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What is the difference between CBT and counselling? 


There are some similarities between counselling and CBT, and lots of people benefit from both. They both involve talking to a non-judgemental person, to help your understand your difficulties, and to find ways to make changes.

You might choose counselling over CBT when something has happened that cannot be changed, for example a bereavement. It can also be helpful when there is something you don't want to change. (like a job loss or bereavement), or when you're not sure whether or how you want something to change or you don't fully know what the problem is.

CBT may be more beneficial over counselling when you want or need to break unhelpful cycles of thinking and/or behaviour, and when you know you need to change. It explores what you can do differently to change how you feel. CBT is particularly useful as a treatment for anxiety, behaviour change and breaking vicious cycles. 

However, there is no 'list' of problems that counselling is better for than CBT and vice versa. Some people embrace the structured method of CBT over the more flexible and responsive approach of counselling, but the opposite is also true and it can come down to personal preference. It can also be the case that your counsellor or CBT therapist will reccomend a different type of therapy in the event that they do not think their model of therapy is most appropriate They also might suggest an alternative method of talking therapy once one problem has been addressed but another has emerged. 

To cut a long story short, there is no 'right' method but if you are unsure whether CBT would be helpful for you, get in touch and we can discuss it further. 

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