What's The Difference Between Digital Health Coaching and Talk Therapy?
Everyone’s talking about mental health and it’s now easier to find mental health support than ever before. You’re beginning to see how mental health affects your overall health and you’re now ready to invest in your own well-being. But, now that you’re ready to reap the benefits of professional support and guidance, there are just too many options available.
Are all mental health professionals the same? Is it better to connect with a psychologist digital health coach via the Naluri app, or will you stand to gain more from a one-on-one in-person or remote therapy session?
Read on to find out what the differences are and how you can use digital health coaching and talk therapy to your advantage.
Why do digital health coaching and talk therapy matter?
At its core, both digital health coaching and therapy aim to empower you to take control of your life and make it what you want it to be. They are support systems to help you achieve your goals and live your healthiest and best life — physically and mentally. Finding the right support system to help you on your life journey can make difficult changes seem easier.
What is talk therapy?
Also known as psychotherapy or counselling, talk therapy is a mental health intervention or treatment by a clinical psychologist, counsellor, or psychiatrist. It is an effective means of diagnosing and treating psychological disorders. A disorder is an ongoing, unmanaged mental health problem that causes you significant distress and compromises your daily functioning at work, in life, or in your relationships.
Therapy is structured and time-restricted i.e. 50 to 90 minutes per session over a course of weeks or months. It tends to dig deep into your past to understand aspects of your personality and perceptions. It can uncover trauma and emotional baggage and focus on healing your psyche and the parts of yourself that may not be visibly apparent to others.
Not everyone who utilises talk therapy has or will receive a diagnosis for a mental condition. Although it is a conventional therapy for people with a psychological disorder, many people who seek therapy do so to gain a sense of personal agency to make healthy choices and take action against patterns and behaviours that no longer serve their wellbeing.
What is digital health coaching?
Digital health coaching is a form of “handholding” through internal or external roadblocks that might otherwise make life changes seem more difficult. It’s not focused on pathologizing but instead is designed to increase your capacity and capabilities through goal-setting and problem-solving.
There is also less structure and it is not time-limited. Asynchronous chat makes connecting to coaches as easy as receiving a message checking in on you sporadically throughout the week to see how you’re progressing on your phone. It is a convenient, collaborative process that can also help you keep track of details that might be easy to miss or forget like the correct way to consume certain medication, the correct information when there seems to be conflicting advice, and even reminding you to practice the new habit you wish to build to achieve your goals.
How do talk therapy and digital health coaching differ?
The most obvious difference between coaching and therapy is that not all coaches are trained to diagnose or work in-depth with mental health concerns such as anxiety, depression, past trauma, and any other underlying issues. Unlike traditional talk therapy, digital health coaching can be used to affect different aspects of your health such as medical advisors, dietitians, fitness coaches, and even financial advisors who can teach financial literacy.
Can you do talk therapy and digital health coaching at the same time?
Yes! If time and resources allow, utilising both to your advantage is a great way to take care of your mental and physical health at the same time. Talk therapy can help you strengthen your mental health and you can use digital health coaching as a day-to-day support system for every aspect of your health.
Reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org for more information on how to utilise digital health coaching and therapy to become your healthiest and best self.
- Written by:
- Chloe Pharamond