The topic of mental health has become more and more prominent in the past two years. Impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, the war between Russia and Ukraine, the energy crisis...
No one is safe from the after-effects of the post2020 reality.
A 2022 State of Mental Health in America report found that +27 million adults in the US live with a mental health illness - that has gone untreated.
Organizations are hence taking baby steps to ensure that employees' emotional, psychological, and social well-being are safeguarded.
But the big question needs to be addressed sooner than later.
What can be done to improve and sustain teams' and individuals' mental health?
That's where you come in.
Mental health coaches are not just having their moment, but becoming vital structures to
- facilitate and direct individuals' inner worlds (perceptions and understanding) and resources (skills and abilities).
- Reflect on the current situation and design plans for the future.
- Make sure that the desired outcomes are a result of simple day-to-day habits.
Wondering how to show your mental health coach experience and skills on your resume?
Our guide will help you
- stand out from the crowd
- show your unique value
- take recruiters or potential clients on a journey...
...to understand why you're the best fit for the role.
What you’ll learn in this guide
- Strategic approach to your mental health resume: choosing the most relevant experience and resume formatting to stand out.
- Recruiters' go-to-checklist when assessing your resume.
- Why you should highlight your Emotional intelligence and other skills?
- 10+ most popular mental health coaching certificates.
- Volunteering, hobbies, and other skills to supplement your mental health coach experience.
Looking for related resumes?
- Health Coach
- Care Manager
- Social Worker
- Training Manager
- Talent Manager
- Change Management
- Problem Manager
- Continuous Improvement Manager
How to write a mental health coach resume
Working in mental health, you know how important it is to assess your patients' needs, set goals, strategize, and adapt at every step of the way.
When writing your resume, take a page from your practice.
- First, address the industry's expectations. Select between two and three jobs you'd like to apply for and compare those with your experience.
- Align the role requirements with your up-to-date resume. This would ideally help you to choose the key points and qualities, that you'd like to address (or prove).
- Start thinking about the big picture of things. Use your patient care (treatment, counseling, and therapy) skills to point out how you could impact the company culture.
- Strategically prioritize relevant experience, achievements, and skills. In other words, what makes the most sense for your potential role?
- Always remember to customize your resume to meet individual job requirements.
Mental health coach top resume sections
- Headline - showing your unique value proposition
- Summary - to showcase key highlights of your experience
- Experience - including contract work
- Education and Certification - to show accreditation
- Skills - to dive into the details of your previous roles
Once you've mapped out your key strengths, experience, and achievements, it's time to choose your resume format.
We recommend functional-based, where you detail all your related experience and skills. And then go on to list other experience points, only if you deem those relevant.
The reverse-chronological format could also work wonders for your mental health coach resume. It allows you to include all the roles you've had, starting with your most recent experience.
Hybrid formatting balances your experience and skills. Use this format if you have had many past contract or temp roles.
Recruiters’ go-to checklist for your mental health coach resume
- Have you worked directly with patients? What form of therapy are you most familiar with?
- Tangible results, hinted at via hours of practice, constantly-updated accreditation, and contract lifetime.
- Success stories - keeping in mind the ethics of the profession - what was your role in helping patients improve their mental health?
- What was/is your influence on the industry? Have you had opportunities to teach or lead teams?
- Would your mental health soft skills help you fit into the organizational culture?
Creating the perfect mental health coach resume header
Recruiters or the applicant tracking system (ATS), assessing your resume, would need to find your relevant contact information on the spot.
Hint: your resume header is the perfect opportunity to do so.
Apart from the obvious (your name), don't forget to include your:
- contact details (email and telephone number)
- address (city, state/ country)
- portfolio of work (it could be your professional blog or LinkedIn profile).
This information is followed by your resume headline. It needs to show potential employers what makes you unique.
There are a few strategic paths you could take.
The first is to focus more on your professional background. Highlight (briefly) your approach, relevant certifications, or a key achievement in your headline. Don't forget to always add numbers to qualify your success.
The second is to showcase your soft skills, including ethics, values, and communication. This would build on to answering the “what else can you bring to the job, apart from experience?” recruiters' question.
Always make sure to consider what the top requirements for the role are, and then structure your headline from there.
Don't forget that headers are meant to be skimmed over, quickly, so don't go overboard with too many details.
2 mental health coach resume header examples
The first header doesn’t define what the unique value of the coach is. On top of everything, the empty link doesn’t showcase his previous experience.
The second obviously works, as it has the candidate’s full contact information and qualifies his results.
What’s in a mental health coach resume summary?
The summary of your mental health coach resume gives you the space to explain your unique selling points as a coach.
To do so, select some of the following key achievements to highlight your expertise.
- Consider how you could make the specifics of your expertise meet the requirements of the role. Focus on therapy methods, counseling, and case management and evaluations.
