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GROK Card Games

I've recently fallen in love with NVC...I bought the cards to use as Christmas gifts. I have a number of friends who are either psychologists or students of Option who are enjoying learning about NVC.

My husband and two teens played with them in the car on the way to thanksgiving. I didn't think I'd be able to get my teens to play, but they did! I was thrilled that they were engaged for an hour or two!

- Beth Secosky

So, on the last day we played GROK the WORLD and it was a huge success! ...I am just beginning to see how GROK can enhance my teaching and my students’ learning!!!

- Laura Peterson

includes cards in every coaching session - includes them in packages. set up a zoom to collect testimonials

- Jules Maloney

The students at Duke really love the GROK cards! ...I use them, along with the games in the GROK facilitator's manual, to introduce NVC

- Sarah Jean Barton

I had a productive session of GROK by myself. I chose to explore an issue that is very personal and troubling to me that I haven’t felt comfortable discussing with anyone else in depth. Working with the cards by myself allowed me to express the feelings that I didn’t want to admit to anyone or even myself. I think one of the most valuable results of NVC has been the validation it has given me around my feelings and needs.

The way I approached my needs in the past was very judgmental, and I judged myself for not getting professional help and support. Now I recognize my feelings as natural occurrences and byproducts of the act of living in a complex social world and my needs as values which I hold due to my experiences and as reflections of my personal lens. The constraints and specificity of GROK provides me the space to open up myself and peer inside with the openness and lack of judgement that a stranger would have, while intimately holding myself in the process.

- Student in Christine King’s UCSC Nonviolent Communication class

I hold NVC and Grok sacred. I know it can help save and improve lives.

I live in a small town with typical small town problems such as isolation, fragmentation, high drug abuse, and crime. GROK is a great resource and I know it can help here.

After Grokking with a teacher at a local high school, she introduced the game to the Principal, VP, and school counselor. I would love to get Grok at the coffee shops. I am also going to try to introduce it to the elementary school, police, and maybe even churches.

I played Kids Grok with a six year old girl. She voluntarily read about half of the feelings cards and was trying to sound out the other cards. S she was not only learning how to read better but also identify her feelings in the process.

I have a deep desire to make both NVC and Grok household names. I cannot thank you all enough for having the idea to make this game.

- Justin Dreyer, Life Coach,

GROK is... a priceless tool for parents to connect with their kids.”

- Holly Storm

We regularly use the feelings and needs cards to smooth things out whenever our needs don't get met and we are "torqued" with each other! They live in front of the couch in the drawer of the coffee table. If we get pissed at each other then after we have calmed down enough to talk, we sit next to each other and each take a look at the cards and pull out our feelings, talk about them, and then do the same with our needs. It really helps us get back on the same page - EVERY TIME!

-Todd Paulsmeyer, Entrepreneuer

I pulled the GROK cards out on Sunday afternoon while my sister and son were visiting at my mom's house. Since he is just 11 years old I asked if he would mind "playing the card game" with me so I could practice with a child since that is one of my plans to continue with my vision once school starts. He was very willing and we had a very rich experience listening to him share an experience that happened to him and then having him choose the feeling cards followed by my sister, mom and I guessing at his needs.

-P.A. Elementary Teacher

I have just spent the last three days facilitating between a GM and his management team. What started out as a situation that was fraught with conflict and seemingly irreconcilable differences has turned into an opportunity to move the whole team into a new space where honesty and compassion can create better cooperation and deeper trust. A dead end has become a path of opportunity. The tool that made the difference to the whole process? The GROK cards! Thank you, thank you, thank you!

- Angela Heise, Australia

Thought you'd like to hear that I let one of my clients borrow the cards.  Her husband isn't interested in "learning communication skills" and my client is longing for a deeper connection.  They use the GROK cards when she wants to connect with him and she says it works beautifully.

- Mary M, communication trainer

My sister was sharing some memories of times with her ex-husband. I asked her to just take the feeling cards in her hand and pull out the feelings that she felt at the time. I can't emphasize how POWERFUL those cards are when you have them in your hands. We had such a deep conversation centered around her feelings and needs and her eyes were opened to some thoughts and feelings that she didn't ever realize that she had experienced. Thanks for those cards. I love them!

