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Six Healing Animations

At The Sleep School we believe in using animations as an effective therapeutic tool for helping people to overcome chronic insomnia. Animation provides a playful way of learning and can be a powerful platform from which to discuss even the most challenging mental and physical health issues. Here are some of the best ones on the Web, which we use on a regular basis to help Sleep School clients

1. I had a Black Dog

In collaboration with WHO to mark World Mental Health Day, writer and illustrator Matthew Johnstone tells the story of overcoming the “black dog of depression.”

2. Headstuck! What is Experiential Avoidance?

In this beautifully simple animation, career psychologist Rob Archer explains the concept of experiential avoidance, which is best summed up as follows: “Attempts to avoid thoughts, feelings, memories, physical sensations, and other internal experiences even when doing so creates harm in the long-run“.  Hayes, Strosahl and Wilson, 1999.

3. Compassion for Voices: a tale of courage and hope

A film about the compassionate approach to relating with voices, with potential for use as a therapeutic, educational, and de-stigmatising tool.
This project is a Cultural Institute at King’s project led by Dr Charlie Heriot-Maitland, Department of Psychology at King’s, in collaboration with Kate Anderson, independent animation director.

4. Letting Go of the Insomnia Struggle

In the first of The Sleep School’s five-step approach to overcoming chronic insomnia, animated case study Lynda explains how your attempts to control your sleeplessness can actually keep you awake.

5. The Unwelcome Party Guest – an Acceptance & Commitment Therapy (ACT) Metaphor

The issues of ‘experiential avoidance’ are discussed further in this great animated ACT metaphor by Joe Oliver. He highlights how rather than trying to get rid of unwanted thoughts and emotions (aka Brian), ACT is more about inviting them in, sitting with them, and learning to change your relationship with them, so that you can get on with the act of living your life.

6. Brené Brown on Empathy

What is the best way to ease someone’s pain and suffering? Dr Brené Brown reminds us that we can only create a genuine empathic connection if we are brave enough to really get in touch with our own fragilities.

You can view more of The Sleep School animations and videos on our YouTube Channel here.