5 Tips In Self-Care For Coaches and How Can NLP Help?

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In the dynamic world of coaching, the focus often centres on helping clients achieve their goals, overcome challenges, and unlock their potential. However, amidst this dedication to others, it is crucial for coaches to prioritise their own well-being through effective self-care. This ensures a win-win for their personal health and their professional effectiveness. For those who are self-employed, this becomes even more critical as they are their own most valued asset. Self-care is the foundation upon which successful and sustainable coaching practices are built. If we are in a good place, our practice will be too and clients get their results.

The Pitfalls of Neglecting Self-Care

Working for oneself often comes with the temptation to overwork. The need to say “yes” to every opportunity can lead to exhaustion. It’s easy to fall into the trap of endless working hours, driven by the fear of missing out on potential clients or opportunities. This relentless drive can make it difficult to switch off, leading to questions about who is really in charge of the business – the practitioner or the workload. Without proper boundaries, this can result in burnout, reduced effectiveness, and even compromised health.

Understanding Self-Care

Self-care is the practice of maintaining and improving one’s health and well-being through proactive and deliberate actions. For coaches, this means addressing physical, emotional and mental needs to ensure they can perform at their best. It involves recognising the signs of stress, fatigue, and burnout and taking appropriate measures to mitigate these issues before they impact both personal well-being and professional performance.

Addressing issues promptly rather than postponing them is key. For instance, if we feel uncertain, lack confidence, or hold limiting beliefs, these feelings can unconsciously affect our clients. Tackling these issues as soon as they arise prevents negative emotions from being projected onto our clients, ensuring a clear and positive state essential for effective practice.

The Role of NLP in Self-Care

I often get asked “how do I look after myself as a Coach?” whilst working with clients on a variety of challenges. NLP offers a comprehensive toolkit for self-care, providing techniques and strategies that help coaches maintain their well-being and effectiveness. NLP is not just about working with others; it’s equally about applying these powerful techniques to oneself. It’s the ultimate self-care toolkit.

Managing Emotional States with NLP

One of the core aspects of NLP is managing our internal states and what we say to ourselves, in other words our internal communication. Coaches want to be in the right state of mind to provide the best support to their clients. This is primarily achieved by using a ‘coach state’ meaning that the NLP coach is completely aligned in mind and body, free of distraction and totally focused with all of their resources, ready to work with the client. There are other NLP techniques such as anchoring can also help. Anchoring involves creating a stimulus response link (like a bridge) to access past resourceful states and apply them in the present.

For instance, a visual anchor like looking at a favourite photo can evoke positive feelings experienced during that time. Depending upon the nature of the photo, this can be used to induce a state of self-belief or resourcefulness before starting a session. Similarly, a kinesthetic anchor can trigger a desired emotional state by touch. Auditory anchors, like a mobile phone ringtone or a favourite song can also be used to create powerful links to emotions. Creating these anchors with purpose helps coaches maintain the desired state, ensuring they are fully present and effective during sessions.


person jumping free from everyday fears and nerves, nervous, nervousness for self-care

Maintaining Work-Life Balance

Balancing work with relaxation and ensuring time for self-care is essential. NLP provides tools to set clear boundaries and manage time effectively. Techniques such as outcome setting and chunking tasks into manageable parts can help coaches structure their day better, ensuring they have time for both professional responsibilities and personal relaxation. Using hypnosis can be extremely effective in experiencing deep relaxation to recharge and ‘unplug’ (check out our recent blog).

5 Practical Self-Care Tips for Coaches

Here are five practical self-care tips for coaches, incorporating NLP principles:

Tip 1 Set Boundaries: Limit the number of clients you work with each day to manage your energy effectively. Define your goals and boundaries clearly.

Tip 2 Schedule Downtime: Allocate time after each session to decompress, reflect, and perform any necessary self-maintenance. Use visualisation techniques to imagine a peaceful place or activity that helps you relax. If you are trained in NLP and have the additional skillsets, use self-hypnosis for relaxation and Time Line Therapy® for maintenance.

Tip 3 Create Anchors: Develop and use anchors to maintain focus and openness, to be in the right place at the right time and frame of mind. For example, create a kinesthetic anchor to feel calm and resourceful or create the same with a visual anchor on an object in your consulting room or office.

Tip 4 Use Reframing Techniques: When faced with challenges, reframe them find the positive aspects and learnings. This shifts your perspective and reduces stress.

Tip 5 Seek Support: Engage in regular supervision or peer support groups to discuss challenges and share experiences. At new perspective NLP we provide a comprehensive supervision programme for NLP Coaches, enhancing these interactions.

Handling Negative Emotions

Coaching often involves dealing with clients’ negative emotions, which can be draining. NLP techniques such as reframing, dissociation and Time Line Therapy®   help coaches manage their emotional responses and avoid absorbing. Reframing involves changing the way we think about and perceive a situation or problem on the inside, thereby changing its meaning and impact and ultimately our behaviour. Dissociation techniques help in creating emotional distance from negative experiences, allowing coaches to remain objective and unaffected to do what they do best. We use Time Line Therapy® in various ways including releasing major negative emotions of Anger, Sadness, Fear, Hurt and Guilt. Maintenance of own negative emotions is crucial and so we can use Time Line Therapy® on self to ‘clean out’ on a regular basis.

Building Personal Strength

Personal strength (resilience) is the ability to bounce back from setbacks and challenges. NLP offers many ways to build and manage personal strength, such as creating new patterns of behaviour (strategies), reframing, anchoring, use of swish pattern, hypnotherapy and Time Line Therapy®. These techniques help coaches to resolve past challenges, focus on their positive outcomes whilst moving forward enhancing their ability to cope with stress and adversity.

Conclusion: Investing in Your Self-Care

Prioritising self-care is not just a personal indulgence; it is a professional necessity. As coaches, our well-being directly impacts our ability to help others. By incorporating NLP techniques into a self-care routine, Coaches can maintain their health, enhance professional effectiveness, and provide the best possible support to clients. Investing in well-being ensures a sustainable and successful coaching practice, benefiting both the coach and their clients.

To take the next step contact us on how we can help you boost your self-care with our NLP Development Programmes

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Rod Hahlo

Rod is a Trainer of NLP and Personal Development Master Coach, based in Bolton, Lancashire.

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