Chris Mertzanakis MSc, MPhil

Psychoanalytic psychotherapy

“We explore the past in order to understand and solve present-day difficulties”
Categories: Therapist

I am a UKCP registered adult psychoanalytic psychotherapist and I offer both long-term and short-term therapy. I am a full clinical member of the Institute of Group Analysis (London). For the last 20 years I have worked as a group analyst and adult psychoanalytic psychotherapist in the Psychological Services in NHS in the UK. I have provided therapy for offenders in the HM Prison Service and private secure settings. I also offer clinical consultations internationally as well as detailed psychoanalytic/psychodynamic assessments. Instead of listing a number of difficulties that you may find familiar with, I believe that relationship issues are the ones that trigger off unwanted behaviors and sometimes a variety of symptoms that I would be prepared to work through them with you analytically and get down to the roots of your unhappiness and distress. I am interested in challenging the truth and helping you develop a better emotional stability.

After working for more than 30 years in the UK National Health Service and in private institutions, I am currently based in Greece and provide therapy to individual clients internationally via Skype. I occasionally visit the UK for clinical consultations and I also offer detailed psychoanalytic/psychodynamic assessments.

Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy

Psychoanalytic therapy is a form of talking therapy which explores how the unconscious mind influences thoughts and behaviors. Its aim is to of offer insight and resolution to the person seeking therapy.

Psychoanalytic therapy typically looks at your experiences of early childhood, to see if any events have had particular impact on your life, or contributed in some way to current concerns. This form of therapy is considered a long-term choice, and sessions can continue for weeks, months or even years, depending on the depth of the concern being explored.

Psychoanalytic therapy can be used by those with a specific emotional concern, as well as those who simply want to explore and understand themselves. Understanding why we are the way we are often brings with it a sense of well-being and a strong sense of self. As psychoanalytic therapy is considered one of the more long-term therapy types, it is perhaps less useful for those seeking quick, solution-focused therapies. Psychoanalytic therapy is a gradual process that takes time, yet the results are said to be life changing.

My approach

Together, we can work to analyze and understand the reasons for today’s unhappiness and dissatisfaction with life, today’s feeling of being ‘stuck’ in our relationships with others, both individuals and groups.  These feelings are often rooted in the unconscious and are connected with old, distressing experiences that can be revisited, explained and understood. You will find the strength and ability to bring about permanent and positive change in the way you face life and relationships in future.  This experience will change you and how you see yourself and give you the freedom and space to develop emotionally.

How does psychoanalytic therapy work? 


Sessions will vary according to why you are seeking therapy, and where you are in the therapy journey, but much of the time will be spent talking freely to me in a safe and non- judgmental environment.

I will listen to your concerns and look out for patterns or events that may be significant. In this type of therapy, it is believed that our unconscious feelings and certain childhood events play a key role in mental distress.

Seeking therapy does not always mean that we looking out for things which are bad, but we do try to understand the causes behind events and experiences that may sound irrational, or are unconscious parts of ourselves.

As well as listening to you talk about your experiences and your concerns, I may use other techniques to help you understand and identify potential causes for your concerns, such as free association, therapeutic transference and interpretation.


  • Free association

Free association involves you talking about whatever comes into your mind without censoring or editing the flow of memories or ideas.  You are encouraged to speak freely to help you return to an earlier emotional state, so that we can better understand any recurrent patterns of conflict you may be experiencing.

  • Therapeutic transference

Transference relates to the way you may be transferring thoughts or feelings connected to influential figures in your life (for example your parents or siblings) onto me. While this may not happen in every case, if it does, I will discuss transference with you to help you gain further insight into the way you deal with people in your daily life.

  • Interpretation

A key element of psychoanalytic therapy is interpreting and ‘reading between the lines’. While I am likely to stay relatively quiet and allow you to talk freely, I will occasionally interject with thoughts or interpretations of the topics you discuss. I may also ask you about your dreams.


What to expect

Assessment session

After your initial contact we will arrange to have a session where I will be taking a brief history from you and asking you how things are with your life at the moment. At the same time I will be checking on your strengths and weaknesses in relation to psychoanalytic therapy and how much you can benefit from this approach. You will have the opportunity to decide if I would be the right therapist for you and ask any questions you wish and bring up any issues you are seeking advice for. We will avoid addressing any problems in depth as this will part of the future therapy, but we can make a note of this to refer back to when the time comes. We will also have the chance to talk about technicalities such as the day and time of sessions, your schedule etc. This assessment session will last around 70 minutes and is free of charge.

Therapy sessions

Sessions will vary according to why you are seeking therapy, and where you are in the therapy journey. Sessions last 50 minutes and can be up to three times per week. Depending on the number of weekly sessions you have, I would expect you to engage in therapy for not less than a year. As this is a serious commitment in your life I usually suggest an initial period of once weekly sessions with a review after the completion of the first year. The sessional fee is 60 GBP.

If you have any questions please call me on:  00306980330305 or send me an email at:


Business Hours

08:00 am to 06:00 pm
Break Time
08:00 am to 06:00 pm
Break Time
08:00 am to 06:00 pm
Break Time
08:00 am to 06:00 pm
Break Time
08:00 am to 06:00 pm
Break Time

Address Info


Doukissis Plakentias, Athens, Greece


Mob: 0030 6980330305

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