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Information about ICF Certification at Each Level

Intro: Discover Your Ikigai Program - Part 1 of Ikigai Coach Certification

Linking to 1st ICF Core Competency called the “Foundation”: Demonstrating not only a good understanding of Ikigai but also how it can be used in coaching – honouring & using the ICF’s Ethical Practice Definition: “Understands & consistently applies coaching ethics & standards of coaching”.  

Demonstrating personal integrity & honesty in interactions with clients, sponsors & relevant stakeholders. Being sensitive to clients’ identity, environment, experiences, values & beliefs. Using language appropriate & respectful to clients, sponsors & relevant stakeholders. Abiding by the ICF Code of Ethics & upholds the ICF Core Values. Maintaining confidentiality with client info per stakeholder agreements & pertinent laws. Also maintaining the distinctions between coaching, consulting, psychotherapy & other support professions. Referring clients to other support professionals, as appropriate. 

Also linking to the 2nd ICF Core Competency embodying the SG I-AMBA Model (adapted from Pellerin 2009) & SG Triangle Model (SG 2020) covered in our Intro Program. Along with an Ikigai Growth Mindset, & mindful of the ICF’s Coaching Mindset Definition: “Develops & maintains a mindset that is open, curious, flexible & client-centred.”  


Acknowledging that clients are responsible for their own choices. Engaging in Continuous Professional Development (CPD) as an SG Ikigai Coach. Developing ongoing Reflective Practice (RP) to enhance one’s Ikigai Coaching. Remaining aware of & open to the influence of context & culture on self & others. Using awareness of self & one’s intuition to benefit clients. Developing & maintaining the ability to regulate one’s emotions. Mentally & emotionally preparing for sessions. Seeking help from outside sources when necessary.

Intermediate: Deepening Discovery for Life - Part 2 of Ikigai Coach Cert.

Advanced Program - Part 3 of Ikigai Coach Certification

Linking to 6th, 7th & 8th ICF Core Competencies which cover all aspects of communicating effectively with clients & stakeholders. Honouring the ICF definition of Listening Actively: “Focusing on what the client is & is not saying to fully understand what is being communicated in the context of the client systems & to support client self-expression.”  

Considering the client’s context, identity, environment, experiences, values & beliefs to enhance understanding of what the client is communicating. Reflecting/summarising what the client communicates to ensure clarity & understanding. Recognising & inquiring when there is more to what the client is communicating. Noticing, acknowledging, exploring emotions, energy shifts, non-verbal cues, or other behaviours. Integrating the client’s words, tone of voice & body language to determine the full meaning of what is being communicated. Noticing trends in the client’s behaviours & emotions across sessions to discern themes & patterns.  

Honouring the ICF’s definition of Evoking Awareness: “Facilitating client insight & learning by using tools & techniques such as powerful questioning, silence, metaphor, or analogy.” 

Considering client experience when deciding what might be most useful. Challenging the client to evoke awareness or insight. Asking questions about the client, such as their way of thinking, values, needs, wants & beliefs - helping them to explore beyond current thinking. 

Inviting the client to share more about their experience in the moment. Noticing what is working to enhance client progress. Adjusting the coaching approach in response to the client’s needs. Helping them to identify factors that influence current & future patterns of behaviour, thinking or emotion. Inviting the client to generate ideas about how they can move forward & what they are willing or able to do. Supporting them in reframing perspectives. Sharing observations, insights & feelings, without attachment, that have the potential to create new learning for the client. 

Honouring the ICF’s definition of Cultivating Learning & Growth: “Partnering with the client to transform learning & insight into action. Promoting client autonomy in the coaching process.” 

Working with the client to integrate new awareness, insight or learning into their worldview & behaviours. Partnering with them to design goals, actions & accountability measures that integrate & expand new learning. Acknowledging & supporting client autonomy in the design of goals & accountability for actions. Supporting the client in identifying potential results or learning from identified actions. Inviting them to consider how to move forward, including resources, support & potential barriers. Partnering with them to summarise learning & insight within or between sessions Celebrating the client’s progress & successes. Partnering with the client to close the session & or coaching program. 

Ref: International Coaching Federation (ICF, Oct 2019), Core Competences, USA 

Linking to 3rd, 4th & 5th ICF Core Competencies which cover Co-creation & Building Trust for Psychological Safety, & Maintain Presence. Honouring the ICF’s definition of Establishing & Maintaining Agreements:“Partnering with clients & relevant stakeholders to create clear agreements about the Ikigai Coaching relationship, process, plans & goals.”

Establishing agreements for the overall coaching engagement as well as those for each coaching session. Explaining what coaching is & is not – being able to describe the process to the client & relevant stakeholders. Reaching agreement about what is & is not appropriate in the relationship, what is & is not being offered, & the responsibilities of the client/ relevant stakeholders. Reaching agreement about the guidelines & specific parameters of the coaching relationship such as logistics, fees, scheduling, duration, termination, confidentiality & inclusion of others. Partnering with the client & relevant stakeholders to: 

  • establishing an overall coaching plan & highest intention/goal.  

  • determining client-coach compatibility, & identifying/reconfirming what they want to accomplish. 

  • defining what the client believes they need to address or resolve to achieve what they want. 

  • defining/reconfirming measure of success for what the client wants to accomplish from coaching. 

  • managing the time & focus; coaching in the direction of the client’s desired outcome(s). 

  • ending the coaching relationship in a way that honours the experience. 

Honouring the ICF’s definition of Cultivating Trust & Safety: “Partnering with clients to create a safe, supportive environment that allows them to share freely - maintaining a relationship of mutual respect & trust.”  

Seeking to understand the client within their context which may include their identity, environment, experiences, values, & beliefs. Demonstrating respect for the client’s identity, perceptions, style & language - adapting one’s coaching to the client. Acknowledging & respecting the client’s unique talents, insights, & work in the coaching process. Showing empathy & concern for the client. Acknowledging & supporting their expression of feelings, perceptions, concerns, beliefs, & suggestions. Demonstrating openness & transparency to display vulnerability & continue to build & maintain trust. 

Honouring the ICF Definition of Maintaining Presence: Being fully conscious & present with the client, employing a style that is open, flexible, grounded & confident.” 

Remaining focused, observant, empathetic, & responsive to the client. Demonstrating curiosity during the coaching process. Managing one’s emotions to stay present. Demonstrating confidence in working with strong client emotions during the coaching process. Being comfortable working in a space of not knowing. Creating or allowing space for silence, pause or reflection. 

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