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Surrey and Hampshire


Counselling and Psychotherapy - The Difference


Counselling and Psychotherapy are interchangable therapies that often overlap in a number of ways.
The key difference is the treatment time. Although in many ways similar to psychotherapy, counselling
is usually a shorter term treatment which tends to deal with more recent and often quite specific difficulties.

Like counselling, psychotherapy is a talking therapy during which thoughts, feelings and behaviour patterns are explored and more healthy coping strategies learned. However psychotherapy is a term which is used to describe a treatment for emotional problems which emanate from the past. It tends
to refer to longer-term help that is designed to bring about deeper changes in self-understanding and patterns of relating.


How does it work?


Mostly individuals choose to have therapy because they are experiencing difficulties and distress. Sometimes people can be isolated but at other times, even where an individual has the most supportive family and friends, they can find it difficult if not impossible to explain why; for example, they may be feeling anxious and or depressed. Or it may be easier to talk about personal, family, or relationship issues with a person who is independent of friends and family. Other life issues and events, which can be very difficult to deal with, include bereavement, divorce, redundancy, health issues, bullying etc. However, you do not have to be in crisis or on the verge of one, before choosing to have therapy; you may be experiencing underlying feelings of dissatisfaction with life in general or be seeking balance in your life.

How will I know if it’s helping?


During regular reviews we will discuss what is working for you or not, and how you would like your sessions to develop, progress or come to an end.


"The task of counselling is to give the client an opportunity
to explore, discover and clarify ways of living more
resourcefully and toward greater well being.”

(British Association for Counselling. 1985)


© Johanna Keiller 2016, all rights reserved