Tara Cratchley
Adv Dip Couns, Dip Sup, MBACP (Accred)
Supportive, Skilled and Experienced Counselling and Supervision

Counselling and Psychotherapy

An Overview

In many ways it is often considered that there is significant overlap between counselling and psychotherapy. In fact different people use the words in different ways, sometimes to mean the same thing. There seems to be no commonly agreed definition, although both involve talking through difficulties of concern to you.

Counselling, in general, is usually shorter term work that is focused on enabling you to adjust to, or deal with, specific immediate issues you may be struggling with. The aim is for you to come to a better understanding of your concerns and find a way forward.

Psychotherapy is a longer term and more in depth process which offers the opportunity to look more deeply into difficulties which are affecting the quality of your life and relationships. It safely explores sometimes difficult and often painful feelings and experiences, unhelpful beliefs, thoughts and relevant issues that have been around for a long time.

Key Differences

Counselling:

  • Helps you to identify problems and crises, and encourages you to take positive steps to resolve the issues
  • Is the best course of therapeutic treatment for anyone who already has an understanding of wellbeing, and who is also able to resolve problems
  • Counselling is a short-term process that encourages the change of behaviour

Psychotherapy:

  • Helps you with psychological problems that have built up over the course of a long period of time
  • Helps you understand your feelings, thoughts and actions more clearly
  • Psychotherapy is a longer-term process of treatment that identifies emotional issues and the background to problems and difficulties

Whichever course of action we will take will be dependant upon the issues presented and the outcome desired. All therapy is discussed and agreed upon at the first session.

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