Unit 7 – Wheel of Feelings and Emotions

The Wheel of Feelings and Emotions revolves around realising and reflecting on feelings regarding a specific situation or issue and for the client to be aware about the feelings and emotions connected with the specific topic chosen for the session


Learners know how to:

  • identify different types of feelings and how to put them into words
  • help client’s define their feelings in words with the help of the Wheel


Learners are able to:

  • use the Wheel of Feelings and Emotions to support client’s in realising their own feelings regarding a situation or issue
  • motivate clients to share their feelings and emotions during the session and explore them more deeply


Learners know how to:

  • independently conduct a counselling session with the Wheel of Feelings and Emotions
  • adapt this method and session to the needs and requirements of the client
  • adjust the steps of this method according to the setting and requirements of the clients

Wheel of Feelings and Emotions

Through the Wheel of Feelings and Emotions method, the practitioner aims to support clients in becoming aware consciously of their own feelings regarding a situation, a person, a past or future event, or other issues, chosen by the client.

Through this method, the client is engaged to share their feelings by exploring their feelings one-by-one, allowing them to be more clear about their own emotions, rather than having to immediately put their feelings into words.

This method can also be used if a client wants support in expressing their own feelings and making their opinion and perspective on a specific issue more clear.

The materials

Wheel of Feelings & Emotions

The Wheel is made of wood and features a star print of different feelings and emotions on top. As its name says, the wheel can be laid down and spun around or turned to a specific feeling. Feelings featured are anger, anxiety, depression, grief, guilt, happiness, love, rage, serenity, and shame.

Process of counselling with the Wheel of Feelings and Emotions

  1. Presentation of the intervention
  2. Assessment of feelings
  3. Agreement

Step 1 – Presentation of the intervention

First, the client identifies a certain issue or topic they want to explore further, trying to realise their feelings about it. This can be something they are either not sure about or something where they want to organise their feelings to have a clearer view on what decisions they want to take.

The practitioner then adjusts the method according to the client before them. Should the client already be aware of their feelings but has a need to organise them, the practitioner can ask the client to either immediately turn the wheel to what they are feeling and explain the background or go from one emotion to the next one and explain if this is an emotion they are feeling when thinking about the topic of the session.

In case the client is not consciously aware of how they are feeling yet or has trouble naming the emotions they are connecting to the topic, the practitioner can either apply the method of going through one emotion after the other, or asks the client to spin the wheel randomly and they explore if the feeling that the wheel stops at is part of how the client feels.

If they spin it randomly but do not identify with the feeling or think this is not the only emotion they have regarding the topic, they can spin the wheel again.

Step 2 – Assessing feelings

The practitioner starts with the first feeling, asking for a quick yes or no on the question “Is this feeling connected with your issue” and moving on to the next feeling. After finishing all feelings from the wheel, the practitioner repeats all feelings that relate to the issue.

This is the first information for the client: There is always more than one feeling connected with an unclear issue.

Based on this information, the practitioner can ask the client which of the connected feelings is the most relevant, the strongest, for them. With the additional guide on feelings at hand, he can provide further explanations to the feelings, enabling them to better support the client in identifying their feelings and emotions regarding the topic.

In the “Resource” tab, you can find an additional guide for feelings and emotions, supporting the practitioner in defining and explaining the feelings.

Step 3 – Agreement for future

The practitioner shall then guide the client by advising them to think about the most relevant feeling, the next time they are confronting their issue. The client should think about ideas or solutions they can apply when they are facing the specific feeling. The practitioner can also suggest additional support methods and ideas if the client cannot think of any steps. The practitioner and the client should agree on the specific steps the client will take to confront the emotion as a finalisation of the session.

Have you completed all the content of this unit? Please take a moment to review. Done? Please proceed to Unit 8.
For any open questions, please consult the Resource tab or contact your course leader.