What Is Therapy And Counselling Header

What Is The Difference Between Therapy & Counselling?

So What Is Is Therapy & Counselling all about?: And why might you ever find yourself in a situation that would make you consider seeking a therapeutic approach? It’s one of the most confusing questions people ask themselves when they decide to seek help in the form of talking therapy (or counselling). For someone new to therapy and counselling, or any therapeutic mental health process it can look and feel to them like a bit of a grey area.

You will often be asking yourself “what is therapy, what is counselling, what is psychotherapy, and what does it all have to do with my needs?”

The words ‘therapy’ and ‘counselling (the same as ‘therapists’ and ‘counsellors’) are often used interchangeably in the UK under the category of ‘talking therapy’, although this is not the case worldwide. However, some therapy modality approaches that involve your body (from body-oriented psychotherapy to alternative wellbeing and complementary approaches like reiki and acupuncture) use the word ‘therapy’ as opposed to ‘counselling’.

In standard (and easier) terms, counselling usually refers to a brief treatment that centres around the individual’s behaviour patterns. Psychotherapy usually focuses on working with clients for longer-term treatment and draws from insight into the individual’s emotional problems and difficulties. In most practices, they usually fall under the term ‘therapy’ as both terms are a type of therapy in their own right.

What Is the difference between a counsellor and a therapist?: Some counsellors and therapists practice one specific type of therapy, while others combine approaches depending on your specific needs and usually just focus on a current issue that is affecting the client. But, there can also be some circumstances that overlap, where counselling can form a part of a longer psychotherapy programme.

In the United Kingdom, counselling and psychotherapy are not regulated by the government. Usually, becoming a registered psychotherapist (therapist) in the UK requires a related post-graduate level over a four to five-year period in order to practice, whereas in counselling this can be achieved in as little as two years at the further education level.

Not all types of therapy modalities are right for everyone. It may take some trial and error before you find the right kind of talking therapy (or counselling) that suits you, and, more importantly, the therapist (or counsellor) who suits you. Some people believe that the unique relationship between you and your therapist/counsellor is more important than the type of therapy you choose, and it might take several attempts before you find the right therapist for you.

So Why should I seek therapy and counselling?: If you’re new to this world then the first steps can sometimes be the most difficult. Therapy can be a very effective treatment for a whole range of personal problems covering areas from physical and emotional problems, and different types of behavioural disorders, to human sexuality issues and a host of wellbeing therapy techniques.

It’s a very common misunderstanding that most people, new to this type of help, believe that they need to be suffering from “mental illness” or serious “psychological problems” in order for therapy and counselling to be appropriate and work for them. This is a misconception, anyone can benefit from therapy when it comes to helping you deal with your personal feelings and problems.

So back to the first question, “what is therapy and counselling?” We hope that after reading this you may now have some more insight into what talking therapy and counselling is all about?

However, if you feel like you still need some more help in your decision about therapy and counselling then get in touch with us using the form at the bottom of this page (‘Can I Contact You For Advice About Therapy?’) and a trained therapist will guide you through the process. Or, alternatively, take a look at the current therapists working at our practice here.

What Can Therapy & Counselling Can Help With?

There are many different types of therapy approaches for specific client issues, at HQ Therapy Rooms we offer a range of different therapies to suit the client’s individual needs. Most therapy modalities usually accommodate individual therapy, couples therapy, group therapy and family therapy clients.

Therapy and counselling provide a safe space for you to talk about your issues with a trained professional. Within those parameters, there is a huge variety of approaches. Some focus on your current feelings, while others delve into your past.

Some focus on you as a unique individual, and some use models and archetypes to help you understand situations in your life. Below are some of the most common reasons why most people seek therapy and counselling:

Related Therapy & Counselling Approaches Offered At HQ Therapy

Many people can benefit from therapy and counselling. Your therapist/counsellor can help you work through a wide range of problems and goals together and help you attain a stronger, healthier sense of self, as well as access and understand your feelings to help gain a sense of meaning in life.

Choosing the right practitioner is an important decision for you and it is important that you work with the right practitioner and that both feel comfortable working together forming a collaborative process with both client and therapist as equals.

