• Cait Donovan

Carolyn Brown: Love Where You Live, Beautify Your Home, and Drink Your Damn Water

Updated: 5 days ago


Overview

I think of food as medicine. Everything you eat becomes every cell in your body, so it can be healing or it can be potentially exacerbating the issue,” says Carolyn Brown, nutritionist and co-founder of Indigo Wellness Group. Carolyn explains that when it comes to burnout recovery, food can act as a healing or a harmful force, depending on how it is used. That’s why she tends to promote simple, enjoyable additions rather than harsh, restrictive diets. When we are focusing on decreasing our stress levels, hardcore changes to our diets or exercise routines will only raise our cortisol levels even more.


Carolyn is no stranger to burnout. Her burnout story began in New York City, where she was living in a shoebox apartment and seeing over 150 clients a month one-on-one. Carolyn felt stifled in just about every aspect of her life, from her physical space to her work life to the NYC dating scene. When she finally realized how burnt out she had become, she finally made a cross-country move to Colorado, where she could find the physical and emotional space to breathe.


Tune into the kickoff episode of our 4th season of FRIED. The Burnout Podcast for a conversation with Carolyn about the restorative power of simple changes. Learn why loving where you live is a crucial step towards mental and physical wellness, how seemingly small changes can make a world of difference in your day-to-day life, and why gentler is better for your body and your soul when it comes to nutrition.


Quotes

  • “I had this total a-ha moment following a full-on breakdown. I was walking through the streets of Rome hysterically crying wondering if anyone had ever been so lost in their whole life.” (4:50-5:02)

  • Get the veggies that look beautiful or the plates and the mugs. That was something really important to me when I started my new, fresh life in Denver, I got rid of everything from that New York apartment. So every single mug or plate I was buying, I wanted to try to be supporting a small, woman-owned business and also have it be something I loved every single time I picked it up.” (25:42-26:06)

  • “Clutter ends up impacting what we eat and how we eat, too….Clutter can make us eat up to 44% more. And we’re more likely to eat the unhealthy things when we’re in an environment of clutter.” (26:41-26:55)

  • I think of food as medicine. Everything you eat becomes every cell in your body, so it can be healing or it can be potentially exacerbating the issue….Just simply try to add one fermented food per day. I really think of addition when you’re feeling a little bit paralyzed, like what can we add in. This isn’t the time to say, ‘Let’s go on a sugar cleanse or anything like that.’” (37:26-37:56)

  • “Make sure you’re hydrated. When we’re dehydrated, we’re just grouchier, especially women. There’s lots of research on this, that it really affects women’s decision-making, ability to focus and mood overall.” (39:08-39:20)

  • Please don’t try any crazy diets or extreme eating trends while feeling really stressed or burnt out. It adds to your stress levels. We want to really be focusing on decreasing stress and many of these things, whether it’s funky eating habits, severe intermittent fasting, going keto, or doing HIIT training, doing really intense exercise, actually ends up increasing our cortisol, increasing our stress hormones, doing the opposite of what you might hope to.” (39:53-40:25)


Links

Carolyn’s Website: www.indigowellnessgroup.com

Carolyn’s Instagram: www.instagram.com/carolynbrownie

Register for Carolyn’s Detox’ish Week: (Cait is ALREADY registered and wants to see you there! :)) https://academy.indigowellnessgroup.com/courses/indigo-detox-ish-week-august-2021


XOXO,

C


If you know that it’s time to actually DO something about the burnout cycle you’ve been in for too long - book your free consult today: bit.ly/callcait


