Try a Free Online Workshop

Change Your Patterns

CARC Life Coaching Certification

We have written this page not only to describe CARC Certifications, but also to address some of the frequently asked questions about them.

CARC Certifications

There are two types of CARC Certification and, as a graduate of the ARCS Healing Journey — you will earn both of them:

The CARC-I sanctions you to work as a Certified Addiction-Recovery Coach, throughout the UnitedStates — furthermore, ARCS is currently securing international sanctioning for all CARC-I Coachesby 2023. As an Addiction-Recovery Coach you will be trained for highly specialized work with both substanceand behavioral addicts, as well as with their family members and loved ones who also suffer greatlyand need informed guidance. As you go through ARCS Healing Journey lessons, you will come to find that the basic principles ofaddiction and recovery apply to changing any and all unwanted emotional, cognitive, behavioral andrelationship patterns — not just cycles that are clinically classified as “addictions”. So as a CARC, you’ll be able to choose the populations and issues on which you wish to focus. The“sky is the limit”, in terms of who your coaching services will be able to help.

The CARC-II sanctions you to work as a Certified Abuse-Recovery Coach, throughout the United States — and ARCS is also in the process of securing international sanctioning for all CARC-II Coaches by 2023. As an Abuse-Recovery Coach you will be trained for highly specialized work with survivors of dysfunctional families, toxic relationships, childhood abuse, domestic violence and any other form of trauma. As you go through ARCS Healing Journey lessons, you will discover that the clinical definition of “trauma” is remarkably broad and that many who do not consider themselves to be “survivors” have, in fact, endured stressful emotional circumstances which have impacted their development, relationships, self-esteem and well-being — much more than they realize. ARCS Coaches have worked with overt abuse survivors, but we have also helped clients who suffer from situational trauma such as discrimination, poverty, warfare, or growing up with addiction, death, divorce or other losses within the family system. We also regularly help individuals who received the bulk of their needs during childhood, but for one small yet crucial “missing factor” like steadfast encouragement, unconditional approval, support for their autonomy, or just the availability to “be a kid.” Such situations are often not a reflection of bad parenting (since there is no such thing as a “perfect parent”) but, rather, of the fact that we each human being inherits internal “stuff” to work out — this is simply part of life and “why we are here.” Each of these and many similar circumstances can have long-term effects and clinically qualify as “trauma”. So again, as a CARC you will be able to choose the populations and issues on which you wish to focus.

Navigating Certification

The landscape of coaching and counseling credentials is vast, so many who have not yet formally entered the field can become easily confused by finely parsed distinctions between sanctions. This is further complicated by the fact that each US state has different guidelines, so we will start by giving an overview of various professional titles and legal entities:

Licensed Therapists
Most if not all US states require fulfillment of the following criteria, for someone to become a licensed therapist with sanction to see clients in one state:

  • 1. University Bachelors Degree in one of the counseling disciplines (costs vary)
  • 2. University Masters Degree in one of the counseling disciplines (costs vary)
  • 3. Two years of post-grad supervision, paid by the graduate (usually about 250.00 per hour)
  • 4. Take the state licensing exam (usually about 500.00-1,000.00)
  • 5. Annual dues and fees, to keep licensure active (costs vary)
  • 6. Annual continuing education courses and credits, to keep licensure active (costs vary)
  • 7. Refiling for steps 4-7 if the therapist moves to another state

The ARCS Program used to be available only for licensed clinicians who wanted to acquire additional training in addiction and correlated trauma, but in 2017 ARCS redeveloped its core curriculum to make CARC Coaching Certifications available to clients who are seeking emotional empowerment and feel inspired to help others.

State-Based Certifications
Just as someone might go to their local community college to enroll in a massage therapy, cosmetology or phlebotomy certification program, each state offers various certificates in some form of addiction or peer counseling. By and large, these state-based certificates are designed for graduates to gain access to entry-level positions in related facilities. For example, an addiction counselor in one state might perform intake assessments at a local treatment center. Or a peer counselor in another state might assist licensed therapists as they facilitate groups in a residential mental health unit. CARC Life Coaching Certification is designed to establish your own private coaching practice, seeing clients from across the United States — with no need to refile or take another exam after you graduate, if you move from one state to another. If your aspirations are to work as an employee in a facility, ARCS recommends that you explore state-based certifications in your area.