- P.A.

Recently a friend and I took the opportunity to play some "one-on-one" Group Grok. Within a short time we found our consciousness shifting into a depth of discovery and insight. We both became quite energized, feeling the excitement and emotion of exploring through layer after layer of self-understanding. Later, we took time to write about it in our journals. I also gained the extra understanding that with such wonderful NVC tools at our disposal our practice group can meet my needs regardless of how many of us show up.

- B.L.

I want to celebrate Christine and Jean for creating the GROK cards.  It has been amazing for me to witness what a powerful tool they are for teaching and sharing NVC. This Wednesday one woman at the recovery center shared that before the class she only had two words to express how she was feeling "angry" or "happy".  The cards gave her a whole vocabulary and a deeper understanding of what was going on inside her. I really appreciate how the cards can so quickly allow for people to jump into the heart of the practice and experience contributing as well as receiving empathy. I wish we could get a grant so we could give them out for free to jails and recovery centers etc.

- John Cunningham, NVC Trainer, Orcas Island, WA

My husband and I played the "what is irritating you" game last night. It was a hit! It deepened our connection, lessening the stress from "on the go" living.

- Mignon M-S

I feel grok-cited about the new use I found for your cards - Needs Analysis! Following a melt-down at work today I rushed home, took out the cards, and made lists of my top ten needs at work, at home, with people, and in life. Then I rated how my needs with people are met by each of my co-workers on a scale from 0-10. Averaging 4.36, my needs are not well met by my work relationships. Then I rated each of my other top ten lists and found that my general needs at work are met 67%, at home 80%, and in life 74%. Back to the cards, I looked at my feelings at work, which topped out at: grumpy, troubled, vulnerable, and stressed. Now, on to the requests. Stay tuned for the next grok-citing episode...

-Bar Lowenberg, Santa Cruz, CA

We used the cards today in our group practice session. We are frequently astonished at the discoveries we experience even after many years for fooling around in this world of connected communication. The cards are a great catalyst for the process of deeper understanding...allowing a peeling back - layer by layer - to what is really happening. A few of us (me included) also have the Grok It Binder, which is a wonderful and regularly used tool in our practice sessions.  

- T.S., business owner and dad

I use the GROK cards for easy connection, laughter and fun to get the small groups underway.  First round: guess the feeling with body language and facial expression (no words); second round: guess the feeling by having each person say: "I would feel this way if . . . ." and third round: "I would have this need if. The important thing at the beginning is for CONNECTION and LAUGHTER and FUN!  It is always one of the students' favorite classes. Thanks so much for your wonderful CREATIVITY in inventing these cards and the various games. I have played GROK variations with, for example, my 8 year old niece and my 85 year old mother (at the same time!) . Students use them with their youth groups after they graduate, etc.  They are a big hit!

- Deborah van Deusen Hunsinger, Ph.D., Princeton Theological Seminary

Thanks so much for the resources. We used the cards in our home and really shifted some dynamics just playing one round. It’s already helping us to connect and understand each other better.

- In Joy, Samantha Rose

Saturday night, three friends and I "played" game 1 with GROK cards at Roti Indian restaurant in Seattle. It really made our night and celebrated one friend's skills and capabilities.

Today, my business collaboration group "played" game 1 as well - applying them to client situations - very wonderful even with the "tough guys".

- Tanya L. Project/Process Manager

The community here in Colorado is very excited to have these tools!

The ways I know they are being used:

- At practice groups

- At NVC training events

- Between parents and children when kids are not able to talk easily about what is going on for them.

- I recently trained supervisors and administrators at a county Human Services department. They are excited to use the cards between staff as well as with the clients/families they serve in the system, including foster parents, youth communication groups etc.

- The kids GROK cards are used in our local “Giraffe Talk” program with young elementary students. I think they are mostly first graders.

- People are using them for personal self-connection work.