- What methods do you use to treat patients? Are you more familiar with Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA) or Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)?
- How many years have you been working in the industry? Make sure to list the hours of practice you have.
- If you've worked on contracts with various clients, make sure you list the timeframes. This gives a better sense of the continuity of your roles.
- Define your growth via extracurriculars (e.g. certifications, conferences, research papers, etc.).
All these elements should help you to paint the full picture of your professional expertise.
Your summary has to be three-to-five sentences long and leave a lasting impression. Use it to hint at your further experience, and intrigue recruiters to find out more.
2 mental health coach resume summary examples
Avoid the first-person narrative as much as possible, as it doesn’t make a good impression on recruiters. The above example only maps years and patients; including a keyword or two.
You need to have more substantial proof in your mental health coach resume summary.
The resume summary example above works as it:
- Immediately gets into what the added value could be when working with the coach.
- Showcases some of the methodologies for improving patients’ mental well-being.
- Uses relevant certification to hint at following the industry’s best practices (and standards).
Mental health coach resume experience section: what matters the most?
Resume work experience should better define your expertise in managing patients' journeys.
First, consider what roles you could include. A few relevant choices are
- Clinical social worker (licensed) - to better define patient care skills and possible leadership opportunities (in supervising or managing medical staff).
- Registered behavioral technician - once again with a focus on certification and therapy methods.
- Customer service representative - this one may seem out of the blue, but it showcases how you can resolve problems via communication.
Once you've selected the roles you deem are closest to the job requirements, it's time to further branch out into your unique value.
First, define the non-clinical mental health niche you've specialized in. Issues you help patients resolve could include
- Stress and Anxiety
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Negative thinking
Use your experience to define how you've guided, supported, and motivated patients to bolster their mental health.
Specifics could include:
- helping patients manage their emotions
- improving relationship-building skills
- introducing new perspectives.
Another strategy you could is to showcase the action plans you've created to facilitate behavioral change. And the steps you've set to improve accountability and reach patient goals.
When you’ve decided on your previous roles, niche, and outcomes, it’s time to get into the…
Specifics of your achievements within your experience
Obviously, there's a wrong way to list your experience.
"I did this + skill"; "I did that + skill"; "I succeeded at+ skills" immediately damage your chances of landing an interview.
This format makes recruiters believe that you're all talk and no real action.
Your resume should narrate the story of what you've actually achieved.
As a mental health coach, it's your role to understand your patient needs and help them clarify their values or purpose. You'd thus set the ball rolling with a goal-oriented plan.
Mental health coaches help patients ultimately:
- improve their work-life balance
- enhance their stress management
- learn how to be accountable and handle challenges
- grow personally and professionally.
Within your resume, think about ways to illustrate this with achievements.
Think of it as a numbers game, where you use percentage, time, and cases you've resolved to prove your experience.
So, a good example would be: "Improved 12+ patients' work-life balance over 5 years by implementing daily goals."
Be as creative as you deem relevant to the job you're applying for.
Looking for more examples of what you should do?
Two mental health coach resume experience sections
- Spoke on the phone twice per week with 20+ patients at a time
- Helped them solve their problems with strategies
- Got 5-star feedback
- Mainly focused on stress-anxiety, depression, work-life balance cases
- Held bi-weekly meetings with 20+patients, focusing on setting individual strategies: goal-setting and tracking helped them reach 45% more
- Designed 200+ individual plans that were supplemented with various mental health tools (including counseling and therapy sessions) to help patients move from point A to B
- Maintained a 5-star AVG feedback for personalized approach and helpful, caring, and supportive
- Patient cases mostly focused on mapping out strategies to improve their living conditions, with an 88% success rate toward better mental health
This first example vaguely lists what the person did, with no mention of personality, skills, or actual achievements.
Within the “right example”, you’d notice that the candidate has listed a few key details in the description of their role/workplace.
Moving on, this mental health coach has qualified each achievement using percentage and experience.
What’s more, the candidate shows why they have attained a 5-star rating. That’s important as it gives you an opportunity to add extra skills: both technical and soft.
Speaking of skills, let’s get into the next section of our guide:
Mental health coach: what are the key skills to add to your resume?
As a mental health coach, it's important to show that you possess both hard or technical and soft skills.
Hard skills relate to the technologies you use through your practice. Think about the tools that make your life easier in communicating with patients.
Soft skills have more to do with who you are as a person and the qualities you've built over time. They're transferable from role to role and are individual.
Having a healthy mix of both skills signifies to recruiters that you are:
- willing to learn and grow
- on the crest of the innovation wave
- able to bring about expert and unique value.
And yes, we've created for you a list of some of the most relevant skills you can add to your mental health resume.
