Inspiring Nuggets

From Annelies & Conduit for Change, LLC

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Annelies M. Gentile, MA, PCC

Integrative Life & Leadership Coach

Consultant | Facilitator | Process Artist | Author | Speaker

Hello dear ones and happy summer!

Since last we connected, I've coached leaders from non-profits to professionals and business owners facing transition from Taiwan to Tampa, started recording for my audiobook, facilitated experiential workshops, a team-building, led a few artful events including a tour for visiting international professors at NCSU, spoke at SAS, planned a speech for GSK employees, confirmed a 6-week teaching slot at the beach at Carteret Community College for the fall, spent wonderful time with family and friends and paddle boarded with manatees and dolphins on a head-spinning trip to Florida and back! Along the way, we saw bear, wild boar, shooting stars, crystal clear waters, ancient cyprus and yes-- a huuuge alligator! Thankfully THAT sighting was from the comfort of a dock. Don't swim in dark waters. Lesson learned.

What have YOU been up to? I want to know! Let me know what's good in your world.

Transactional Coaching vs Transformative Coaching

Recently a client sat with me and listed off all of her accomplishments then said with tears in her eyes, “I have been so successful but none of my accomplishments seem to matter and I don’t know why.“

It's normal to be at a crossroads. When clients begin to coach with me, they’re either striving for change or stuck betwix worlds that are changing and they’re not quite sure what’s happening or what to do next. Transactional Coaching has to do with that first part, striving for change. With a particular goal, we take steps to get there. It’s very transactional. Strategize, make a list, check the boxes. Repeat. It's certainly important but there's more.

Transactions day in and day out check boxes and gets us to point A then point B and so on but this can be deeply unfulfilling. Transformative Coaching is ultimately the path we all need.

All of us will come to an arc in our life where the things that got us to where we now stand will no longer help us through the next process of life. It takes a different perspective, a different approach and a sort of little “d” death to transform through it. Meaning we will no longer be the same. A transformation occurs.

Yes – I'll help you through transactional coaching. I help you check the boxes and attain goals. But at the end of the day, transformational coaching matters more. So, join me-- let's do both.

(PS.. I'm taking clients to the beach for coaching immersions during Aug-Sept. Keep reading for details if you need a little one-on-one in the sun.)

Coach Immersions with Annelies
I'm heading to the BEACH! Join me! I'll be in beautiful Emerald Isle, NC for 6 weeks Aug-Sept. If you're facing personal or professional transition, consider working one-on-one with me to address priority issues, de-stress, gain clarity and set a few goals. Immersions are custom designed to suite your needs, time and budget. Immersion packages range from half-day, full-day or two days. Don't change alone, JOIN ME!

SUMMER :: Joy :: Element of Fire

Each season I provide inspiring nuggets of wisdom through my newsletter which includes invitations to upcoming events. My goal is to help YOU better cope and create through change. Seasonal teachings come through both my personal and professional experiences and the Chinese Five Elements philosophy of Wu Xing (wŭ ching) and Tao, among other philosophies and sciences which highlight and explore unique nature-based ways to understand the processes of change. In addition, each newsletter aims to help you create a mindful mindset and provide resources to build resiliency in the face of personal, professional and cultural change. Find this newsletter useful? Be the gift that keeps giving, share it with a friend!

One of the ways I help professionals become better leaders in life and at work is to help them cope and manage change. We cannot separate the human condition from our work life. They're inseparable. When we try to separate our humanity from the tasks, lists and linear roles of the work-world we harden ourselves and become hard towards others. What's more useful is understanding how to integrate our humanity into all expressions of life, even at work. As life gives us a variety of challenges to cope with, exploring problem-solving through nature is not only interesting and inspiring, it's also a unique way to better understand our own nature.

According to Eastern tradition of Tao, there are five elements expressed through five seasons each represented by an element, color and emotional characteristics. Here's a simplified explanation.

• Winter : Water : Blue : Stillness : Fear
• Spring : Wood : Green : Creativity : Anger
• Summer : Fire : Red : Connectivity : Joy
• Late Summer : Earth : Yellow : Integrity : Gratitude
• Autumn : Metal : White : Acknowledgement : Grief

The season of summer is related to the element of FIRE which feeds and inspires laughter, joy, passion, playfulness, connectedness, maturation and expansiveness, and is represented by the color red and the sound of laughing.

