If you were a tree, what kind would you be? Would you have strong roots, a tall trunk, outstretched branches with a canopy of leaves? What gives you security and what inspires you towards growth?

Foundations. Imagine being a tree, unable to move and completely dependent upon the strength of your own foundation to deal with the uncertainty that comes your way. What are your foundations? and how strong are they? When you think about the security and support you have in your own life it is easy to overlook how dependant you are on your family, relationships, your community and environment to provide you with the safety, connection and confidence you need to grow.

Family. The type of soil and the nourishment the tree receives affects it’s ability to develop, form strong roots and a supportive trunk to brave the uncertain conditions of the weather. When a tree has everything it needs it flourishes, grows strong and makes it’s own way, stretching up towards the canopy, reaching for the sunlight. Sometimes the soil a seed is planted in doesn’t have the nutrients and weather conditions for optimum growth. It’s capacity to reach for the sunlight might be stunted by the shade of bigger trees and without the right environment or interventions, the tree is left to fend for itself and make the most of what it has available.

How does your relationship with your family support your growth? How does it inform what security looks like, feels like to you now, and what patterns of behaviour do you see reflected from your childhood in your life as an adult? Becoming aware of the conditions in which your foundations were being established can help you to understand and be grateful for all the aspects of your childhood that nurtured your growth and create an appreciation that everyone is doing the best they can with what they have available. How are you supporting others in your own family with your beliefs and behaviours? Are they creating security and supporting growth?

Relationships. Like the mycorrhizal networks of trees, you naturally create relationships and networks of support within your environment. Just like the exchange between the fungi in the soil and trees, by our very nature, we are able to share information, experiences and resources that have the potential to be mutually beneficial. Just like the fungi that give the tree vital nutrients that it’s unable to access from the limited network of its roots, the trees provide sugar that it’s readily able to access through photosynthesis. These relationships form lines of communication with the larger community and help protect us by keeping us informed of uncertainty and also provide a way to offer support within a wider community to others who are in need. These relationships enable us to learn how to give and receive and create opportunities to further strengthen our foundations and security enabling us to grow. What relationships provide you with nourishment and support?

Community. Just like nature, relationships sit within the environment, a community of interconnectedness. Even fungi and trees need an environment that supports life. Reflecting on how you are already supported by your environment can help you to feel safe within yourself, knowing that you already have access to everything you could need. Your community provides you with opportunities to strengthen your feeling of safety and the necessary elements for growth if you are willing to look beyond yourself and what you know and expand into the potential world of possibility. If you know you have access to everything you need, what is holding you back from growth?


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