Podcast production and show notes provided by FIRESIDE Marketing


TRANSCRIPT


Caitlin Donovan

Hello FRIED fans and welcome to season four of FRIED the burnout podcast. I'm your host Cait Donovan and my mission with FRIED is to hashtag end burnout culture. On this pod, we end burnout culture by sharing stories of people who have been through it all sharing expert tips from the best in the burnout field, sharing hashtag street from Cait episodes with my own expertise, and some fun research now that I'm a student again, plus sharing actionable steps to help you end burnout starting today. If you're feeling burned out right now and you need personalized guidance, you can book a free breakthrough burnout call with me, you'll find the link Bitly backslash call Cait in the show notes. Also, if you love FRIED and want to be part of our community, we'd love to have you just head over to Facebook and type in FRIED the burnout podcast discussion and click to join our group. It's a place for continued healing deeper conversations and connections with people who just get it. And now for this week's episode. Hello everybody. Welcome back to season four FRIED the burnout podcast I can't believe we're four seasons in that feels impossible to me, I would have never guessed that I would have even been doing this long, and that it would be as exciting and as popular as it is. So thank you to your ears and your brains and your hearts for making space. For FRIED the burnout the podcast. I appreciate you. And today I am I'm always excited to talk to my guests because I have amazing guests. But today I'm talking to someone who I've known for nearly 20 years, which seems kind of crazy. And today's today we're gonna hang out with Carolyn Brown, who is a nutritionist and the co-founder of Indigo wellness group, her co-founder is one of my very closest friends. So it's very exciting. She has worked one on one and in group settings with thousands of clients to reach their health, wellness and weight goals specializing in helping them quote-unquote, live a healthy life without losing a social life. Carolyn has been featured on the Today Show Dr. Oz Fox, Men's Health, CBS News, and many more publications. So if you didn't know, she's done all the things and all the places. And now she is gracing us with her presence here on FRIED. Carolyn, welcome to the show.


Carolyn Brown

Thank you so much for having me. It's so great to be with you today.


Caitlin Donovan

I'm so excited. And I've been thinking about this for ages. So I'm happy to be actually doing it now. And what sparked this before you get into your burnout story. what sparked this for me, and actually asking you at this particular time was that you posted something a while back, because you moved from New York City to Boulder, and you posted something about how important your environment is you were back in New York City you were visiting, and you were noticing the changes in energy and kind of how that affected you. And that's why I was like, okay, we need to talk about this because I've had huge environmental changes in my life multiple times and on various continents. And I know how important this is, but people don't give this enough credit. So I wanted to spend time on that today. So but before we dive in totally to that, let's start with your burnout story.


Carolyn Brown

Yeah, absolutely. And yeah, environment, it's it's cool to go back to the old life for a second and really recognize how much that transforms you. So my burnout story. And it's interesting because at the time, I don't even know that I knew it was a burnout was that I was in New York for about 12 years and living in the West Village, you know, 100 square foot apartment with occasional mice and no dishwasher just to really set the stage. A little lock-up. But you know, pre-war building, and I was at the same private practice, I was working one on one with clients, as you said, and in that sort of work dynamic for a decade, I had the same group of friends, you know, it was just like sort of Groundhog Day. And I at one point was seeing about 150 clients a month for nutrition and was just like, I was really I could put the words on it that I was burnt out on that. But I didn't realize that it was bigger than that. And so it everything sort of came to a head where my work situation really all of a sudden, it needed to change. And I knew that with every cell of my body that I was ready to sort of move on. And that was there was no more growth possible for me there. And then I was traveling a little bit I actually talking about change of environment. I was in Europe for a friend's wedding, and was meeting these people who were nomadic and works but they, you know, would sometimes be in in like Portugal or they would be in Italy. And it just expanded my mind about what was possible. And I was like, Whoa, I think I need to think beyond moving to Brooklyn and starting my own private practice there. That to me was as far as I could think of like from an expansion perspective. And I had this total aha moment following a full-on breakdown. She definitely was walking through the streets of Rome, hysterically crying, like wondering if anyone had ever been so lost in their whole life,


Caitlin Donovan

Sort of everybody is nodding their heads right now they're like, yes, we've all been that lost.


