Here’s a craft that school-aged kids and even teens will enjoy. Plus, it is perfect for the chilly fall season, where nothing feels as good as curling up with a warm drink. Make an affirmations mug, and as you do so, talk about helpful and unhelpful thoughts. Discuss how negative thoughts can creep up on us and how they lead to negative feelings and negative actions (I like to use a triangle with thoughts, feelings, and behaviors written at each to the points to demonstrate how these things affect one another).
In addition to explaining how negative thoughts affect us, encourage the child/teen to come up with positive traits about themselves and positive affirmations that they can say to themselves to build confidence and positive emotions. Discuss how we can choose to say more positive things to ourselves, and how thinking in this way helps us to feel happier, more relaxed, and more confident.Provide some guidance on how the child can come up with her own affirmations to help herself feel confident and empowered.
This craft would be valuable as a middle or end-stage activity for clients struggling with feelings of depression, anxiety, being bullied, or low self-worth.
You will need:
- A plain white mug (I picked mine from Dollarama)
- Some sharpie or similar style coloured markers
- An oven
1) Make sure the mug is clean and dry.
2) Write or draw the various words and images on the mug that make the child feel good about him/herself. Some examples might be “I am smart,” “I am loving”, “Just breathe,” or “Relax”.
3) If you have access to a kitchen, you can bake the mug on site. If you don’t, send the mug home with the child and have her parents bake it there. Bake it at 350F for about half an hour.
The child can use the mug once it is completed, but it should not be put in the dishwasher. Hand wash only! Whenever the child has her favourite drink, she can remember his positive traits and the importance of choosing positive thoughts.