Difference Between Counseling and Guidance

Counseling vs Guidance

Most people often interchange the words guidance and counseling. This is primarily because we are so used to the term guidance counselor from our schools. These professionals we know from childhood usually help students in their way to college, often giving them advices involving personal or educational problems as well as showcasing options for college and future careers. Guidance counselors often function to guide children and young individuals to become mature and responsible members of society by developing the person’s way of thinking and motivating them to prepare for their chosen careers and vocations.

Guidance and Counseling are both processes that are done to help solve a person’s problems in life, however the way these problems are dissected and tackled vary. The way the problems are tackled could ultimately depend on the way the person in need of advice or help may be more comfortable with.

Guidance involves listening carefully to the problems of the burdened individuals and discussing possible readymade solutions that could help solve or at least alleviate the problem discussed at hand. In this way, the person who is in dilemma can choose whether or not to accept the said solution and carry out the solution with him. Most often than not, the solutions that are given out sincerely and thus are often followed and carried out.

Counseling, on the other hand, involves a series of talking and listening, discussing the problem at hand and sharing relevant information that could help the person understand the problem and make his or her own decision or course of action. The process of counseling usually ends with the advisee having with him an insight of the problem and a more empowered self that could help the person make future decisions. This way the advisee can be more intuitive in the future and can learn to dissect and understand future problems.

Some people state that guidance is only a part of counseling wherein the act of listening to the problem and discussing solutions can be done repeatedly until the problem is well understood by the advisee and possible ways or solutions can be extracted from the repetition.

Difference between Counseling and Guidance

- Guidance is broader and comprehensive whereas counseling is in-depth, narrowing down the problem until the advisee understands his/her own problem.

- Counseling help people to understand themselves, it is an inward analysis. Alternative solutions are proposed to help understand the problem. Focus on counseling is not on solution but on understanding the problem. Adviser may be able to bring emotional change or change in feeling.

- Guidance on the other hand is more external, help a person understand alternative solutions available across him and makes him understand his personality and help him choose the right solution. Here the focus is on finding solution. The guidance may bring attitude change on the advisee.

- Guidance is generally education and career related, it can be on personal problems too, but commonly it is impersonal whereas counseling mostly on personal and social issues.

A lot of people are familiar with guidance and counseling but are often ashamed to see a counselor for guidance or attend group counseling to help them understand their problems and discuss possible solutions. It is often difficult to see solutions to problems when one is burdened and having to talk to a person with no bias or pre-judgment is a great way to cope with the obstacles in life. Guidance and counseling, therefore, are great ways to help people handle their problems themselves.

Of course, a little help will no doubt cause problems as long as the advisee is open minded and is willing to accept his or her own faults and flaws. Problems can be solved with the right amount of dedication, contemplation and understanding.