Private Certifications
The diversity of private certifications abounds, and private certification programs can also be substantially more responsive and creative in the overall curriculum offerings and specific lesson topics that they curate for their students, because they are not bound to state funding or to intensive state regulation — and this freedom applies to their graduates and coaches, as well. In fact, many licensed therapists end up attaining several private certifications in addition to their state licensure — just to “fill in” the practical learning gaps that their university education may not have provided and to continue adding additional methodologies and specializations to their practice. As we mentioned before, ARCS offered CARC Certifications exclusively to already-licensed practitioners until 2017, when we opened the doors for our students to ultimately become “the teac

CARC Accreditation and Purpose

CARC Life Coaching Certifications are private certifications accredited by a private board: The National Board of Abuse-Recovery Professionals ( The NBARP also provides ARCS with grants for at-risk clients.
Being a private entity allows us to offer you the ARCS Healing Journey without sacrificing any of the content within its transformative process to please outside funders or oversight. ARCS is a unique, revolutionary, “grass roots” mission designed to empower all “survivors”, specifically, and all human beings, in general — and we are committed to keeping it that way

You will come to find that ARCS is not a mere program — we are a movement, and we are a family.

CARC Certifications entitle you to work with any population other than minors or adults who cannot legally offer consent to enter coaching on their own behalf. Furthermore, you can work with clients from anywhere in the US — and by 2023, we plan to offer international sanctioning to all CARCs (including those who have already graduated and those who will graduate prior to 2023). CARCs can offer individual, couples, related-group (family, small group) and unrelated group (large group, workshops, classes) sessions to their clients in-person, via telephone or online. How a Coach designs their practice is truly each CARC’s choice and preference — just as you will be able to decide which populations and issues you are most passionate about addressing.

CARC Certification is available to anyone who meets three basic criteria:

1. at least 18 years of age
ARCS cannot formally offer services to minors, although we have had several enrolled parents make their own decision to allow their children to “sit in” on live ARCS workshops with them, grateful that they will have the distinct advantage of inheriting advanced emotional skills at an early age.

2. live in the United States (the 48 contiguous states, Alaska or Hawaii)
This geographical limitation currently stands but is scheduled to become irrelevant by 2023, when ARCS “goes international.”

3. no felony or misdemeanor “of a violent nature” on one’s legal record.
ARCS does appreciate that many who have criminal histories make wonderful Coaches. For example, a CARC who specializes in working with addicts may be particularly gifted in working with this population because they are a recovering addict themselves, and this means that they could have previous DUI/DWI, drug possession or even distribution charges on their record.

So ARCS “draws the line” at “no violent offenses”, including no presence on any sex offender registry. With that said, we do occasionally encounter case-by-case scenarios in which a domestic violence victim has been wrongly but successfully convicted of assault by their abuser (unfortunately, this is quite common) or in which a youth was placed on the sex offender’s registry for being 18 and having consensual sex with a 17-year-old partner (which most of us would agree does not merit ruining someone’s life). So, ARCS offers a Certificate of Completion for anyone who wishes to grow through our Healing Journey Program and does not meet the pre-requisites for CARC Certifications. If you are unsure about whether legal charges on your record satisfy the criteria for coaching certification, email all details surrounding your case to

While ARCS certifications do not require any formal “continuing education credits”, actively practicing CARCs must carry professional liability insurance (usually about 200.00 or less, per year), and this stipulation is an “industry standard” designed to protect you (the Coach), even more than your clients! Also, CARCs who are offering their coaching services to the public are expected to engage in some form of ongoing self-care and professional mentorship, which they can choose to receive from ARCS or from an outside entity, and which is designed to ensure that you stay emotionally fit and professionally competent within your practice because “triggers” and ethical dilemmas will sometimes arise over the course of your coaching career. Best of all — and unlike any other coaching or counseling education program, including university degree programs — ARCS provides you with the post-grad option to avail yourself of all the information, functionality and support you will need to build your coaching practice on our platform.

After you complete the ARCS Healing Journey and earn both CARC Life Coaching Certifications,you’re welcome to join us on the Coaching Journey, as a Professional Member of ARCS.

Your First Step

Your first step is to try a free online workshop to see if this program is right for you.

Register Now