What’s the difference?

Counselling

Very simply it could be said that counselling is a short-term therapy, or what is brought into the therapy room is material that does not require deep long term exploration but more straight forward approaches to resolving ongoing issues, which could be worked with relatively well by the client independently from the therapist.

Psychotherapy

This mode of therapy is generally considered as long term, which can be anywhere from one month to several years.

With this way of working the client and therapist begin to form an enriching therapeutic working relationship, and work toward trust, congruence and a sense of oneness in order to find the causes of tension within the psyche. 

Transferential feelings are active and a relational supportive psychological environment can be formed.
From this state of being unconscious feelings can be brought to light and worked with, rather than against.

Therapeutic Traditions

The history of therapy travels back in time as far back as ancient Egypt, where healing was considered an essential practice.

In more recent times Sigmund Freud's ways of therapy has become well known in the form of Psychoanalysis and the use of the therapists couch.

Freud's concept of transference and countertransference forms the backbone for many psychotherapists work in their practice, including my own.

During this process the client can bring behaviors from past experiences onto the therapist. In this type of exchange, unconscious feelings and experiences can reveal themselves and be worked with in the therapy room bringing the past into the now. The use of free association and interpretation are other hallmarks from Freudian tradition, which I find insightful and progressive.
During the 1950's in America Dr. Carl Rogers work with Person Centered Therapy became very prominent in the therapy world. His way and style have become well established with therapists over the years.

Today this model of working is also called Person Centered Humanistic Therapy. With this form of therapy the therapist works with the client in the 'hear and now', staying with the narrative of the client, not interpreting, and avoiding transference intervention.

From the Existential tradition a person is helped to realise how they exist in the world, their relationship with themselves, their relationship to others and the world that surrounds them.

This modality finds its structures and foundations in the philosophical works of Friedrich Nietzsche, Søren Kierkegaard, John-Paul Sartre and Martin Heidegger.
More recently, and in existence, Irvin D. Yalom and Emmy Van Deurzen to name two.

Existentialism has a philosophical approach to life, which can bring reality to an individual seeking his or her truth.

In facing problematic issues and working towards transformative development, the truth of a person's world can begin to be made more understandable, and allow for accountability and responsibility in ongoing daily existence.

So what is the difference between Counselling and Psychotherapy?

Many would say there is little difference between counselling and psychotherapy; this said from a philosophical perspective and in a sense perhaps that's true. In the meeting of the client and therapist sitting together, a combination of psychological processes from both client and therapist will be present and active during the therapeutic meeting.

One could say these processes integrate to form a way and style of working covering many approaches of discovery for the client.

Psychological conditions worked with.

  • Abuse
  • Addictions
  • Anger
  • Anxiety
  • Antisocial Personality Disorder
  • Borderline Personality Disorder
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Bullying
  • Depression
  • Fear
  • Family Issues
  • Gay and Transgender Issue
  • Greif and Loss








  • Hoarding and Attachment
  • Narcissism
  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (O.C.D)
  • Paranoia
  • Personality disorders
  • Rape - Trauma
  • Repetitive unsettlement - Circular Thinking
  • Relationship problems (Marriage, Partnerships)
  • Self Esteem and confidence
  • Stress
  • Sex and Intimacy issues
  • Trauma
  • Terminal Illness
  • Work related problems