To target weight loss or not to target weight loss?

Hi Brooke and team!

I’m working to build my business as a health coach/nutritionist/life coach. I have yet to gain much traction in my business and it seems it’s because I’m still not super clear on the problem I solve for people.

Currently, I have refined my target market to women (upper middle class, educated/career focused, mid 20s – mid 30s) who don’t feel good in their bodies, feel unattractive and complacent, but want to feel more energetic and more confident in their bodies. They struggle with cravings and emotional eating, don’t love their bodies, and are stuck in the yo-yo dieting cycle.

A huge mental block that I keep coming across is that I don’t want to market myself as a weight loss coach. I really love the body positivity movement and healthy at every size movement, and my philosophy is much more aligned with the idea that you should take care of your health and your body for the sake of being healthy, feeling good, and having a body that is capable and well functioning, and that weight really doesn’t have much to do with it.

Beyond that, I really dislike how the weight loss industry makes it seem like if you are heavier, there is something wrong with you and you need to fix your body, and this is something I do not want to perpetuate in my business.

And lastly, I’ve never actually been overweight myself. I’m fairly well educated in the fields of health and nutrition (I have a masters degree in nutrition and functional medicine), but weight loss is not my personal life experience. In that way, another thought I’m having is that in building a personal brand it’s best to help people overcome something you’ve already overcome, and I’ve not overcome my weight. I feel like I can personally relate to the weight loss journey in that it is the same mental journey I’m taking working to be a successful entrepreneur, but not directly in how I feel in my body. However, I HAVE felt not very confident or beautiful/attractive/energetic at times, and this is why I’d like to focus more on that struggle (though to be completely honest I don’t feel 100% aligned with that either. I feel like I *should* feel like, “YES, this is something I’ve struggled SO much with and have finally overcome and now I want to share it with others!” but I don’t feel that strongly about it, I just think it’s something people struggle with that I have the tools and knowledge to help with).

This is getting to be really long, my apologies…

To summarize and really get to the main question, I don’t want to target weight loss because it feels icky (T: weight loss is body shaming, I have no business teaching others to lose weight when I haven’t lost weight). My struggle then becomes, what is a burning pain point that will make people take action (i.e. seek coaching) to feel better in their bodies that isn’t weight loss? Wanting to feel confident and energetic, and getting out of emotional eating/yo-yo dieting, without the mention of weight, just doesn’t feel compelling enough.

I sometimes think about removing the health component all together and doing straight life coaching for struggling entrepreneurs who need to manage their minds and get out of their own way. This is something I can relate to SO much better (this is me right now!!) but I go back to the thoughts – 1) I don’t have any business helping people with something I’m still deeply struggling with, 2) health and nutrition are important and I want to be able to teach people about them, and 3) I don’t actually have any qualifications for being a life coach because I haven’t gone through coach training.

I know this is super long, but any clarity you can offer on how to think differently about my offerings and target market would be SO appreciated! Thank you!