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‘The Growing Life’ is birthed out of my desire to add value, see lives transformed’

By Guardian Nigeria
21 April 2022   |   3:50 am
I have always wanted to be more, have more, and do more. I am a firm believer that our lives should be progressive and not stagnant or regressive.

Kate Onakomaiya is an Executive Director and President’s Advisory Council member with The John Maxwell Team. She is the author of Growing Life. She is the founder and lead Coach at Exponential Growth Academy Ltd, a coaching, Leadership development and training organization in Nigeria and co-founder of the Blooming Ladies Cooperative, Canada. As a Professional Speaker, Onakomaiya delivers inspirational talks, keynotes, leadership and personal growth messages, to audiences across the world both virtually and in-person. She has shared the stage with John C Maxwell as she introduced him to an audience of over 3000 coaches, speakers and trainers. She has served on Transformational Leadership missions to Paraguay and Costa Rica alongside The John Maxwell Leadership Foundation. In this interview, Onakomaiya shares the idea behind her debut book, The Growing Life

What influenced the book, The Growing Life?
I have always wanted to be more, have more, and do more. I am a firm believer that our lives should be progressive and not stagnant or regressive. I also believe that growth must be intentional for it to be truly meaningful. Growth guarantees a brighter future for those who take it seriously.

The Growing Life came was birthed out of my desire to add value to people and see lives transformed through consistent and intentional growth. I want to help as many people as possible get out of a state of stagnation and live more progressive and fulfilling lives. I want to inspire those who are already on the journey of growth to keep the fire burning no matter the challenges and find support along the way.

The book is like a coaching guide. Someone who has read said, “Kate, this book should be a memoir! I am so glad I know you because I can see you on all the pages.”

So, I share my story of intentional growth and being mentored by one of the best on the subject, John C Maxwell, because I want all those who read it to be inspired to live to their fullest potential.

How important are these principles to living?
The principles I share in the book are very relevant to almost all facets of life. For example, the principle of “Believing You Are Worth It” is crucial to our everyday success in all life’s endeavors. If you don’t believe you can achieve success, you will never be a success. Faith in yourself and your calling or chosen vocation is a powerful force to spur us on to success. As a living being, you must grow. We are always seeking better and fuller expression. When we are not growing we are declining or dying. When we are not growing we are toxic and can get to a point of self-destructing. Growing brings meaning to life and makes life meaningful.

There was a time in my life when I was not growing (I share about this in the book) and this affected everything else, especially my physical and mental health. My spiritual life was also affected. You see, when we are not in a process of becoming our best, consistently striving for a better expression of who we are called to be, we start declining. That is when all sorts of negativity are bred – jealousy, envy, shame, strive, overeating, undereating, anger, and malice. We might even feel less of ourselves and begin to think our existence doesn’t even matter. Do you know that lack of growth could lead to depression ad suicide?

When we apply the principles outlined in the book, we will see more joy, fulfillment, peace, and greater performance in every area of our lives.

In a world where times are changing and economic stability is becoming a challenge, how does these principles come to play?
Great question! The world is changing by the nanosecond! One thing is certain – change! Change happens whether we like it or not. But change does not always guarantee growth. A lot of times, change happens without growth. When we are growing, we change. Our mindset changes, our perspectives change, our worldview changes, and our people view change. Applying these principles will guarantee all the different types of changes – mindset, people-view, perspective, and worldview. As I apply these principles personally, I have grown to appreciate myself more, anticipate and respond positively to change, to show more compassion and empathy towards people –especially those who are not growing consciously. My relationship with my family and friends has improved. The All In Principle especially helps us to be all-in in every area of our lives and adopt the attitude of excellence. When we are all in, we are 100% committed and leave no room for excuses of underperformance. We exceed expectations all the time. I like to think of the world as a labyrinth with many obstacles. We are stronger when we navigate the obstacles and emerge on the other side to obtain the prize. A Growing Life is a life that is always challenging self and others to reach out for more no matter the conditions and circumstances.

Let us look at it from the perspective of business. As you engage in business and strive for growth and performance, you first of all need to believe that you will succeed, and as challenges come your way, keep believing and do not give up. When your faith goes down, reach out to mentors and coaches. It is risky to get into any business without a mentor or role model or coach. Then, you have to be all in and also learn to navigate growing pains.

The principles in the Growing Life can be applied to your personal life, business, and team, as we navigate the constantly changing times.

Who should read the book?
Everyone! The book is written in plain and simple language so anyone can understand. The principles are universal and they work wherever you find yourself. So far, students have read the book, professionals have read it, coaches have read it, business owners have read it, and bankers too… The book I meant for anyone interested in becoming a better version of themselves and recognizing the importance of intentional growth as a means of unleashing their full potential and purpose.

Any more in the works?
I have so many other books in me and I am currently writing my second book on Leadership. My books will be centered on personal growth, leadership, faith, communication, and values.