Think of fire as a metaphor. Qualities of popping, expanding, bursting forth, the element of fire in the season of summer has the potential to connect to and affect other things. Think of it as an opportunity to bridge separate parts together.

Let's explore just one fire/summer quality; joy. Surprisingly, we're wired for survival, not necessarily happiness. Although happiness is linked to building trust-- to truly experience joy a combination of factors starting with a sense of safety needs to be felt first. It's hard to feel free and joyous when we're stressed-out. We need to trust our circumstances and the ones around us in order to access the bonus of joy-- even if for a blissful moment.

So how do we cultivate trust? We need to get over our survival instincts, circumvent it, change our relationship with our fight or flight stress triggers. It's most likely impossible to do 100% but we can wiggle our way around and through most of our biggest joy squashers simply by being mindful. One of the ways to be mindful is to notice and pause in a moment of stress.

Recently, "Paula" from a children's advocacy non-profit said, "I'm not finding myself enjoying work anymore. I love what I do but just can't bring my best to work anymore." I asked her what's changed. She named a few; tighter budgets, mismanagement, political woes. Lots of the same things many people non-profit or not are facing. But there was something deeper. She was missing joy. I asked her about her stress level. A sour divorce, court-case and difficulties with a child. And at the root of her suffering was a fracture in trust. We can't enjoy life when we don't trust.

So there began the next phase of our journey; how to foster joy in a trust-less world. That's no small feat! And again, nowadays many of us feel like our neighbor is out to get us.

So... what to do? Maybe the answer is in slowing down or taking a different perspective. A chance to connect and gain the benefit of a few good hearty laughs can do a world of good for your survival even when it feels like the opposite.

Look Within

Explore these questions......
  • When and where do you experience the most joy?
  • What's your relationship to vulnerability?
  • How well do you work with others?
  • What fires you up?
  • How burnt out are you?

Lead a Cause, Take a Pause

Want more? Invite Me to Speak at your place of business, next conference, business or book club, networking or civic group. Want a custom event? Just ask!! Continue to be curious and hungry for learning! I'll meet you at that intersection between the world's greatest need and your deepest hunger. Learn about resiliency, navigating change, stress reduction, creativity and transforming conflict. Invite me in to speak and/or facilitate a workshop. Moving through change has never been so interesting! Contact Annelies

Personal & Professional Transformation

Wisdom Circle Mastermind
Wisdom Circle is a facilitated 6-month mastermind group designed to help you gain mastery over your mindset alongside other professionals. Bi-weekly meetings, accountability partnerships and coaching support helps serious professionals, like you, to define yourself, grow your business, fuel goals, catalyze ideas, gain traction, direction, community and peace of mind from personal and professional accomplishments. Wisdom Circle is limited to 4-6 seats. READ MORE


From Chaos to Calm :: Leading Change From the Inside Out is a quiet call to wake up to our individual and collective role and responsibility in solving our most pressing 21st century problems by cultivating resiliency at the personal level first. In this part personal story, part philosophy and part guide book, you'll learn useful nuggets for life, leadership and well-being. To regain a sense of peace with what is, even in chaotic times, we need to begin within.

Available at Quail Ridge Books, Amazon, Wake County Public Libraries and on Kindle too! Audiobook IN PRODUCTION NOW! :)

Public Offerings


Last Saturday of every month (April-Oct)


$38 includes Lunch & Workshop
Disconnect to reconnect! Learn how important creativity is to living and coping with change. Come explore an art-FULL experience at one of Raleigh's best kept secrets, the Well Fed Community Garden owned by Irregardless Cafe. Join us for Art in the Garden and enjoy the simplicities of life; creativity, community and cuisine. Experience the good life through an outdoor (plein-air) guided watercolor class with Annelies followed by a vegetarian farm-to-table picnic lunch from Irregardless Cafe. REGISTER HERE
Well Fed Community Garden
1321 Athens Dr, Raleigh, NC 27606

Contact Annelies

Empowering people, inspiring ideas and fostering change in you and the world. Conduit for Change, LLC