Positive Experiences Worksheet
Worksheet published on May 1st, 2023
Worksheet updated on May 7th, 2023
When working with clients who fixate on the negative it is difficult to break away from the cycles of negativity and shift focus onto good and hopeful thoughts and feelings. Therapists will often work with a client who does not acknowledge anything besides the negative in their life, which not only is detrimental to their overall health, but is also a difficult habit to break. An effective way of combatting the habit of focusing on the negative is to encourage the client to point out and reflect on positive experiences.
Positive experiences, no matter how small, can impact how a client feels. Positive thoughts, feelings, interactions with others, and events in the client’s life are worth reflecting on and internalizing. These positive experiences can also be used as tools to reinforce a client’s values, strengths, and positive qualities that may be clouded when the client is more focused on negative thoughts and feelings.
About This Worksheet
This is the Positive Experiences worksheet. This worksheet asks the client to recall positive experiences based on their values, strengths, and positive attributes. Focusing on the positive serves two major purposes when improving mental health: it forces the client to acknowledge that they have positive attributes and teaches them that they can experience positivity in their day-to-day life if they shift their focus to seek out moments that make them feel good.
The Positive Experiences worksheet can help a client learn how to manage negative thought patterns and challenge their overall negative core beliefs of themselves, their world, and their future. This worksheet is great for adolescents and adults and can be used in individual and group therapy settings.
The instructions for this exercise are simple. The client is asked to choose a positive attribute in their life from a word bank and reflect on a memory about that attribute. They can write about what the memory meant to them and what the experience taught them about their capabilities in life.
To strengthen the exercise, the therapist is encouraged to ask follow-up questions, such as “What did this experience mean to you? What does it mean about you that you experienced this attribute? When would it be helpful to remind yourself of this experience and what it taught you about yourself and your world?” Etc.