These are some of the types of therapy modalities we use at HQ Therapy that are closely related to the therapy and counselling we offer our clients.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Therapy & Counselling for me?

Any problem you have that is causing you concern, anxiety or distress is a valid and appropriate reason to reach out and talk to a therapist about it. Far from something to be ashamed of, acknowledging your vulnerability and asking for help is a sign of maturity and strength.

If you feel that you have a desire and are committed to making changes in your life in order to overcome your current problems and achieve more long-term satisfaction, psychological wellbeing and personal fulfilment, then you are ready to seek therapy. We are here to help you work through a wide range of therapy issues that might be troubling you.

Often therapists offer an introductory session. This is an opportunity for both therapist and client to decide if they would like to work together. If you are not sure about the first therapist you see, it is better to arrange to see another. You may want to speak on the phone or arrange initial appointments with several therapists to help you decide.

Here are some of the key problems that our clients often seek help with us for:

Major life events & life changes
A divorce or break-up, a financial crisis, serious health issues or an accident, dealing with mid-life crisis, or ageing concerns.

Depression & Anxiety
Lack of motivation, struggling to get out of bed, feeling like your life has no meaning, feeling that the things that used to bring you joy now seem insignificant, feeling suicidal, feeling nervous or panicky, fears or phobias, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

Ranging from feelings of irritation to rage; experienced as unmanageable because its uncontrollable, confusing, pervading, ever present, explosive.

Blended family issues
The challenges of step children, sibling rivalry, custody battles, family and work conflicts and financial concerns.

Parenting Issues
Bullying or other problems at school, anti-social behaviour, excessive screen time, setting boundaries, communicating effectively, discipline, dealing with body image issues, self-harm, low self-esteem and confidence, ADHD, eating disorders, and gender identity issues.

Substance abuse & Addiction
Common addictions include smoking, gambling, alcohol, drugs, codependency, sex and love. Addiction can include anything with which we have a formed a compulsive habit.

Bereavement, grief & loss
The loss of a spouse, child or other family member, a friend, or pet. Major life changes can also cause feelings of grief for example moving or a changing jobs.

Eating Disorders
Anorexia, bulimia, binge eating disorder. Food can be used as a way to cope with stress or to feel in control.

Low self esteem
Poor self image and lack of assertiveness generating feelings of sadness, guilt, shame, frustration or anger.

A deeply distressing or disturbing event. This can be one-off occurrence or a series of several experiences, small or large, that have overwhelmed a persons ability to cope.

Will Information About Me Be Safe & Secure?

It is quite normal to be hesitant when it comes to sharing private and intimate information about yourself with a stranger. You may fear that you will receive judgment from your therapist, or that your therapist will share your details with others.

HQ Therapy Rooms takes your privacy and confidentiality very seriously. Our therapists are required to keep everything said in therapy sessions between you, just like your doctor is required to keep your records private.

For therapy to be effective, there must be unconditional trust built between you and your therapist, and this relies on a shared understanding of confidentiality. It applies to the outside world as well: it is standard practice for therapists not to acknowledge their clients if they run into them outside of the therapy rooms in order to help protect their client’s confidentiality. Read our full privacy policy for more information.

Can I Contact You For Advice About Getting Therapy?

Talking about your thoughts and feelings with a supportive therapist can often make you feel better and help you face your problems. It feels good to be listened to and to know that someone cares about you and wants to help. It is important that you find a therapist with whom you feel comfortable and can build a trusting relationship to help you make positive changes in your life.

But how do you know what type of therapy is right for you? Taking the first steps in finding the right therapist can be the biggest hurdle for newcomers, so we have made it easy. Simply fill out the form below in confidence, and one of our fully qualified referral therapists can work with you to make sure you connect with the right practitioner and receive the correct therapy and counselling services you require.

Our practitioners deal with a wide range of therapy issues using different therapy modalities for the clients we work with. We also cater for people who are beset with financial difficulties, offering them services ranging from low-cost therapy and reduced rate therapy, to working with seasoned, qualified and accredited talking therapists.