Coronavirus Cross Country & Cross Industry Leadership Session #3 -

Recording and Summary 

Dear all,


Thank you for your energy and enthusiasm during our third session, yesterday. If it was your first one, welcome, if you have attended previous ones – we hope that you continue to find our gatherings valuable as we navigate these unknown territories, together. 


For those of you who were unable to attend the session, please find the recording here to download! 


(Please let Eva Gush know if you want to be removed from this list)


As we move forward in these uncertain times, our objective remains the same:

To provide community support for Cross Border Industry Leaders in this Coronavirus Crisis, with distilled and applicable expert advice, along with the opportunity to connect with other stakeholders.





  • We are in a state of paradox; looking after ourselves and others at the same time. 

    • Be mindful of how the language we use influences how we make meaning of, and experience the world. For example, we are not practising social distancing, we are practising physical distancing and need to maintain a social connection.  


  • We are not in a state of chaos yet, we are in a state of complexity. 

    • Thinking we are in “chaos” removes our sense of agency, we are not in perpetual chaos, where there are no discernible patterns.  We are in complexity, where there are still patterns we can manage and influence.

    • One thing that matters in complexity is maintaining a sense of coherence.  Coherence is hard to define, but we immediately recognise when something is incoherent.  Like a drunk person’s sentences that don’t make sense. If our world feels incoherent it provokes anxiety.


  • Three things need to be in place for individual and collective coherence. 

    • Comprehensibility: are people able to understand what they are presented with? Are they able to make sense of what is going on?

    • Manageability: do people have a sense of agency?  Do they feel they have the skills or resources (or sufficient connection to others) to be able to cope with what is going on?

    • Meaningfulness: can people find a way to make meaning in the situation.  Over the last few weeks, a strong pattern has emerged around the importance of purpose and connecting to the purpose of our organisations when things get tough.  This illustrates how important this third dimension is.


  • Routine / Structure is also extremely important.              

    • Create a routine, something you do have control over, and follow it daily.  Find yourself coming back to your senses in these routines.


  • Virtual Sessions: Mindful Presence practices before and during all virtual sessions are important

    • Be ready 5 min before a session.

    • Gaze/notice objects in your room/office with curiosity whilst you follow your breathing.  Do this for 2 minutes before sessions.

    • Use speaker view more often (many different images and faces are distracting and can have the opposite effect of “connecting”.)

    • Plan for 30 minutes of “me time” between sessions.


Purpose and Meaning are crucial-  ‘’Your vision needs to be Pandemic Proof” (Kyle Penning)


Attached is a visual summary of the session.  Words cannot always reflect what it was all about...  Print this to get the real effect.

How fortunate we are to have the services of


RECOMMENDATIONS ON STAYING PRESENT: (courtesy of - Dr Simon Whitesman MBChB) 

We have specialised brain areas and brain cells that can ’sense’ another. The turbulence of these times is revealing what has always already been here: we are hard-wired to connect. The capacity to connect with ourselves - through body awareness - enhances the capacity to become present and attentive to others, utilising this social brain circuitry.


Simple practice:

  • Feel your feet on the floor, by paying attention to this part of your body;

  • Then, pay attention to the natural breath flowing into and out of the body;

  • Bring into your mind's eye those closest to you. Wish them well (silently in the mind) in whatever way feels authentic to you;

  • Bring into your mind’s eye your work colleagues. Wish them well (silently in the mind) in whatever way feels authentic to you;

  • For a moment open the mind to being part of a global community, and form the centre of your mind and body, in this very moment, wish everyone well, in whatever way feels natural;

  • Come back to your breath for a few moments inside your body;

  • Open your eyes. Proceed with the next moment.


For more information on mindfulness resources, see below: 



Moving forward, you will receive a calendar invitation with a zoom link. Please dial in 5 min beforehand and ideally keep 15 min thereafter open for extended conversations for those who would like to stay connected.


We would appreciate if you could respond to the Outlook invitation for us to keep track of the numbers of participants and make sure others get an opportunity to join if you can’t. 


We would like to enlarge the circle with people with influence, and would appreciate if you could let us know whom we could invite from your network or organisation? As we have limited space, we would like to extend those invitations on your behalf.


Please contact: Eva Gush at to add future participants.

Mindful Leadership

Based in Johannesburg; Delivering services Globally

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