Free Health Resources
In an emergency please contact your GP and ask for an emergency appointment. The NHS 24 service provides urgent health advice, when your GP practice is closed (phone 111.) Alternatively present at any Accident and Emergency (A&E) department and ask for a mental health assessment. If you think that your or someone else's life is at risk you should phone 999 immediately.
FACE COVID (2020) by Dr Russ Harris. Brief, excellent, animation on how to tolerate the uncertainty surrounding the covid-19 pandemic. One of a series of free animated videos on happiness myths, mindfulness and identifying values. Simple and clear.
23 & 1/2 hours & The single most important thing you can do to deal with stress (a cognitive approach) animations (2011) by Dr Mike Evans. Direct and accessible visual arguments on how we can improve our health in 30 minutes per day. One of a series of white board health animations.
The School of Life (2020) Youtube channel featuring hundreds of animations to help people cope with life including psycho dynamic approaches. Highly recommended.
Mental health recovery (2019) by the Scottish Recovery Network. Simple animation of what mental health recovery might mean for you.
Nuggets (2014) by filmbilder. Brilliant animation visualising a process of addiction.
10 warning signs of gas lighting (2020) by PsychtoGo. Calm and clear animation how we might be manipulated by psychological means into doubting our own sanity. One of a series of animated practical psychology videos from the PsychtoGo Youtube channel.
Healthy intimacy & sexuality
Tea and consent (2015) by Thames valley police. Wonderfully simple animation to understand consent in intimate relationships.
NHS audio guides (2020) provide advice on anxiety, depression and more.
Sometimes (2016) by Akala. Inspirational song detailing how we keep going when we think we have had enough (parental advisory explicit content.)
Mentalisation (2020) by Peter Fonagy. Audio interview on how we can all help each other by acknowledging, with someone else, our thoughts, feelings and desires, as well as experiencing them.
Seriously....The upsides of anxiety (2019) by Andrew Hussey. Gentle audio of how anxiety might help and often hinders us.
The 1980s show helping us feel better (2020) BBC radio programme. How painting instruction has a calming content which can ease anxiety, reduce stress and help you get to sleep.
The morality of anger (2019) Radio programme the moral maze by Michael Buerk. Unpicks the uses and abuses of this emotion from a moral perspective.
Living with BPD (Borderline Personality Disorder) (2019) BBC Radio1. Two personal accounts their relationship patterns. Warm and real.
A brief history of lust (2017) by Joe Queenan. Fun and exciting audio.
Interview with Simon Wessely (2017.) Places some of the controversy regarding his work with ME/CFS in context.
ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder)
ADHD and me (2020) by Saeedeh Hashemi. Explores the upsides of ADHD for individuals and society.
What is Psychotherapy? (2002) by Babara Myers, BBC World service. Audio description of what therapy can be. The first of four programmes which include the history of therapy, training to become a psychotherapist and trauma work in therapy. A good enough introduction.
Treating violent offenders (2020) by Gwen Adshead. Thoughtful audio interview considering how therapy could help make society less violent.
The Psychology of Crowds (2020) by Stephen Reicher. Audio interview describing how a crowd can have social identity, limits and power.
Making music during Covid 19 (2020) Advice and links to online music activity.
How to make stress your friend (2013) Ted talk by Kelly McGonigal, 'Changing how you think about stress can make you healthier. Viewing it as an adaptive response to help you perform. Stress can make us social and being social when we feel stressed makes us more resilient to it.
A conversation with Jacqui Dyer (2018) by BPS official. Suggests we 'be part of the healing.' Inspirational talk on how we can change. 'A lot of the time anger gets in the way of doing anything.'
Depression the secret we share (2013) by Andrew Soloman. Compelling video account of the lived experience of depression. Suggests 'our needs are our greatest assets.'
Video 8 relaxation tips from Mind.
All aboard the sleigh ride BBC (2015). Super relaxing viewing at a different pace. Slow TV at its best.
Death, Dying & Suicide
Life after Suicide (2019) by Angela Samata. Moving documentary about how people cope after someone they love commits suicide.
What really matters at the end of life (2015) Ted talk by Jay Miller. We all need something to wake us up to our mortality. This might be it.
We need a heroic narrative for death (2013) Ted talk by Amanda Bennett. Suggests we consider a 'good' death as an achievement. Poignant and moving.
Things not to say (2020) BBC 3 series of ninety videos of different groups of peoples' experiences with stereotypes. Funny and insightful.
