Cait Donovan, How to End Burnout and Live with More Energy and Joy – InnovaBuzz 512

Cait Donovan

Cait Donovan, The Bouncebackability Factor

In this episode, I’m really excited to have as my guest, Cait Donovan, one of New York City’s leading burnout experts, host of “Fried – The Burnout Podcast,” and author of the book “The Bouncebackability Factor: End Burnout, Gain Resilience, and Change the World”. Her master’s degree in Traditional Chinese Medicine enables Cait to combine Eastern wisdom with her natural practicality.

After performing more than 25,000 acupuncture treatments, Cait added 1:1 coaching, corporate workshops, and keynotes for companies such as PTC, Lululemon, Nexthink, Teradata, Vedder Price, Marsh and Mclennan, and Workplaceless – all with a focus on ending burnout culture. She is also author of Target Funding – a proven system to get the money and resources you need to start or grow your business.

She has been featured on podcasts and online magazines such as “Forbes”, “NPR”, “The New York Post”, “Thrive Global”, as well as quoted in Oprah Magazine.

In our conversation, Cait talked to me about:

  • The three core symptoms of impending burnout
  • Setting boundaries that are clear, kind and concise – external and internal
  • The power of human connection

Karan Nijhawan in episode 459 and episode 485 introduced us to Cait.

Listen to the podcast to find out more.

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Stop using positive thinking to ignore things in your life that need to be addressed. It will add up and create a lot of weight to carry around over time. @FriedBurnoutPod on #InnovaBuzz podcast Click To Tweet

Show Notes from this episode with Cait Donovan, Author of The Bouncebackability Factor

Key points and takeaways from this episode include:

  • We eliminate a massive resource for ourselves when we don’t utilise our human connection.
  • Asking for help increases our level of resilience.
  • The three core symptoms of impending burnout:
    1. Physical and emotional exhaustion
    2. Feeling disconnected and cynical
    3. Feeling a lack of impact and accomplishment in your work
  • Stop using positive thinking to ignore things in your life that need to be addressed. It will add up and create a lot of weight to carry around over time.
  • When the normal things you do aren’t natural to you anymore, that’s a sign of burnout. If it requires more effort, then something is not right.
  • Having a lot of resentment is a sign of burnout. It’s when you get to this place where you feel like your output is way more than what you’re getting in return. And no matter how much you’re getting paid, it’s not worth it anymore.
  • You can use resentment in your everyday work to find out how your business needs to shift.
  • It’s hard to know what you want ahead of time. Humans aren’t great at how we are going to feel emotionally about attaining a certain goal. We won’t know ahead of time what will make us happy.
  • Focus on what’s taking your energy away and figure out if it’s something that you have control over and can shift. And if so, then maybe shifting that will bring you closer to the thing that gives you comfort, joy, and fulfillment, rather than trying to find an answer.
  • There’s no golden key to everything. There are lots of tiny nuances and adjustments that you have to make all the time to continue to stay on the path that feels right for you.
  • There’s a difference between internal and external boundaries.
  • Internal boundaries are when you have to make decisions for yourself on how you are going to spend your time and energy.
  • When you start paying attention to where resentment is coming up, you can start figuring out patterns in places where you’re constantly overstepping your own boundaries that are leaving you resentful. Those are all the places where you need to start honouring your own commitment to yourself first.
  • Be a boundary BRAT. Use words or concepts of Beliefs, Resources, Abilities, and Trust.
  • Offering people your trust in their abilities empowers them to find solutions without using you as a resource.
  • You are robbing people of the opportunity to learn for themselves and become self-sufficient when you’re over-giving all the time and trying to solve everyone’s problems.
  • People need help sometimes but if you’re resentful about it, then you’re not the person that needs to be helping. It’s better to guide them to a different resource that might help them instead of being responsible for the help yourself.
  • When pricing your services, it’s important to think about how it will impact your generosity.
  • You can’t please people all the time. It’s not a bad thing to want to bring joy and pleasure to people’s lives. You just have to have enough generosity within you to be able to do it.
  • It doesn’t even matter what you do. It’s about knowing how your particular actions are going to add to or subtract from the amount of generosity you want to have in your work.
  • It’s OK to be generous. It’s OK to please people, but you have to serve yourself with enough finance, energy, and emotion first so that you can do that in a way that is overflowing and easy.
When pricing your services, it's important to think about how it will impact your generosity. @FriedBurnoutPod on #InnovaBuzz podcast Click To Tweet

The Buzz – Our Innovation Round 

Here are Cait’s answers to the questions of our innovation round. Listen to the conversation to get the full scoop.

  1. #1 thing to be more innovative – Have white space. You can’t come up with a creative solution to anything if you don’t have the actual time to sit and think.
  2. Best thing for new ideas – Don’t develop them at all. Go to where people are asking the questions that need to be answered and start answering those questions.
  3. Favourite tool for innovation – Binaural Beats.
  4. Keep project/client on track –  Communication. If you’re worried about it, communicate it.
  5. Differentiate – Be authentically YOU.

To Be a Leader

Resentment is a useful tool. Spend a bit of time getting curious about it. If you’re nervous about it, that means it’s popping up and some boundaries need to be put in place. That means you’re close to burnout. Don’t be afraid of resentment because it’s great information for you if you can stop and listen to it.

Reach Out

You can reach out and thank Cait through her website.

Suggested Guest

Cait suggested we have a conversation with creativity coach, Genein Letford. So Genein, keep an eye on your inbox for an invitation from us to the InnovaBuzz Podcast, courtesy of Cait Donovan.


Cool Things About Cait

  • She was a nerd in school. She loved all things science and getting perfect grades.
  • She traveled to China to do weeks of self-cultivation.
  • She loves chocolates.
It's not a bad thing to want to bring joy and pleasure to people's lives. You just have to have enough generosity within you to be able to do it. @FriedBurnoutPod on #InnovaBuzz podcast Click To Tweet

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Jürgen Strauss

Dr. Jürgen Strauss is The World's Best Human-Centred Podcasting Coach and the only Podcast Innovator with the signature bright yellow headphones, who masterfully crafts human connection for high-impact achievers in a vibrant community. You can find Jürgen on LinkedIn, The InnovaBuzz Podcast, The Flywheel Nation Community as well as on Innovabiz' InstagramTwitter, Facebook pages and his personal Photography website.  

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