Sunday, July 22, 2012

Toothpaste--Not just for teeth!

Going off of Katie’s Kind Heart, another great activity involves toothpastes. Yes, toothpaste. Gather any toothpaste in a tube, a cup and spoon. You can begin with the Kind Heart activity, discussing with the client how the tube represents them and the toothpaste the words (ever heard of verbal vomit?!).  Or you can begin with just the supplies mentioned, whatever works! 
Have the client squeeze some paste into a cup while you identify situations where they said things they ‘wish they could take back.’ Then have them ‘take it back’ (i.e. try to put the toothpastes back into the tube with the spoon). Not so easy! Give them a couple minutes to attempt to ‘put the words back,’
This allows for great processing prompts (some ideas I've used): 
"How easy is it to put the toothpaste into the tube?"
“How can we take words/actions back?" (Can you?? Even if you get some in the tube--whats left?)
"Can you think of a time you felt like the toothpaste?"
“How can you mend relationships that have been hurt?” (How do your behaviors affect others? How can you change them? Etc).
"How can you cope?" (when you want to let it 'all fall out')

This activity provides a great visual aid for the client to 'connect the dots' of their current struggle(s)--trying to get the messy paste in a little tube--and how that correlates to their behaviors/words etc. This is a really great 'ah-ha!' activity for clients! 


  1. Great Idea! See if my husband might use this in one of his sermons.

  2. Brilliant. I am absolutely going to us next week. Thanks for sharing.
    Viona Odendaal ( psychologist )

  3. Really good idea, going to use this on my next group of young people. Visual explanations can sink in so much better.