The power of vulnerability (2013) Ted talk by Brene Brown. Beautiful description of how communicating our vulnerability deepens our relationships. If you only watch one ted talk this is the one.
Why you should talk to strangers (2016) TED talk by Kio Stark.The surprising mental health benefits of communicating with people we don't already know.
How great leaders inspire action (2014) Ted talk by Simon Sinek. Explains how our passion can motivate other people to change their lives.
8 things women with autism want you to know (2018) by Iris. Clear accounts of living with autism.
Help me love my baby (2007) by Channel 4. Documentary following a mother as she attempts to repair and revive the maternal bond with her baby. A psychodynamic approach.
The drama triangle (2017) by Karen Solt Short video explaining how we can see ourselves, and other people, as simply victims, rescuers or persecutors. Rather than complex individuals.
Healthy intimacy & sexuality
The wheel of consent (2020) a series of videos by Betty Martin. Learn to distinguish between the roles of allowing, accepting, taking and serving in touch.
10 things you didn't know about orgasm Ted talk (2009) by Mary Roach. Fun and educational talk about healthy sexual functioning (warning contains adult themes.)
Trauma is irreversible (2015) by Sasha Neulinger. Moving video description of one person coming to terms with being sexually abused as a child.
Eating with my ex (2020) Watch how fifty different couples negotiate the end of real intimate relationships. Compelling and life affirming.
The price of shame (2015) by Monica Lewinsky. Describes how we can endure shame and recover from our public mistakes.
3 stages of Recovery in ME/CFS (2018) by Jess Thompson. Interesting take on how people recover from post viral states.
Chronic Fatigue Cutting through the BS (2017) by Dr Martin Rutherford. Video of a medical perspective on ME/CFS. Helped me understand what might be happening to my body.
Why you should try therapy yesterday (2019) Ted talk by Dr Emily Anhalt. A personal perspective on the upsides of therapy. Accessible and emotional.
Enactment and the theory of the third (2016) by Jessica Benjamin. Thoughtful talk about how we might move on from our traumatic experiences with the help of another person.
Black Psychoanalysts speak (2020) Fascinating video accounts of race while being a therapist.
Sarcasmaholics anonymous (2014) comedy sketch about struggling in groups of sarcastic people.
How to start a movement (2010) by Derek Sivers. Stunning social psychology in action.
NHS inform (2020). Online self help guides to depression, anxiety, social anxiety, chronic pain and other symptoms. Straightforward summaries of symptoms, possible causes and treatments for each condition, including what you can do to help yourself. A good start to understanding what you may be experiencing.
A guide to emotions (2020) by Psychology tools. Straightforward information about the purpose of emotions and how they might become a problem. A cognitive and behavioural perspective.
Mind over mood (1995) by Dennis Greenberger & Christine Padesky. A book and website which uses cognitive and behavioural techniques (CBT) to help better control our emotions. A structured tool kit.
Feel the fear and do it anyway (2019) by Susan Jeffers. A book and website that looks at the role of fear in maintaining anxiety. Direct and straightforward.
An evil cradling (1991) by Brian Keenan. Autobiographical account of being a hostage in Beruit. 'From horror has come something wonderful.' Free 39 page preview.
Families and How to Survive Them (1984) by Robyn Skinner & John Cleese. Easily read description of how we might fall in love and develop from babies to adolescents to adults. A psycho dynamic perspective.
Stop walking on eggshells (2010) by Paul Mason and Randi Kreger. A practical guide to surviving problematic relationships.
Reinventing your life (1994) by Jeffery Young and Janet Klosko. A stimulating self help book based on a schema therapy approach to personal change.
The history boys (2004) by Alan Bennett. Brilliant play and film about adolescence, education and how we can pass it on. Free reviews and film trailers.
The wisdom of psychopaths (2003) by Kevin Dutton. Great take on how different capabilities thrive in different roles and fail in others. A curve ball. Free review.
Recovering from M.E./CFS A guide to self empowerment (1993) by William Collinge. A positive and psychological plan for improving health. Download for free.
Better recovery from viral illness (2008) by Dr Darrell Ho Yen. A practical and easily read approach to recovery from post viral fatigue. Free review.
Action for ME (2020) an excellent free booklet on pacing. Download for free.
Death, dying and Suicide
The rise and fall of the five stages of grief (2020.) Article detailing the usefulness and drawbacks of this stage theory of grief. Sobering.