20+ Mental health coach technical skills for a resume
- Mental Health Counseling
- Patient Case Management
- Creating Mental Health Management Plans
- Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA) therapy
- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
- Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT)
- Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT)
- Eating Disorder Treatment
- Peer Recovery Coach
- ADHD Coach
- Addiction Support
- Filing Paperwork for Insurance Regulatory Agencies
- Disability Paperwork
- Scheduling Software
- Virtual Reality
- Mental Health Applications
- Blogs: Writing Articles and Research
- Social Media
- Video Conferencing Tools (Zoom, Teams, etc.)
- Instant Messaging Tools (slack, Viber, etc.)
Emotional intelligence and other soft skills for your resume
Emotional intelligence (EQ) is precisely the must-have skill for mental health coaches.
Working with patients, you'd help them build their EQ or:
- self-perception and self-expression
- relationship-building and decision-making skills
And being on the topic, emotional intelligence is a niche within which many coaches chose to specialize in.
Did you know that 75% of long-term job success depends on skills directly related to EQ?
So, how do you go about qualifying emotional intelligence on your resume?
Some may suggest listing a test score or the like. But imagine how confusing it's for recruiters to see "EQ107" from an unqualified test.
This means absolutely nothing to them.
Instead, you can create a separate strengths section - one that focuses on your experience and achievements.
This approach can be used to explain your emotional intelligence and other soft skills, including
Don’t forget to list some of these 20+ soft skills on your resume
- Patient Care
- Patient Assessment
- Emotional Intelligence
- Active Listening
- Creating Good Rapport
- Detail Oriented
- Strategic Thinking and Planning
- Fast Learner
- Public Speaking
- Conflict Resolution
- Willingness to Learn
- Relationship Management
- Direct Client Communication
Education details to include in your mental health coach resume
Your educational background shows recruiters your commitment to the field.
Most often, mental health coaches have a bachelor's degree in Sociology, Psychology, etc.; or a master's in Social Work. This is usually supplemented with relevant certifications and licenses.
Include all your higher education degrees by listing:
- the university name
- starting and graduation dates
If your degree is incomplete, make sure to note your expected graduation date.
If you've just graduated from high school and are thinking of starting a career as a mental health coach, here's what you can do.
Substitute the education section by leveraging your volunteering experience and certifications from relevant institutions (but more on that in the next section).
Mental health coach certificates: industry standards
This is one of the sections of your mental health coach resume you can't skip!
Certification is crucial for the coaching industry. They pinpoint ethical coaching that follows standards.
The truth is that accredited institutions have set a pretty high bar to pass. Having your knowledge, experience, and services certified with a "stamp of approval" sets you apart.
We have all seen many self-proclaimed experts and "pariahs". Ones who preach that they're the best but lack real-life expertise.
So, dedicate a separate section to your license(s) and International Coach Federation (ICF) certification. Thus showing recruiters that your experience has substantial proof.
And that your ability to help patients resolve issues, dive into emotions, and sustain relationships is more sophisticated.
You can also add any of the following, relevant certificates:
Top 12 mental health coach certificates for your resume
- CBT Integrative Wellness Life Coach Accredited Certification
- CBT Cognitive Behavioral Anxiety Management Life Coach
- CBT Cognitive Behavior Therapy Life Coaching Certification
- Certified Integrative Mental Health Professional
- Mental Health Coach Certification, Quality Mind
- ICF Accredited Mental Health & Wellness Coach Certification
- Certified Mental Health Coach, Neuro-Linguistic Programming
- Certified Professional Coach, Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching
- Professional Certified Coach, Institute for Life Coach Training
- Coach U’s Core Essential Program
- Advanced Diploma in Mental Health and Wellbeing Coaching, Kingston College
- Certified Holistic Mental Health Coach
Volunteering and other resume sections
If you've volunteered (or are a volunteer), you can dedicate a separate section to your experience.
This should include the institutions, time frame, and what you actually accomplished.
Also, make sure to prioritize volunteering experiences, where you’ve had to
- respond to inquiries
- build interpersonal relationships
- deal with crisis situations.
Other relevant resume sections you could include to better shine a light on your mental health coach experience and skills are
- Languages to better focus on your communication skills
- My Philosophy or My Time to show more personality
Whatever you chose, always make sure you align your experience with the job requirements for your future mental health coach position.
- Before starting to write your mental health coach, assess the job requirements and align those to your previous work with patients.
- In the resume summary, include your years of practice and niche; methodology and various extracurriculars.
- Always ensure that you can add a numerical value to each of your achievements to shine a light on the outcomes of your experience.
- Have a healthy balance between technical and soft skills, like therapy and emotional intelligence, to hint at your unique value as a professional.
- Your certificates should be used to highlight your ethics and standards of coaching.