Carolyn Brown

We all had that moment where I have like photo, I remember taking a photo to just remember how sad and stared and lost I felt and knowing that I luckily have like my family support, but like I hadn't saved any money, all of my money, went to rent and some new york city lifestyle stuff, going to SoulCycle you know, as many times a week as possible and eating out all the time. So to be honest, even though I had people's support, I didn't have like a financial cushion at all, which would have made this you know, a total no brainer, but there was a lot of fear there about like, how am I going to, you know, whatever I'm going to do next How am I going to make that happen with like, $7,000 in my bank account, not really like a month, you know, the people say, you need to have all your ducks in a row, you need to have like, three months of rent, like saved and all those parts of it. And I did it. And so I knew something had to change. And I was Yeah, on a flight and in Europe and was like, Whoa, I think I need to think bigger than New York. It's just like, snapped and then I've made a list of all the places I could possibly go including, you know, your Bali, Australia. How far away Could I get? And then it was really, Colorado just like jumped off the page for me that it was like Denver felt like really easy home base. It felt like I knew some people I had a couple of friends out here a little bit of family. And yeah, from there, it was just like green lights. It was like you know, I had to go back home talk to my former business partner, which was extremely stressful and hard for me and really unwind from my life in New York, I couldn't just pick up and leave there had to be you know, a slow.


Caitlin Donovan

You had a conscious uncoupling with New York City


Carolyn Brown

Conscious, I kept playing with New York City. Exactly. It was slow. Got a little bit of my personality, too, that when I'm done with something, I'm just like, ready to move on from it. But I had to stay put in order to leave gracefully, you know, graciously had a ton of clients, their fans, again, make some money too, and really save at that point in order to move on to what was next. So again, it couldn't just like pick up and leave or just because I was feeling burnt out on work as I'm sure so many people who come on here. And so people who are listening can relate to it's not just you know that the financial piece is a real piece of it that you know, you want to feel safe in order to make the next best decision for yourself. Yes, so you've heard Yeah, exactly. Exactly. So yeah, that's sort of like the that was like the burnout days for me that it was really just like everything cut sort of coming to a full ending and not knowing at all what to expect that was next. But I just could feel like intuitively was the first time I was really purely acting on intuition. Yeah, it was that like, this is gonna be amazing. And at that point, workwise I didn't know exactly how it was gonna look or feel. I didn't know where I got it. I got an apartment on FaceTime in Denver. And the great thing about Denver from New York City is like the cost of living is, you know,


Caitlin Donovan

people in Colorado are like, it's real expensive. And it's like, Ah,


Carolyn Brown

It's a little different. Yeah, so that sort of also gave me the ability to like take a month be able to take a month in between to take a beat and like replenish took out took a month off social media, which was really important because that is like really intertwined with my job. But like you're seeing you know, everyone live their best lives, APAC supposedly, yeah, we could have a whole other conversation about. And so that was really important for me to just sort of clean slate and get really in tune and like be you know, meditating every day journaling and listening to that.


Caitlin Donovan

And so before we get to like the journaling, and the meditating and like the nice, pleasant stuff,


Carolyn Brown

it was horrible. Yeah,


Caitlin Donovan

let's talk about the horrible because you go from crying on the streets of Rome to moving to Denver, like there was there was a lot of ugly in between. So yeah, well,


Carolyn Brown

I remember I think even, you know, texting with you a little bit on Instagram in between the ugly really was having to have really uncomfortable conversations with my former business partner, telling clients who some were super upset. It surprised me that some people were really upset, that I was leaving. And even if I would eventually be able to, like, continue my work with them. People, you know, especially as a healer, as a practitioner, people love to know that you're reliable and trustworthy, and they can depend on seeing you every other week at the same location. Even if you feel like you've outgrown that. Yeah. So I would say yeah, but the main hard stuff was really work-related. My family, luckily was super supportive. And they were very much like, yeah, you need to go you need to get out of here. And look from a friend's perspective. They were actually interestingly, everyone's sort of dispersed around the same time. Some of my best friends were leaving the city around the same time, it just felt like that part of life was stagnant. Yeah. And I would say even dating-wise, oh my gosh, that was another huge one. I just knew that whoever I was meant to meet was not in New York that felt like it had really, I felt like I dated Eric at that point



Caitlin Donovan

which is kind of funny because now you're dating someone that was living in New York, right?


