CBT, used in its purest form, is a very focused type of therapy which works to help the client make changes in their thoughts, feelings and/or behaviours to help alleviate specific problems such as with anxiety, depression, anger, OCD etc. CBT is also a time-limited therapy and has guidance based on a significant amount of research as to how many sessions are normally allocated to treating different psychological problems. Therapist and client work collaboratively on goals identified by the client using CBT tools and techniques. CBT is a present-focused therapy, meaning it tends to focus more on the issues in the here and now and how to resolve them – however it does not ignore the past, quite the opposite, the therapist will help the client make links back to past experiences to help understand how/why the current issues are a problem, but the focus will then be on resolving/working on the issues back in the present.
Person Centred Therapy or Counselling is also orientated at helping the client to make beneficial changes where required however the approach may be more open and exploratory in nature, with the direction of therapy led by the client. There may also be greater emphasis in PC Counselling in exploring the past in order to help understand what is happening in the present. PC Counselling is a very reflective approach that encourages the client to use the therapy session/space to consider, reflect and make links.