Blue Sky Update – April 2024

April 2024 – Update

Things are brighter this month after a topsy-turvy start to the year. So here is my round-up for April as a coach, writer, and human being. Let’s hope the weather starts to improve 😊.

Revisiting Charlie the Iguana

Ten years ago, we made our first trip to Jamaica.

On that trip, we visited Dolphin Cove, where I met Charlie the Iguana, quietly minding his business, sunning himself on a rock. However, on seeing him, our tour guide thought it was too good a photo opportunity to pass up.

You can probably see I wasn’t too keen, but Charlie appears to take it in his stride. But I am sharing this picture because I can’t quite believe it has already been ten years since our first visit to Mum’s birthplace.

Somewhere, we had hoped she would be well enough to visit with the seven of us.

And here I must again thank American Airlines – because without your compassion in offering us a refund, we would not have been able to make the trip when we did after Mum died.

But in any case, with everything that has happened so far this year, I think it is time to pay Charlie another visit 😊.

So, where would you choose to revisit?

What problems are you solving?

One of the things that fascinates me as a coach is hearing about the types of problems that clients enjoy working with and solving. I love to hear how they identify their strengths and can then find ways to build them into their work and career. But it is often more a question of luck and good fortune than anything we see in our schools, colleges, and possibly workplaces.

How do people find a path to excellence where they can identify and utilise their strengths? I can’t help but feel that we are too narrow in how we assess skill and competence. This is especially true if we want to be more inclusive and recognise that our current practices may exclude people with shared characteristics.

Watching programmes like the 1% Club and Taskmaster reminds me that there are different ways to observe how people think – it doesn’t have to be just about general or factual knowledge. Finding other ways to assess someone’s ability to think laterally, spot patterns, and find logical connections is entirely possible.

Very much like the family game that still sits on our shelves, which I wrote about here.

So, how did you find your path to excellence? How did you learn about the problems you are best at solving? And if you have yet to find out, what will be your next step?

Cancelled due to cast indisposition.

This is not what we expected to see on Saturday, April 6th, after weeks of anticipation about our trip to see Tina the Musical. It wasn’t until my sister’s mobile pinged at ten minutes past seven with news of the cancellation due to cast indisposition that we knew anything was wrong.

I have no idea what happened behind the scenes, but I can only assume that negotiations broke down at the very last moment. There were mutterings about last-minute resignations.

Still, with twenty minutes to curtains up, we didn’t have long to find an alternative. Luckily, we were in the middle of theatre land and, within ten minutes, had secured the final three seats for The Play That Goes Wrong at the Duchess Theatre – promoted as Fawlty Towers meets Noises Off, though I would say with some elements of pantomime.

And some of you will already know my love of all things pantomime.

I enjoyed the silliness of the characters trying to hold things together, the helpful audience participation, the physical comedy, and the incredible cast who brought it all to life. Timing was all with this production, and it was fantastic to see how the cast interacted with the cleverly designed set; many moments made me laugh and jump simultaneously.

So, thank you, Duchess Theatre, and the production of The Play That Goes Wrong – after such a stressful period, you saved our special evening, and hopefully, we’ll see Tina in the not-too-distant future.

Actively Seeking Feedback

Facilitating a workshop last week reminded me of a significant piece of feedback I received from a member of my team – back in the day. It certainly highlighted a blind spot in my knowledge and self-awareness at the time and only came about because I asked.

And then, after some reflection, I decided to do something about it.


Because it is so easy to avoid seeking feedback – but then we run the risk of feeding into our blind spots – we run the risk of remaining unaware of the things others can see that we can’t.

So, when was the last time you asked for and were given feedback that made you aware of something you weren’t seeing?

Despite the years, this particular example is still fresh in my mind and gives me an excuse to share this article again.

Until next time