- I use them in sessions coaching couples on relationship issues. And they use them with each other at home as well.

-I make them available at my trainings and presentations for purchase on the spot or send them to your website if I am out of cards.

- Kathy Ziola, MA, CNVC Certified Trainer

I love these cards...I use them to check in with myself and carry them around with me all the time. I wish I could afford to buy a set for every NVC friend I have!

- A.B

One of my new NVC practitioners I’m mentoring liked the idea of GROK, so she bought a deck and started using it with new students and she was pleasantly shocked and amazed by how quickly they got the idea of empathic presence.

- Sylvia Haskvitz, CNVC certified trainer

My 11 year old son is in bed and I am finishing saying goodnight to him.  Lights are out and he is lying down and I'm just getting off the bed.  He always likes to know the lay of the next day and we were talking about it.  He heard frustration in my voice when talking about a close friend - someone he and I are in contact with daily.  I felt cautious about influencing his opinion of this person. He asked what was up.  I told him I really shouldn't talk about it .  He replied to me " mom, but I can give you empathy, or even get those cards out, if you want".  What a kid!  We did talk and it was a great empathy and honesty dance

- From a mom

I love these cards...I use them to check in with myself and carry them around with me all the time. I wish I could afford to buy a set for every NVC friend I have!

- A.B.

GROK rocks! What a fun and exciting way to learn NVC! I'm going to replace my Yahtzee, Clue and Life games and instead play GROK with my family!

- S.J.

I had never had a chance to work with the GROK cards. Barbara Larson turned me into a big fan earlier this year.  I just gave a set to some clients today

- Alan Seid, Director and Trainer, Cascade Workshops

GROK rocks! What a fun and exciting way to learn NVC! I'm going to replace my Yahtzee, Clue, and Life games and instead play GROK with my family!

- S.J.

Thank you to Jean and Christine for developing these GROK cards; I use them frequently with students, clients, and loved ones and am endlessly grateful for the transformation they facilitate!

- Erin Merrihew, Communication & Leadership Coach

"My older child was upset so I gave the cards to her and she put out this hard emotion and then another and another and another. Then she talked about them. After a while I asked her how she was feeling now. She took most of them back and put out Calm. Magic, It was Magic! Then my son said, My turn!”

- From a parent who brought GROK cards home after a class she had taken

Kids GROK Games

Kids GROK; using them with 3 boys ~ the cards were great! all of the boys participated (the mom had said probably only one would). Even the shyest of the shy boys picked up the shy card right away. Everything went fantastic! They really felt heard; and they personally asked if I would come back. Two days later I got a text from her saying that there was tense stuff in the morning, R. was throwing a temper tantrum, and K. looked at him and said, "What are you needing?" This lightened the mood enough so everyone could move on.

- Nancy, Reno, NV

I have been using the Kids GROK cards in my classroom this year, and I am loving it!  The kids were actively engaged in identifying feelings and needs. We talked about how to get our needs met while maintaining connection and friendship. A request was made and accepted. Whoohoo! I thought you'd like to know how much I appreciate the cards!

- Suzanne Lang, 3rd Grade Teacher, CA

I imagine you would be pleased to know and very likely do know how helpful the feelings/needs tools are to so many but especially to children.  My own brother and his family who have an ADD/Autistic/Savant child and another good friend who has a child dealing with severe anxiety.  The cards really help them slow down, get in touch and express, which has been such an amazing blessing for them.


GROKit Facilitation Manual

I just received your NVC GROKit Facilitator's Manual. I want to express my appreciation for the time, detail, thoughtfulness and expertise that is evident in the manual. I have trained extensively with NVC and appreciate the work that went into creating such a useful tool. I experience it as generous and gracious.

- Evelyn Schouela, Quebec, Canada

Wow, reading more and enjoying the details (of GROKit facilitation manual) -- even of consideration of what to bring, ideas for check in, etc. I like the thoroughness and that you determined skill levels of the exercises. Anyone trained could take this book, could take the exercises and have years of ways to practice the consciousness and skills. Fun pics, too!

