Reboot Podcast Episode Extras #20 – Anger As Messenger – with Mollie West Duffy, Chrystal Bell & Ali Schultz

The Reboot podcast showcases the heart and soul, the wins and losses, the ups and downs of startup leadership. On the show, Entrepreneurs, CEO’s, and Startup Leaders discuss with Jerry Colonna the emotional and psychological challenges they face daily as leaders.


Mollie West Duffy

Mollie West Duffy


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Chrystal Bell

Chrystal Bell

Reboot Coach & Facilitator

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Ali Schultz

Ali Schultz

Coach and Co-founder of Reboot

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Episode Description

What is your relationship to anger? For many of us, anger is information. Often, it tells us when an important boundary has been crossed or alerts us when a value we hold dear is being threatened. The challenge of being an adult is finding healthy and generative ways to express our anger without hurting ourselves and others. 

In this episode, Mollie West Duffy returns to chat with Ali and Chrystal about the many facets of anger and how it has shown up in their own lives. The trio considers the positives and negatives of venting and gives practical advice for navigating anger in the workplace.

Show Highlights

Top Quotes:

“It’s like somebody sliced out the word anger from my dictionary. I didn’t even have the word anger as something in my arsenal to just say, “Whoa, I’m really pissed about that,” and have that be okay.” – Ali Schultz

“I have two daughters. And I want them to be intelligent about their anger. And by intelligent, it doesn’t mean that I want them to filter their anger or check themselves. If they feel the thing, then, I want them to feel it.” – Chrystal Bell

“I was a total activist in college. It was so easy for me to be angry about the larger structural things that were out there. But when it came to personal anger and individuals, I felt much less agency about that because I saw how anger worked within my own family and the parts that didn’t feel good to me and the parts that felt destructive.” – Chrystal Bell

“I’m very much somebody who is a peacemaker. And when anger comes up in the workplace, I view it as my job to make sure that the conflict gets resolved which can be a helpful thing. But I also have had to work on recognizing when I am experiencing anger in the workplace and a boundary has been crossed so that I can protect myself or my team.” – Mollie West Duffy

“Anger is information. It is telling you that a violation has taken place, a boundary has been crossed.” – Mollie West Duffy

“With certain types of anger, I’m not really interested in being curious at that moment and dissecting it. But, coming back to it and knowing that part of my relationship with anger is also being curious about it, has been profoundly helpful to me.” – Chrystal Bell

“It’s such a gift to be able to sift through to find the information in the anger.” – Ali Schultz

“I think even within our organizations, there are systemic stuff that goes on, whether it’s bizarre family systems things that show up or the code of things we talk about and don’t talk about.” – Ali Schultz

“We all have emotions, and we all have the right to have them. Recognizing that we are all humans and that we all have these really vast and varied emotional landscapes is how we belong to each other. It’s really important for us to recognize that.” – Chrystal Bell

“There’s research that shows that for women crying is a sign of anger because we are not socialized to express anger by getting frustrated or yelling. The way that really intense emotion comes out is through tears.” – Mollie West Duffy

“Where do I go when someone is angry with me? Where do I usually go? Where do I usually feel it? Can I pause to hear what’s being said for long enough, or am I someone who’s immediately gonna lash out? I think it really starts there.” – Chrystal Bell

“The competence and intelligence around knowing what venting does for you can be helpful as well. Like what am I trying to accomplish here? Am I venting to the right person? Am I venting in the right direction, or is this something that I actually need to be talking to the individual about?” – Chrystal Bell

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