Doable Dose of Kimochis
School-Based Mental Health
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Color for Improved Awareness and Feeling Communication
- Print the Color Your Feelings chart for each client. There are numerous ways to use this tool to promote improved emotional vocabulary and positive communication habits.
Here are some helpful ways to get going. These activities work great in both individual and group counseling/therapy, depending on how you modify.
- Group Stories: Build feeling vocabulary and communication by creating a feeling story together. The clinician begins the story by coloring and drawing one feeling face and then begins the story using this one feeling word. “Once upon a time, there was a very excited kid.” Pass the story on for the client(s) to continue. The client(s) colors/draws a feeling and then continues the story incorporating that feeling into the story. Continue adding feelings to extend the story. As the clinician, be curious about what the client is communicating about themselves through this third-party story.
- Individual Stories: Share individual feeling stories from the week, the day, or even a recent challenging situation. The clinician goes first and colors/draws in different feelings as they tell their story (this could even be a made-up story to illustrate how to do it). I showed up at work and felt happy about the party I was going to have to wrap up my counseling group later that day. I realized I’d forgotten the popcorn at home and felt frustrated about how I’d solve the problem since I had back-to-back meetings until the party. I felt hopeful about figuring out a solution. I told a colleague about the situation, and they said they had time to run to grab the popcorn for me, so I felt grateful… Now let your client(s) share their feeling stories. Ex. I felt angry when I got to school because I had a fight with my mom. I was happy when I saw my friend. We walked to class together but were late. I felt embarrassed when my teacher called me out on that…
- Some stories will be filled with more positive feelings and some with more hard-to-have feelings. Be creative as you offer follow-up support to your clients’ stories. Your clients will feel validated by having their stories heard, and you can help clients consider ways to write/color the next chapters of their stories.