Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

MA - Master of Arts


Expressive Therapies


Rebecca Zarate, Ph.D., MT-BC, AVPT


Emotions have the capacity to influence the body at every level. Research studies have confirmed that emotions can be recognized from facial expressions and linked to the four zones of regulation (Ekman, 1972). The study aimed to help children identify their feelings and teach them strategies that would support them in coping with their feelings. This thesis explored ways clients can be aware of themselves and the skills needed to improve their understanding and tolerance of emotions. The method contributed to the current literature on emotion regulation and bereavement. The data collected were from several parts of written journals and analyzed for the frequency of recurring themes across the zones of regulation. The results showed three major themes of self-regulation, the four zones of regulation as a psychoeducational tool and increased awareness of emotions/feelings within self and others through facial expression and body language. The themes and techniques used in this method showed promising implications for developing self-regulation as a coping skill. The findings revealed insights into the power, strength, and vulnerability of being connected with one’s emotions and, therefore, can be used as a guide to help children to self-regulate. Future studies can be used to examine what happens by adding more coping skills to the children's toolbox.

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Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

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