Fear in a hat is a therapeutic group activity to anonymously express and comfort participants' fear.

Fear in a hat is a therapeutic group activity to anonymously express and comfort participants' fear.Expressing Fear Anonymously in Group

Set-up this activity with a sincere tone to really get the most out of it. You can keep it superficial or take it as deep as you’re wanting to go, with fear or regret or embarrassment, etc.

Finish the phrase, “In this trip/group/program, I have a fear that…” on a piece of paper. After each group member writes an answer, folds it up, and sticks it in the hat; it’s time to get started. Have one member pick out a paper and read it aloud, then they explain further what the person may be feeling. In alternative versions I’ve had them respond with empathetic statements or offer advice as if their best friend just made the disclosure. Lots of possibilities!

Topic: Anxiety, Fear
Supplies Needed: Paper, Pencil, Container/Hat
Prep Time: No Prep
Activity:Written/Discussion
Age Range:Any Age

Thoughts & Suggestions

Try phrases such as:

  • I feel hurt when…
  • I wish my parents knew…
  • I’m ashamed that…
  • I felt embarrassed when…
  • I never expected…
  • I lied about…
  • I lied because…
  • I’m not _____ enough…
  • I worry one day…
  • I love…
  • I wish they…
  • Life would be better if…
  • I don’t know what to do about…
  • I want to get along better with…
  • I hope to one day…

The anonymous style of this group allows members to express themselves more freely while also giving the reader the freedom to give advice without making it specifically pointed for an individual. Try splitting up boys and girls and seeing if they’re able to be more genuine.

Another Version Description Here