What was the core ideology behind first becoming a Certified Coach and then to the core prompt
to writing this book, including the illustration collaboration?
“Grow Through It,” which benefits UNICEF’s coronavirus relief efforts, helps children realize
they have a choice during these hard times: GROW through it, or GET through it. The idea of
intentionally living each day stems from my journey of becoming a professional coach and
helping adult clients do the same thing.
Ask Powerful Questions.
The core principles of professional coaching are as simple as they are challenging. How often
was I present in conversations? I can’t even remember most names two seconds after I learn
them. How deeply do I listen… to body language, tone, rhythm? What about the power behind
my questions? Was I even asking questions?
No—I wasn’t doing any of that. Or so I was told when I hired a new team member who timed
how long I spoke in one-on-ones compared to how long she spoke. That moment of bravery on
her part sent me into a spiral of wondering if I was a terrible manager, a terrible person even.
How could I absorb so much space with no regard for the other person?
Mercifully, a friend recommended a coaching class, and that’s when my world transformed. I fell
head-over-heels in love with the skills behind coaching because of their paradoxically
challenging and straightforward quality. Maybe not paradoxical, but human. These are human
skills that come easy with intent, but I had lost that intent behind my interactions with people.
I was showing up thinking about my agenda, my wants, and my needs. It turns out most of us
approach interactions with others solely focused on ourselves. Ironically, it’s that same seed—a
lack of intent—that fuels almost all of professional coaching.
If humans could master their intent, then it wouldn’t be so hard to learn new skills, find more
fulfilling careers, lose more weight, live rich lives surrounded by people we love and who love
us back. Intent is the key to changing habits, and your life is made from your habits.
One personal revelation + one professional ICF Coaching Certification achieved, and I’m
ramping up a coaching business to put my new found passion to work for others.
Enter coronavirus. Suddenly I heard my clients, my team, my friends, my nieces, and nephews
talking about Tiger King. Then, it was more random (is it possible to be more random?)
YouTube and TikTok videos, Animal Crossing becomes a blockbuster video game, and everyone
is talking about waiting for things to get back to normal.
Pressing pause on life until things get back to normal is a trap. I love this quote from The The Lord of
“‘I wish it need not have happened in my time,’ said Frodo. ‘So do I, said Gandalf, and so do all
who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide, All you have to decide is what to
do with the time that is given to you.’”
This is our life. We are at home more, seeing fewer people face-to-face, visiting fewer places,
avoiding dinner parties and bars, all of it is our life right now. That’s hard. But we still have a
choice to make: Do we GROW through this, or do we GET through this?
What does it mean to grow through this? Now that’s a Powerful Question.
If adults can use these ideas during tough times, maybe kids can too. No school, no friends, and
watching the world worry is sure to make a profound impact. So what if we could help kids
foster a more intentional life during this time? That could serve them for their whole lives, and
maybe we can help each other GROW THROUGH IT.
ABOUT THE BOOK
GROW THROUGH IT
Written by Jay Dee
Illustrated by Jacob Chalkley, Darren Geers, Feras Khagani, Mike Shaposhnikov, Ishmam Ahmed, and Axel Schmidt
Publisher’s Synopsis: Ellen is stuck at home. There’s no school and no friends, and Mom is working all the time. It seems terrible until she learns about the choice each day offers: GET through it or GROW through it. See how starting each day with purpose and gratitude can make all the difference! Created during the CV-19 pandemic, 100% of the proceeds from sales of this book are donated to coronavirus relief efforts.
Please also take a minute to scroll down to read Bios on all the Creators.
Enter for a chance to win a copy of Grow Through It, by Jay Dee and a group of six illustrators!
One (1) grand prize winner receives:
- A paperback copy of Grow Through It.
- A $50 donation will be made in the winner’s name to UNICEF for COVID-19 relief efforts.
Nine (9) winners receive:
- A paperback copy of Grow Through It.
Giveaway begins May 25, 2020, at 12:01 A.M. MT and ends June 25, 2020, at 11:59 P.M. MT.
Per FTC guidelines, I disclose partnership with The Children’s Book Review and Jay Dee .
Jay is an author, a certified coach, and the freshly crowned video chat expert for his nieces and nephews.
As the coronavirus lockdown seemed to put life on pause, he was inspired to create a book that reminded
kids (and himself!) that even days spent sheltering in place are opportunities to grow. Jay lives in San
Francisco and is the author of the bestseller, The Night Before The Night Before Christmas. Find his other
Jacob is UX Designer based out of San Francisco, CA. His passions include music, movies, and making
sure his portfolio is 5yrs out of date. His previous achievements include runner-up for student council
president for Van Buren Elementary 1996, perfect attendance award for Plainfield Middle School in 1999,
and achieving a bowling score of 132 in 2018. He has been using his lockdown time to prepare for his
firstborn son due May 27th. He hopes to be a frontrunner for “World’s Best Dad” in 2020.
Having an interest in drawing ever since he picked up a book about how to draw Marvel
Superheroes, Feras has continued to practice illustration well into his adult life. He loves to
spend his time exploring art, books, movies, games, and YouTube essays. He’s both excited
and grateful to contribute to a project aimed at helping others in need, and prays that everyone
stays safe! He also wants to thank the brave medical experts and essential workers that are
keeping our society going in this pandemic. His work can be found under his name on
Ishmam is an illustrator, engineer, and writer based in Minneapolis, MN. He got his start as a kid
who got in trouble for doodling in the middle of science class. He’s now well-known for his
power portraits and digital paintings on ishmam.deviantart.com and recently fulfilled his long-
time dream of illustrating for a children’s book. When he’s not hammering out his next creative
project, which can eventually be found on ishmam.com, he’s reading novels in his hammock,
biking around the Minneapolis Chain of Lakes, or cooking up a curry.
Axel is an illustrator based out of the Ballard neighborhood of Seattle, WA. During the COVID-
19 lockdown, a random connection was made through an unlikely forum that presented the
opportunity to participate in this project. While never his goal nor intention for his art, many
people who viewed his work often commented that he should do illustrations for children’s
books. So he made the jump to the realm where many people felt his talents should already be.
By day, he is a Project Manager in the renewable energy world and when not working or
illustrating, he can often be found biking, hiking or camping in the great PNW trails and
mountains. His work can be seen at: www.adsillustrations.com
Mike Is an illustrator and character designer based in Moscow, Russia.
He is bringing his vision of a fantasy world to life through game, children's book or animation
projects, and creating original character designs in free time.
He is mainly active on kolgarave.deviantart.com