You’re going through a divorce and feel like you could use some professional support (most feel the same). But with so many options out there, how do you know who to turn to?
Coaches, therapists and psychologists are professionals who work with individuals to help them achieve personal and professional growth, but they have different approaches, qualifications, and focuses.
The good news is there are professionals trained and experienced to help you work through any challenging life transitions. The bad news is the titles can be confusing.
So here’s a quick guide to help you understand the distinctions so you can find the expertise that matches your needs. Whether you want strategies to adjust to a new normal, tools to process emotions, or advice to co-parent peacefully, whatever your needs there are trained and experienced professional available to assist you.
Defining Roles: What Do Coaches, Therapists, Counselors and Psychologists Do?
Coaches, therapists, counsellors, and psychologists have some overlap in what they do, but there are key differences in their roles and qualifications.
Coaches primarily focus on helping clients set and achieve personal or professional goals, improve their performance, and develop skills and strategies for success.
Coaches generally do not provide therapy or diagnose mental health conditions.
A coach helps you set and achieve goals to improve your life and performance. They use encouragement, advice and other various techniques to motivate you and help you achieve those goals.
- Goal focussed
- Future focussed
- Outcome focussed
While some coaches have formal training in fields like psychology or counselling it is not a requirement, others may have certifications specific to coaching. Coaching certifications vary widely in terms of requirements and rigor.
Coaches often follow ethical guidelines set forth by coaching associations, but these may not be as standardized or regulated as those for psychologists, and they are not obligatory.
Coaching is a relatively unregulated field, and there is no standardized licensing or oversight in many jurisdictions. However, there are various coaching associations that provide certifications and ethical guidelines for coaches.
Therapist and Counsellors
A “Therapist” is a broad term that can encompass a range of professionals from various backgrounds, including psychologists, social workers, counsellors, and marriage and family therapists.
Therapists may have different educational and licensing requirements based on their specific field and the services they provide. Not all therapists are psychologists, but all psychologists are considered therapists in the sense that they provide therapy.
A therapist or counsellor provides counseling and treatment for mental health conditions or life issues. They have at least a master’s degree and are licensed or certified. Therapists use talk therapy and other treatments to help you gain insight into problems, change behaviors and coping strategies.
- A broad term that encompasses psychologist
- Not all therapists are psychologists
- All psychologists are considered therapists
Therapists typically hold advanced degrees in fields such as psychology, counseling, social work, or psychiatry. They are licensed to practice in their respective jurisdictions and have extensive training in clinical assessment, diagnosis, and evidence-based therapeutic interventions. Therapists are qualified to treat mental health disorders.
Therapists adhere to strict ethical guidelines and codes of conduct established by professional organizations and licensing boards to ensure client well-being and confidentiality.
Therapists are subject to state or national licensing boards and regulatory bodies that oversee their practice and ensure that they meet professional standards.
Psychologists typically work with individuals who are dealing with specific psychological issues, such as anxiety, depression, trauma, or relationship problems.
They help clients understand and manage their emotions and behaviors.
- Highly educated
- Past focussed
- All psychologists are also considered therapists
Psychologists typically hold advanced degrees (such as a Ph.D. or Psy.D.) in psychology and are licensed to practice in their respective jurisdictions. They undergo extensive training in psychological assessment, diagnosis, and therapy.
Psychologists adhere to strict ethical guidelines and codes of conduct established by professional organizations and licensing boards to ensure the well-being and confidentiality of their clients.
Psychologists are subject to state or national licensing boards and regulatory bodies that oversee their practice and ensure that they meet professional standards.
Find your divorce professional
Divorce Club have the largest online directory of divorce professionals so that you have easy access to the expertise that you need. This includes Psychologists, Therapists, Coaches, Mediators, Solicitors, Estate assessors, even Private Investigators.
It’s normal to feel overwhelmed by the challenges of divorce. The good news is, there are professionals out there with a wide variety of expertise, qualification and approach who can help guide you through this life transition.
Whether you choose to work with a coach, therapist, counselor or psychologist, find someone you connect with and trust. Talk to them about what you’re going through and set some goals to work towards. Even small steps can help build your confidence and resilience. This is your opportunity to gain a new perspective and make positive changes in your life.
You have so much amazing potential and there are brighter days ahead! Stay strong, keep putting one foot in front of the other, and don’t be afraid to ask for help.
You’ve got this!