Coaching, Counseling and Therapy

There is a difference between coaching, counseling and therapy although the terms are often used interchangeably, which contributes to the confusion about which professional to pick. Additionally, there are many approaches to psychotherapy, or talk therapy, from which mental health professionals draw their particular treatment practices, skills and styles. Depending on where you are in your journey, you may find tremendous benefits from working with one or more of these helping professionals as part of your program of growth and development. 

Counseling usually involves talking with a trained counselor,  where the counselor helps the client understand and solve specific problems, cope with mental or emotional stressors, and/or find solutions to specific and immediate problems, such as learn positive communication skills to improve relationships, and is usually more short-term than therapy.

Therapy often involves talking with a licensed therapist and focuses on a broader range of issues regarding past and present situations, understanding  a mental health condition and how to manage its symptoms, while helping the client gain increased awareness and understanding of moods, emotions, beliefs, values and patterns of behavior and thinking which affect how they interact with others, addressing the impact on daily life, and promoting healing from a painful past or finding meaning in being diagnosed with a serious illness such as cancer or diabetes.

The professions of psychologist, psychotherapist/therapist and some counselors are licensed by the state in which they work. The training required, ethics and scope of their practice are contained in state regulations and professional organizations, such as American Psychological Association for psychologists, National Association of Social Workers for licensed clinical social workers, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapists and Licensed Professional (Clinical) Counselors. Not all states require everyone who calls themselves a counselor to have specialized or specific training or be licensed.  There are financial counselors, school counselors, pastoral counselors, marriage counselors, most of which are not trained to deal with intense emotional and mental health issues.

Coaches also are not currently required to to have specific training and are not currently regulated or licensed by any state in the U.S. Many coaches choose to be trained and certified as professional coaches by the schools they attend and by national/international certification organizations, such as International Coaching Federation (ICF). Be sure to check the credentials and training of any professional you are considering to work with.

Coaching is a holistic practice that requires an understanding of, and compassion for all areas of a person's life and how vital wellness is to overall success in life. (

"Health and Wellness Coaches partner with clients seeking self-directed, lasting changes, aligned with their values, which promote health and wellness and , thereby, enhance well-being. In the course of their work, health and wellness coaches display unconditional positive regard for their clients and a belief in their capacity for change, and honoring that each client is an expert on his/her life, while ensuring that all interactions are respectful and non-judgmental." (

Coaching is a good choice for individuals:  

  • who have been diagnosed with a mental illness (depression, anxiety, PTSD, etc.) but it is not so severe that it prevents from functioning in most areas of life, or
  • who are not currently severely disabled by a mental illness, although may have been in the past
  • who prefer to focus on wellness instead of illness

Individual or group coaching, with optional equine-assisted activities or guided community interaction is perfect for these individuals.

I have a masters level degree in Clinical Social Work and currently licensed in both Georgia and Kentucky as a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW). I also am certified as a Health and Wellness Coach in the Wellness Inventory and Quantum Coaching methods with two practicums and hundreds of hours coaching with clients. I have maintained a private practice as a psychotherapist (since 2000) and health and wellness coach (since 2013) while also working for Humana Military (since 2011) as a Disease Manager and Behavioral Health Clinical Advisor. In my private practice, I have specialized in providing mental/behavioral health services to individuals affected by trauma, anxiety and depression. For a complete list of areas of my clinical and coaching experience, see You're in the Right Place!

Coming soon...success stories


Mona Cattan, LCSW

Psychotherapist |  Wellness Coach

Mona Cattan is an LCSW, trained both as a therapist and as a holistic wellness coach.

With a focus on childhood and adult physical, sexual and emotional abuse, trauma/PTSD, anxiety/panic disorders, depression/mood disorders, addictions and eating disorders, ADHD, mental/behavioral health and general well-being,  Mona Cattan employs a refreshingly new and proven approach to trauma care.

She uses a synergistic and whole-person approach, employing a variety of treatment techniques based on individual/situational needs of the client, including CBT (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy) and EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing), DBT (Dialectical Behavioral Therapy), and PET (Prolonged Exposure Therapy).

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