Emotion identification is an individual’s ability to be aware of affective responses that occur during varied daily interactions. Through a review of the literature, how patients often seem unclear about the relevance of “doing” therapy to “talking/feeling” therapy is documented, and then an attempt is made to show how the occupational therapy emotion identification group can reinforce the patients’ real-life connection between doing, talking, or feeling.

The basic premises formulated for establishing a method to promote emotion identification, the group format that incorporates this method, and patient responses to the method are presented.

How occupational therapy interfaces with Gestalt therapy and therapeutic community philosophies is shown and methods are described to apply the Gestalt process of one’s getting in touch with and taking ownership for both needs and feelings in the emotion identification group and in occupational therapy task groups.

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