The main difference is the primary focus. The focus in Spiritual Direction is your spiritual journey. The main focus of counselling is the present issue/problem that is affecting you. Both deal with the concrete reality of your experience of life and both encourage deepening self-knowledge. In counselling such self-knowledge serves the purpose of dealing with the issue/problem or on-going difficult life situation. In Spiritual Direction such self-knowledge enables greater freedom to respond to the fullness of life to which God is calling you, that is, to more fully become the unique person you are created to be. With an appropriate counsellor, counselling can certainly facilitate this journey too without being the primary focus.