because I have no idea what I would cover in a session or what to ask exactly. I have a bachelor’s in health and wellness. I’ve thought of getting certificates. But could I become a health coach without certificates? I feel like my bachelor’s have given me a good foundation of how to help people. Are there volunteer opportunities that I could do to get practice and more experience being a health coach? I feel like that would give me the confidence that I need.

    • Michelle on October 24, 2022 at 10:50 am

      Hi Kayleena. Thanks for your message. Absolutely you can become a health coach without certificates. This is an unregulated industry and lots of people are out there doing their own things.

      There are lots of free and low cost tools and resources to support you. For example I do have a YouTube Channel with tons of free tutorials on how to coach.

      I also have my Brilliant Health Coach Bundle which is a very low cost offer that will give you exactly how to coach through a 60-minute session.

      If you feel confident in your skills, process and approach then I would say go for it. I also hear you say you are terrified because you have no idea what to cover in a session. My belief is that lack of confidence and skill is going to hold you back from getting clients.

      Many people work with pro bono clients at first – I do have a video here on this with my approach, you can also find another health coach who is willing to be an accountability partner and buddy who you could practice with. A big focus of my Health Coaching Essentials Course is live practice each week.

      Hope some of these tips and resources help.

    • Michelle on July 23, 2023 at 2:02 pm

      Here’s a video I recorded on how to conduct a health coaching session. As for volunteer opportunities to get practice, I recorded this video on why I’m no a big fan of pro bono clients and what to do instead

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