Mummy est morte (2020) by Christopher De Bellaigue. Beautiful diary about coming to terms with a parents suicide.
An introduction to object relations (2008) by Lavinia Gomez. A wonderful reader on our need for relationships. A great start to understanding this human process. Free reviews.
The gift of therapy (2001) by Irving Yalom. A practical description of what can happen in therapy. Download it for free.
Beyond the doer and the done to (2017) by Jessica Benjamin. The best description I have found of how the therapist and client can create a therapeutic experience together. Free reviews.
Between therapist and client (2000) by Michael Khan. Excellent overview of why insight might not be enough and how the relationship is the therapy. Free review.
Five benefits of group therapy (2018) Article detailing the upsides of having therapy alongside other people.
What happens when you have an affair with your therapist? (2020.) Article detailing the harm associated with breaching professional boundaries in this way.
My scientific publications
Training Day Outline: Practicing Co Productive Relationships (2016) Private Paper - Social Science Research Network.
(2013) Private Paper - Social Science Research Network.
Inherently good? A systematic review of qualitative and quantitative evidence regarding advocacy intervention outcomes (2013) Scholarly Paper - Social Sciences Research Network (with Dr Michelle O'Shea.)
(2013) Scholarly Paper - Social Science Research Network (with Dr Noelle Robertson.)
(2012) Division of Clinical Psychology (DCP) Scotland Newsletter, 6, 11-14
Institutionally based health care workers' exposure to traumatogenic events: systematic review of PTSD presentation (2010 ) Journal of Traumatic Stress.23(3):417-20 (with Dr Noelle Robertson.)
Mental Health, Housing and Financial Guide for Veterans (2020) https://businesscostsaver.co.uk/guide-for-veterans/
Summaries, or complete versions, of all these resources can be found free online and/or borrowed free from your local library. For more ideas, the reading well website provides, an exhaustive catalogue of potentially helpful reading.
Apps, Podcasts, Fora & Insights
Smiling mind non profit meditation free app designed by psychologists.
Calm Guided meditation to aid sleep and relaxation (free 7 day trial.)
Head space Free introductory guided mindfulness and meditation course.
Catch it Structured exercises to help with depression and anxiety. Invites users to catch, check, and change their experiences.
CBT i Coach From the US department of veterans affairs, offers structured guidance on how to improve your sleep.
NHS approved mental health apps most of which are free.
Project implicit A Harvard university project which let us find out our implicit associations. Great for tapping into your unconscious beliefs and then acknowledging them without blame.
Pop culture therapists how mental health is represented in popular culture.
Hunt for the wilder people by Boo Newns (clinical psychologist.) Looks at film and TV portrayals of mental health.
Elefriends forum a safe, supportive online community from the charity Mind.
OPEN Learn. Over 900+ free courses, articles, audio, and video resources from The Open University. A brilliant way to learn more about health and relationships.
Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) are free online courses available for anyone, anytime, including ones on psychology and mental health. EDx (founded by Harvard and MIT,) Coursea (Princeton, UCL and Standford) or Futurelearn (University of Roehampton.)
Breathing space. A free mental health helpline in Scotland. Phone 0800 83 85 87, Weekdays: Monday-Thursday 6pm to 2am Weekends: Friday 6pm-Monday 6am.
Cruse Bereavement Care. Phone 0808 808 1677, Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm.
Anxiety UK. A charity providing support if you have been diagnosed with an anxiety condition. Phone 03444 775774, Monday to Friday, 9.30am to 5.30pm.
Alzheimer's Society. Provides information on dementia, phone 0300 222 1122, Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm and 10am to 4pm on weekends.
Stop it Now. Charity providing practical help to stop childhood sexual abuse and help people recover from it. Phone 0808 1000 900.
NSPCC. Children's charity dedicated to ending child abuse and child cruelty. Phone 0800 1111 (Childline for children, 24 hr) or 0808 800 5000 (for adults concerned about a child, 24 hr.)
Refuge. Advice on dealing with domestic violence. Phone 0808 2000 247, 24 hr.
National Domestic Abuse and Forced Marriage Helpline. For women experiencing domestic violence, their family, friends, colleagues and others calling on their behalf. Phone 0800 027 1234, 24 hr.
Rape Crisis Scotland. Provides a national rape crisis helpline for anyone affected by sexual violence Phone 0808 801 0302, 18:00 – 00:00.
Do you have any suggestions of free helpful health resources?
Please let me know here and I can add them to the list. Thanks.