Often the two terms are used interchangeably, but I believe counselling and psychotherapy differ in the approach taken to address a problem or issue. Counselling is more about the “here and now”, so is appropriate when you might be experiencing a specific event which is causing stress or anxiety, for example a relationship ending or being made redundant. In this type of situation, it might be most helpful to focus on your immediate thoughts and emotions and how they are having an impact on your life at the present time.
Psychotherapy is more “in depth” and is useful when you might be struggling with difficult events from the past or when current thoughts and feelings, for example feeling depressed or anxious, don’t appear to have a specific immediate cause. The aim of psychotherapy is to enable you to feel comfortable about sharing past experiences, so that they can be safely processed and ultimately released.
As a counsellor and psychotherapist, I usually blend the two approaches together in the most meaningful way for each individual. You are unique, and my aim is to work with you in the way that is right for you.