- Sylvia Haskvitz, certified NVC trainer, Arizona

I have reviewed your Grokit and love it.  I love the simplicity.  With very few words you have captured the essence of an exercise that allows me to read it and take off with it.  Again soooo grateful.

- Judi Morin, certified NVC trainer

I find your GROKit Facilitation and Exercise Manual amazingly helpful in several ways:

  • aesthetically pleasing and easy to read
  • clear and concise
  • comprehensive giving me new ideas and stimulating creative thinking certain ways that feel new to me, even though I've led hundreds of trainings since 2004.

Gratitude to both of you for the resources that you have developed and made available to others -- I am finding this to be a great contribution -- thank you!

- Jeff Brown, NVC Certified Trainer, Columbus, Ohio

Just a enthusiastic thank you for sending a copy of GROK it! with us to Sri Lanka. It was well-used during our 10-day In-depth Residential Training with Jeyanthy and we've turned it over to her hands. Before we did, though, we made sure we had a photo with the entire group with your book front and center. I'm thinking you might enjoy seeing it living in this faraway setting. I found your work very useful.

- John Cunningham & Cat Gilliam, Washington

GROK-it! manual ~ I love love love the facilitator's guide!  so great to have all of that!! Thank you! I love it!

- Nancy in Reno

Thank you so much for the work you do!  I teach about 2 -3 workshops a week and I get bored of doing the same stuff.  Love having new ideas from GROKit! to make it creative for me and the people in attendance.

- Joe

I’m drinking in the great content of the Facilitation manual—it looks perfect for both personal and professional use. Exactly what I need to do the work I feel called to do Thank you for putting it all together—it is very rich with info, inspiration, and practical resources.

- Samantha Rose

I am working with two classes today - and I wanted to use the Buttons/Hearts exercise with some parents tonight and also Walk and Talk for a generative dialogue course this afternoon. I was pleased and grateful when I could just pull out my GROK it! activities book and find them there for ease and clarity. Thanks for putting that all together for us!  Yippee!

- Cindy in Arizona

I have ordered many NVC books from you, many other wonderful cards, and the Grok-It NVC activities and handouts binder. I love every one. Thank you for making all of these available, it provides such concrete support for me as NVC facilitator and for the people I introduce this to. It adds clarity, deeper understanding, fun, and ways to practice to solidify NVC skills and state of mind. 

- S.B.

 Thanks so much for the resources. We used the cards in our home and really shifted some dynamics just playing one round. It’s already helping us to connect and understand each other better. I’m drinking in the great content of the Facilitator’s manual—it looks perfect for both personal and professional use. Exactly what I need to do the work I feel called to do! Thank you for putting it all together—it is very rich with info, inspiration, and practical resources.

- Patricia Malloy, Teacher, Counselor, South Africa

Recently I have had 2 NVC gigs—one with 11th grade students for 8 sessions and one virtually with a group of Kenyans in Nairobi. In both cases I found myself searching for some suitable material. Then I remembered your GROKit manual. I had looked at it before and had a vague sense of thinking of it as very useful to me at the time. And this time I was literally blown away by it's clarity, variety, thoroughness, and organization. I felt SO supported in coming up with activities I could use easily and gleefully. I can't say "thank you enough." It is an incredibly helpful resource and spared be several sleepless nights trying to create or re-create something useful to my groups. Big, big, thanks. And Doug's rap "This is Not" was absolutely the bomb with the Kenyans. Couldn't get them to stop rapping. I am sure they will make up their own verses. Just wanted to let you know my thanks, appreciation and admiration. Big hug,

- Jane Connor, Ph.D., CNVC Certified Trainer, retired University professor

I'd like to start by expressing my huge and heartfelt gratitude to both of you for putting together GrokIt!  My friend and colleague here in Catalonia, Spain, and I use one or more activities from GrokIt! at almost every weekend gathering of all 3 of our yearlong residential NVC trainings--the basic level, the continuation level, and the training for trainers level.  I'm especially grateful for the activities we've found in your collection to support us in adding more variety, movement and fun into the mix.

- H.A.


