The differences between Counselling and Coaching

If you're thinking about accessing my New Year Accountability Check-In offer via my Coaching Service, you may want to read this first.

Due to offering counselling, psychotherapy and coaching within my private practice, sometimes it can be confusing about what you're signing up for - so let's break it down.

A focus on the Here-and-Now

Coaching is focused on the here-and-now and not so much on your past. If you work with me for coaching, I have the capacity to help you address your barriers and stuck places as I have the relevant training, but that kind of work is not coaching.

Instead, we would work on actionable strategies for achieving your goals. I may also give you a gentle nudge and check in on you - I wouldn't do this without it being explicitly agreed in counselling.

What we would Work on

Whereas counselling and psychotherapy are helpful in developing personal and psychological well-being, looking at issues such as anxiety, depression, relationships and abuse; coaching isn't.

Coaching is about achieving your goals, setting you tasks and sharing strategies to help you. You can use coaching for personal and professional development, parenting, sport and business.

Difference in Achievements

If you work with me for counselling and psychotherapy, you will leave with increased self awareness, a deeper understanding of how your history effects your present and a better ability to manage your life.

If you work with me for coaching, you will finish with an awareness of strategies for performance, motivation and working through your barriers. You will gain a clarity of thinking for goal orientated processes and you will have more confidence in your ability.

The pace of counselling and psychotherapy is often client led due to the difficult nature of the work, but in coaching, you are contracting me to motivate you and therefore be more directive.

The Right Person for You

In both cases, for counselling and coaching, you must find the right person - choose a person that really gets you. It's important that you feel comfortable and that you get the sense in the first meeting, that you can achieve what it is you want.


I can only speak for my own practice here; I rarely work with counselling and psychotherapy clients solely by phone or Skype, but I more often than not, use Skype for coaching clients.

Rate of Change

Psychotherapy is long term work. counselling shorter, and coaching shorted still.

The issues addressed in coaching are much more straight forward than in psychotherapy and counselling, and change can often be reached in between 6-12 sessions. Sometimes counselling or psychotherapy maybe recommended to a coaching client to unlock their full potential, but I wouldn't do this work. It's important that boundaries are clear and maintained. Sometimes ad hoc or check-in sessions are arranged when the main body of work is completed; to maintain motivation and direction.

If you think coaching would be useful to help you achieve your goals, by keeping you accountable and giving the strategies you need to make it happen, you can read more about my Coaching Service here. If you'd like to read more about my New Year Accountability Check-In offer, click here and you can watch a video here; the offer is open until the end of January.