Counselling and psychotherapy

What is the difference between counselling and psychotherapy? This is a commonly asked question, but one to which there is no straight forward answer; opinions to this question differ widely, even within the profession. Broadly speaking, counselling tends to work with everyday difficulties with living and within a shorter timeframe, whereas psychotherapy often works with deeper emotional or psychological issues and tends to be longer. Both, however, are umbrella terms for a range of talking therapies and substantially overlap in practice. Both counselling and psychotherapy are delivered by trained therapists, but the terms are not yet protected, so anyone can claim to be a counsellor or psychotherapist. This is why it is important to check that your therapist is appropriately trained; any ethically-minded therapist would be happy to provide confirmation of their qualifications and their current governing body status, and we would never be offended that you ask.

How can counselling help me?

With the help of an objective and professional therapist, counselling allows you the opportunity to explore your thoughts and feelings in a safe and supportive environment, helping you make sense of the troubling conflicts between your emotions and your behaviour, and allowing the opportunity for positive change to take place.

How often do I need to come?

You are in control. Every person and problem is unique, and the length of the contract invariably differs according to your individual needs and situation. Some people prefer to work to a short-term contract (10-12 weeks), whereas others opt for open-ended therapy during which individual progress and the point of ending is regularly reviewed, discussed and mutually agreed. However, as an ethically minded practitioner, I adhere to the Code of Ethics and Professional Practice as set forth by the BACP, and this means that I would not continue to work with you once we reach a point when you no longer need to come. Apart from this one exception, however, the contract length is ultimately up to you, and your final decision will always be supported and respected.

The counselling session

Each counselling session lasts 50 minutes, and unless otherwise agreed, will take place weekly at the same time and on the same day. Appointments can be made via phone, text or email, and payment options and the current fees are listed on the Fees page.

Finding the right therapist

Finding the right therapist is essential, and I encourage you to take as much time as you feel able to try working with different people until you find the right therapist for you. So please take some time to read through my pages, and allow some time to think about whether you feel you might want to meet for an initial consultation, where we will be able to get the chance to talk and see how well we might work together. And if you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me; I will be happy to answer any questions you may have.

© 2022 Sam Gibbons Counselling

© 2022 Sam Gibbons Counselling