EDINBURGH PSYCHOTHERAPIST PSYCHOLOGIST AND PHILOSOPHICAL COUNSELLOR  

 

HARRIS PAPACHRISTOPOULOS


Life 

Born in a historical and exquisitely beautiful part of south-west Greece, I was fortunate to grow up on an unspoilt  organic farm. I spent my weekends on the farm as a shepherd, wandering for countless hours under the vast and beautiful blue sky, and crossing rivers and luscious fir tree forests with my goats, dogs and horses. This was a formative experience that cultivated, since an early age, a strong connection and a deep sense of wonder and appreciation for nature and the more-than-human world. Curiosity, inquisitiveness and a thirst for knowledge have always been qualities that characterised me. Having access to an extensive family library, that was filled with perennial and seminal works of philosophy, psychology and spirituality, gave me the opportunity to educate myself to the worlds of knowledge and wisdom. This education helped me to endure the despair I experienced growing up in a dysfunctional family but most importantly, it allowed me to make sense of suffering both on a personal and a collective level.

As I came of age, despite being a pacifist, compulsory conscription meant that I was forced to serve in the army. As a result of political circumstances, soon after I was sent to a war zone, which unfortunately resulted in me returning to civilian life traumatised with anxiety and stress. From this point onwards I had to face another battle; to heal myself. This battle turned into a journey of healing and soul searching. A journey that took me to many different places, as I travelled around the world to meet and learn from inspirational healers and teachers from various healing and spiritual practices such as yoga, meditation and homeopathy. Healing myself proved to be a source of inspiration to use my knowledge to help others on their healing journeys. This led me to pursue formal academic education in psychology, psychotherapy and most importantly in philosophy, which I consider as the main practice that can help humans flourish.

These days I live a simple and contemplative life based mainly in Edinburgh (U.K.). Nature continues to be an inspiration and a source of sublime beauty and wisdom for me, hence, when I am not helping people heal and flourish, I walk and contemplate in the Scottish mountains and forests. My aspiration is to live an examined life that is aligned with nature and to remain in touch with the beauty and wisdom that surrounds me. 


Education 

My education has been extensive and pluralistic, as over the years I have aspired to study the majority of the healing and flourishing disciplines and practices. I have undertaken undergraduate studies in Psychology, post-graduate studies in Autism, Philosophy and a wide range of Psychotherapies such as: Person-Centred/Experiential Counselling and Psychotherapy, Emotion-Focused Therapy (EFT), Somatic Psychotherapy, Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Contemplative Psychotherapy (Mindfulness), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Compassion-Focused Therapy (CFT) and Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT). Additionally, I have completed postgraduate studies and achieved certification in Philosophical Counselling, by the American Philosophical Practitioners Association. For me, education is an ongoing endeavour, as I am committed to growing as a healer and facilitator of change by attending continuing professional development seminars and workshops and staying informed about recent developments and research in psychology, psychotherapy, philosophy and contemplative practices.


work

Attempting to describe my practice as "work" leaves me with feelings of ambivalence, as it fails to convey my immense passion and dedication for helping people to heal and flourish. What I do is a vocation, and I feel fortunate and deeply honoured to be in a position to help and to be of service. For the past ten years, I have had the opportunity to help hundreds of people to heal and flourish, in settings ranging from acute admission mental health wards, addiction services, suicide prevention, autism services and prisons, to organisations, institutions and businesses, where I have worked with executives and leaders to assist with strategy, planning and workplace well-being. 

A few years ago, I created my private practice, where I offer counselling, psychotherapy and coaching in Edinburgh UK. Additionally, I have established a thriving counselling, psychotherapy and coaching practice via Skype, which makes it possible to work with people from all parts of the world, including ex-pats and those who travel, or those who find it difficult to have face-to-face therapy. I also travel often to London, New York, Los Angeles, Berlin and Amsterdam, where I work with Skype clients that have been engaged in long-term psychotherapy or philosophical coaching. Periodically, I organise and facilitate retreats in beautiful natural settings, such as the Scottish Highlands and the Mediterranean.

Another important area of my service is in the realm of intellectual activism, where I endeavour to engage and produce action-oriented, scholarly research to inform and shape social change initiatives and to effect change on a tangible level in the real world. An area that I feel particularly passionate about is that of environmental ethics, where I aspire to address issues related to ecological degradation and animal rights and challenge the human-centric post-modern perspective.


Memberships  

I am a member of the British Psychological Society (BPS), the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) and the American Philosophical Practitioners Association (APPA). My work is deeply grounded in the ethics of care, respect, safety and confidentiality, which is embedded within the code of ethics and conduct of the above organisations. My practice is also insured and regularly supervised as per the requirements of BACP. 

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