How To Guides

Banner Image

The Body Sensations Wheel

Use The Body Sensations Wheel to connect your physical sensations with your underlying emotions.

  • Uncover hidden feelings
  • Encourage rational thought through emotional labeling
  • Use physical sensations to guide emotional experiences
  • Simple somatic practice
  • Increase understanding of your body and emotions

A Step By Step Guide

  1. Identify Base Emotion Each petal on The Feelings Wheel represents a base emotion. Find the base that best represents your current emotional state.
  2. Narrow It Down Move your attention to the first row of words on your selected petal. Read through them and select the word that seems to capture your emotional state at this moment.
  3. Fine-Tune After choosing an initial word, look directly above at the two more specific variations that stem from it. Select one that best labels how you’re feeling. You may have an 'ah-ha' moment when you find the word that resonates with you. 
  4. Process With your specific emotion in mind, take the time to reflect. You might want to journal your thoughts, have a conversation with someone you trust, or bring your insights into your next therapy session for further exploration.

The research that inspired us

The Research

When we talk about anxiety or depression we often use words that explain a physical sensation: feeling empty, "my chest feels heavy", or "I'm struggling to breathe". Whether we like it or not, our bodies experience emotions just as much as our minds do. Research has shown that emotions tend to show up in specific areas of the body (Nummenmaa, Glerean, Hari & Hientanen, 2014). With this knowledge, we can use our physical sensations to guide us in our emotional experiences. Combined with the benefits of emotional labeling, The Body Sensations Wheel creates a holistic approach to connecting.

Nummenmaa, L., Glerean, E., Hari, R., & Hietanen, J. K. (2014). Bodily maps of emotions. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 111(2), 646-651.


Everyone! We believe that every person can benefit from a tangible tool to identify and express their feelings.

Emotional curiosity is valuable to people of all ages. Many of our tools can be utilized by people of any age. If you’re ready to work on emotional curiosity with younger children, we recommend using this tool together.

No, not at all! Our therapeutic tools are a great tool to use inbetween therapy sessions If you're struggling, use a directory like to find a therapist.

We love working with large organizations to bring emotional literacy tools to their clients/students. Email us at or visit our Customization page to learn more about our bulk order process.

Of course they are! Our Chief Clinical Officer is a licensed professional counselor and reviews research that is used to inspire products.