Questions to ask myself about whether to become a coach

Hi Coaches,

Your attorney friend is back with another question 🙂

So, I’ve been a lawyer for 15 years. A couple years ago I thought I was burned out and thought I wanted to become a life coach instead. I opened up a separate business entity for that purpose and let it just sit there. I didn’t do anything to find coaching clients and couldn’t figure out why I wanted to do it other than run away from frustration. So, I decided it would be better if I made peace with being an attorney before I left it.

And I did. I made peace with it. The 50% I still dislike is still there, but my attitude about it is different. Stuff that used to freak me out and make me lose sleep is now much more manageable.

Here’s the rub. Part of me wants to stay in law because I know I have more unfulfilled potential stretched out before me that I have not achieved, and I want to see what’s possible for me, and the impact I can make in my particular area…impact that could actually improve certain conditions for millions of people in my state.

But part of me knows that I have invested a lot of time figuring out how to be a successful lawyer while remaining physically and mentally healthy, and I’m one that a lot of other lawyers call on for advice, especially younger/newer lawyers. There’s a serious lack of effective mentoring in my industry. Since most mentoring in this field is expected to be done for free, it is inconsistent. I’d love to make it worth more. So I’m still intrigued by what potential is stretched out before me in the area of coaching, and in the niche of coaching other women lawyers on how to thrive in this industry. There is a need out there. And, I have evidence that there is potentially more scaleability and greater income coaching other lawyers than there is in practicing law. Law is a service that is not easily scaleable.

But part of me thinks that there is no way that I can be truly effective at both at the same time — you know, what Confucius said: “he who chases two rabbits catches none.” So I keep defaulting to the lawyering, and despite being at peace with it, wonder if there is more impact and more income in coaching.

If I do one or the other, I feel like I’m shortchanging myself. What questions could I ask myself to help me sort this out?