• Matt Edwards

BLIG #6 - Brutal Lockdown Invokes Grounding

Yesterday on breakfast news I hear the heart warming news that 'enquiries to adopt' were up nearly 30% compared with this time last year and that the reasoning for this was that people had become "more grounded". This bizarre set of circumstances we all find ourselves in has meant that almost all of the noise and interference that restricts our intrinsic values have in some cases disappeared. The result - Time to think about what is truly important to us...

On 5th March I published just my second BLIG/BLOG after launching my website and business services online - Who new what was round the corner then...

Here is a quick reminder of what my thoughts were on hearing the Tree's in Australia were showing signs of life and growth after the wild fires that decimated them. Was this Mother Nature's insight on how to survive and thrive in 2020? It was certainly the best 'note to self' I have ever written!

BLIG #2 Rooted & Well Grounded (5/3/2020)

So there we have it - photographic evidence that if the roots survive then the tree survives and has a chance to grow again and maybe become even more resilient the next time our environment is volatile and unpredictable?

Looking after our roots and what is truly important to us then is a lesson we can take from nature.

So what is truly important to you right now? I say right now as often our priorities are changing inline with how we are experiencing things. What was truly important to me when I was 5 or 6 say, may not ring true today - and like wise in another 40 years (fingers crossed!) THATS NOT TO SAY we should forget 'where we have come from' - but simply ask does that 'personal value' and importantly, how I am expressing it right now serve me well? Does it give me strength when I really need it in the moment or power my personal growth?

It was a timely reminder from the photographs too to remain physically and mentally agile, with a growth mindset and play the infinite game*... somedays we are up... somedays we are down... somedays we are winning... somedays we are losing... SO GET COMFORTABLE WITH THAT and keep growing & learning and then share those stories to help others grow.

Grounded! Literally!

So what has kept me grounded and thriving? Quite simply by doing what so many others have discovered, uncovered or rediscovered... What they truly value. Of course my behaviour has been negative or passive at times but on the whole by staying connected to what is truly important to me has proven to keep me moving forward with a growth mindset. The highlights of 'lockdown' were the connections I have made and strengthened. the most obvious being with my family.

Just days after writing that second BLIG/BLOG my business appeared to disappear overnight. It felt like my Performance Tree had been hacked down and all the new growth had been swept away by some freak environmental event... But the roots were still there and with the help of my friends and family I was determined to look after them, stay grounded and look for new light and a new space to grow. The Performance Tree office soon became Stockport Homes office as my wife became a furlough guru overnight and I grew into a stay at home teacher to Louis (5) & Olivia (10). It turned out to be the most challenging and rewarding 3 months of being a daddy - "Amazeballs" as Louis would say!

'The newly formed Matley Lane Infants & Juniors'

Spring Break

Also during that time me and my brilliant Clear Thinking Partners Bev & Kate asked ourselves the question... "What happens now then? What shall we do? So being 'Zoomers' for the last 12 months or more we decided that we would do something different and think a little dangerously... So instead of trying to lift everything off the shelf (which Kate often reminds me... "what shelves? they have all fallen down and the walls they were on have crumbled too!) and shoehorn it on line - we decided to reach out to many of the lovely and truly amazing people we know and have an online experience...

So with Summer School clearly cancelled for the foreseeable future - 'Spring Break Mini Conferences' sprung into action and 9 new faces (makes a nice square!) appeared on screen together for the first time on Thursday 26th March @2pm to hear the enlightening Lyn Paxman take us through her new slow burning adventure of opening a snail farm! #somersetescargot.

It seemed immediately word spread of our new creation and our list grew to almost 50 people with around half downing tools every Thursday @2pm to share some appreciation from the week and tune in to another random but but truly inspiring storyteller from the newly formed community and the rest watching on catch up.

We heard from a "Royal Press photographer" and some of his dangerous moments, we heard about falling off motorbikes, we heard about the smiles of children in their new school in Africa, and their were bucket lists, magic moments and silver eagles soaring and we even got physical... virtually???

In all we recorded 9 amazing episodes of Spring Break Series 1 and all of them are available via the home page or by clicking here...

So what's this spring break thing gonna look like then?... mmm dunno... we'll ask Dory & a diamond skull then!

Here's what our audiences said about Spring Break...

"An oasis in a world of chaos'
"Spring Break is a breath of fresh air amongst many others recycling the same old stuff! "
"It’s amazing what reflections and new understanding I’ve realised from listening to a variety of positive, interesting stories and experiences which demonstrate human resilience and adaptability."
"It is the freshness and originality of the topics whilst honouring the theme - Being dangerous as a force for good."

So a little reluctantly we paused after episode 9 to 'keep 'em hungry for more" and it was round about that time I started playgroup! More to come on that in a moment...

The great news however was that we couldn't just leave it there, so as well as writing blogs like this one and the brilliant ones on we decided to check back in with all 9 storytellers for Spring Break Extra to see how all the stories and journeys have evolved.

Spring Break Extras are again available from my home page or by clicking below... and there's a taster too ...




So clearly immersed in the world of primary school education I joined an adult playgroup... another brainchild of the Clear thinkers. Each week we have used the amazing Cards for Clear Thinking which have been an integral part of my Performance Tree sessions and programmes to take part in thought provoking and action orientated challenges and activities in an uber-safe space. Again I met more amazing professionals trying to navigate these strange waters in their own vessels and the power or collaborative thought and personal reflection took centre stage. Whilst the irrepressible Bev & Kate step back with there true understanding (and they always say it!) that the power of thinking lies in the room or zoom room in this case. Coupled with complimentary guided plays to dip in an out of on Trello - Playgroup has been a force for good and yet more proof that when someone shines a light, allows you space and time, provides you with food for thought with genuine love and attention all you can do is grow!

Ladies and gentlemen, Performance Tree has some new shoots!

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