I absolutely love working with these cards. I personally use them when planning workshops for and love how they help to deepen the conversations and topics we explore!

- Christine Ritzius

I absolutely love these cards! I discovered the Nonviolent Communication program just recently and was blown away! Understanding your emotions and where they come from is so important. For me, as a yoga teacher and an early childhood educator—this will be an important, fun and accessible tool for exploring my own feelings but also to use in my work. Strongly recommend!

- M.E.

This is a great resource for teachers and trainers! The Big GROK size is helpful for large group work where visibility from farther away is important. The smaller GROK version is easier to handle, pass around, and hold in your hand when working with a group of less than 10.

- Rebecca A. Lessler

During a CNVC International Intensive Training, we taped the Big GROK cards along the top of the entire room and participants were able to refer to them during workshops. It was a great resource and a constant reminder for everyone to stay connected to their feelings and needs.

- Christine King, San Francisco

Communication FUNdamentals

This is one of my favorite books. I love cartoon books; they are so readable. One of the first steps toward building a conscious relationship is becoming aware of your language. This booklet uses the jackal as the symbol of habitual speech, what we all grow up hearing and naturally use. This jackal speech is usually full of shaming, blaming, accusing, criticizing our partner. This booklet uses the giraffe as the symbol of conscious speech. I did not know this until I read this booklet, giraffes have a 27lb heart in order to pump blood up that long neck. So they are symbols of speaking from the heart - learning to language truth from vulnerability. Giraffes also have that long neck that gives them that higher perspective. It is like seeing from the observing ego or your higher self. This booklet is about a 30 min read. I give copies of this booklet to couples who come for an initial interview.

-Rod Kochtitzky, LCPT

Thank you for your excellent booklet, "Communication Fundamentals." Before going to a meeting this morning I sat down and browsed your booklet, from the back, forward. I found myself chuckling out loud at the humorous insights.Thanks again for your endeavors to help us learn how to communicate effectively and humanely.

- Don Hoernschemeyer

Your little booklet (Communication FUNdamentals) is really a gem. I have been keeping it with me when I go to work and I just read over a page each morning. It's really been a great tool for improving my skillfulness. I am often grateful for the sweetness of your gifting this to me, and how much it has meant to me, and unknowingly, those who receive my improved communication!

- Q. Events Coordinator, Meditation Retreat Center

I am so happy with the cards and the booklet. I read one page (jackal and giraffe on a topic) each night to my family, and we are using the cards in my office, at home, etc. I hope your work goes well. We really need the contribution you are making.

- J.P.

If you want to get serious, read THIS book—Marshall Rosenberg's Nonviolent Communication. If you want to get REAL, read THIS book—Communication FUNdamentals.  And of course...the ideal is....BALANCE!

- Chris, from New Zealand; at an organization that supports families

We have been working with your materials at our community dance school. The Communication FUNdamentals booklet is extremely clarifying and engaging, and the GROK cards have ushered in many inspirations for us as teachers already. Empathy between dance partners and within the community is very important to us and we are working on building this into our program.

- MM

I thought you might be interested in knowing that NVC is a part of the curriculum at Pacific Oaks College where I am teaching graduate students in Human Development.  This is the second time I have used your book with the students.  They have found it so much more helpful than the denser text that has been assigned.  Thanks so much for your work!     

- College professor

Wanted to tell you that my housemate Caro has been using your FUNdamentals books in English and Spanish with her elementary school therapy clients.  She told me that there is one boy in particular whose family situation has a lot of trouble/conflict.  Anyway, this little boy comes in and keeps asking "Can we look at that book again?"  She said he is really into it, and enthused to come to therapy.  

- K.F.

WeGROK for Two

Feeling moved to share that my husband and I just finished engaging in the WeGrok for Two after some painful disconnection. We found our way back to one another. It truly is like learning a new language and walking through the fire so intentionally, so lovingly to ourselves and one another. I swear every time we do it we walk away more in love with each other. It's just such a gift to this world and I am so thankful for NVC and these incredible tools. 

- SK, Therapist

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