Know the Differences: Psychotherapy

So far we have considered Health Coaching, Wellness Coaching, Life Coaching and Counseling. For our last blog in this series, we are going to take a look at Psychotherapy and how it compares to the rest!

While both Counseling and Psychotherapy are regulated and require specific degrees and/or licenses, Psychotherapy requires even more skill than counseling (Schimelpfening, 2020).

The differences between these two specialties can be easily compared:


  • Focus on present problems and situations
  • Specific situations or behaviors
  • Short term therapy (for a period of weeks and up to 6 months)
  • Action and behavior focused
  • Talk therapy
  • Guidance, support, and education to help people identify and find their own solutions to current problems
  • Secondary process


  • Focus on chronic or recurrent problems
  • Overall patterns, big picture oriented
  • Long term therapy, either continuous or intermittent over many years
  • Feeling and experience focused
  • May include testing (such as personality, intelligence), talk therapy, other therapies such as cognitive behavioral therapy
  • In-depth focus on internal thoughts/feelings (core issues) leading to personal growth
  • Primary process


So, how do you choose which type of to choose?

Your personal wants and needs should guide you! If you need problem-solving and direction, consider a Coach (the topic you specifically need to focus on will direct you to a Health, Wellness or Life Coach). If you need short-term, behavior-focused coping skills, Counseling might be the best choice. If your focus is on a chronic or recurrent issue where longer-term support is needed, Psychotherapy may be your answer!

There are so many options and hopefully this blog has helped you see the similarities and differences so you can choose the right direction for you!



Schimelpfening, N. (2020). Visiting a Counselor vs. Psychotherapist: Similarities, Differences, and How to Choose.


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