Have you ever had a client say something like, “I can’t put my finger on it” or “I’m not sure how to describe it” with regards to emotions? Well this is when I usually pull out this visual feelings wheel!

These wheels are one of my most favorite visuals to have in sessions for children, tweens, teens, and adults. I most often use them with my older clients as it opens up a really wonderful conversation about how many emotions there really are and builds emotional literacy.

Tweens and teens can quickly learn that there are so many more emotions beyond the basics and how connected emotions are.

Beyond being a supportive tool, you can use this visual as a jumping off point for many creative and expressive interventions including:

  • Draw out some of the emotions
  • Making 6 different characters for the 6 major emotions
  • Act our their reactions from their old reactions and practice new reactions
  • Create or find music to go along with each color section of the wheel
  • And more!

How do you use feelings wheels in sessions? Feel free to drop me a comment below!


  1. I discovered the feelings wheel a few months ago when I was preparing a presentation to explain how different social situation are affected by my brain Injury. Developing a greater literacy for terms to name emotions was helpful for me. It also made me recognize while presenting my challenges that some people recognize only a limited range of emotions. A person I would characterise as NPD couldn’t recognize emotions related to anger. Couldn’t distinguish between frustration, exasperation, annoyance and different degrees of emotion when our will is resisted, as an example.
    This made me realize partially why this person couldn’t understand the nature of the TBI challenges is was trying to explain.

    1. Thank you for sharing your insight! I’m so glad that you found this months ago and found it helpful. It’s one of my favorite resources and I’m so glad it can be helpful to others!

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