Carolyn Brown

Which is perfect because we both experienced it. But it's not, you know, I think, for me, what I found and actually what could use my current boyfriend has said to me is like, men don't move to New York to like, meet a partner they met, they moved to sort of like make their careers. And so now when I look back on it, I'm like, Oh, of course I wasn't, I was never gonna meet someone that I was ever gonna meet him there. And so it's Yeah, but dating her I felt like I was just I would date like, all different types of people. It just was never a fit. And it was like Peter Pan syndrome, I would just have the most ridiculous stay in series, like people's ex-girlfriends would show up on my date. And like, cut them down and or, like I've had, you know, or like, I would go on a date with someone and find out they're married or, like, thing after thing that, you know, they're funny stories and they honestly were funny at the time. I like could laugh about it then. But at some point, I was just like, I'm so tired of this. Yeah. This is not you know, like, my life isn't expanding or growing or like feeling enriched anymore. And it's, I knew also it was space-related to like I again had 100 square foot. Yeah, probably bigger than that. But like maybe 300 square foot apartment. It was so small. I could barely put my arms out to each side and spin around. Yeah. So that all of a sudden you know in nature became so like, I was like, I know I need this is sort of a laser focus.


Caitlin Donovan

Yeah and in your last year in New York, you weren't you were getting in a car and leaving frequently. You were getting into like upstate going on hikes like that was happening a lot during that.


Carolyn Brown

Yeah, yeah. I think for Zipcar, I was getting, grabbing a zip car, and like, Sunday morning, throwing my dog in and getting out of there for just a couple of hours. So I think I subconsciously like knew that that was so important, but didn't realize from like, didn't you know, to me, it was New York or nowhere. That was where I was. I came from New Yorkers feel. Mm-hmm. Yeah. Now I'm like, It's New York or anywhere. Anywhere but New York. So I should say like, how far away I love it. I love the people there. But it's it's an energy.


Caitlin Donovan

It's an energy. Yeah, absolutely. So when you were visiting New York, you'd moved to Denver, you met someone, your life is shifting. You and Sarah start into a wellness group. There's a lot happening. Yeah, a lot of changes. And you do that and you're there and then the pandemic hits. And so you're there, you're like, really there because you can't go anywhere. So you hang out for you know, over a year. And then you came home for a visit.



Carolyn Brown

Yeah, it for about two weeks, we had planned visit. And it was so interesting. It was like the second I touched down in New York City. You know, at first it's like this vibrational energy, that's, you know, it's so energizing, it's so alive, you can find anything you want 24 hours a day. And so of course, like, Oh my gosh, I think we need to start spending every other you know, every other month here. And then the conversation shifted real fast when I woke up the next morning with like, crippling anxiety, and like this overwhelming feeling of like, uhm just like, constructiveness where I feel pretty expansive now. Like, you know, the opposite of space of really feeling claustrophobic. And so that was just so it was just a physical response. And I feel like it's also even from a speed perspective, like, all sudden, everyone's walking back and fast eating fast. Everything in on the East Coast, and I'm sure some places in the West Coast too happen really fast. And my nerves it affected my nervous system right away, which I was super surprised to, to feel I was not expecting it to be such a biological sort of physical reaction.



Caitlin Donovan

And I want people to take a minute to think about the fact that this happens not only on a city / state level, but it also happens on a home level. It happens on a room level, it happens in an office level. Now part of the issue I think with like the going back to work that's happening now is that are the environments at work were not designed to be good for your nervous system. You know, like, that was never part of the conversation. So Marchen and I used to speak about like when we moved to Prague, from Prague, you can drive to Warsaw, it's now it's about six and a half hour drive, then it was eight because they were still building highways. But when we moved it was about an eight hour drive and it was you know, kind of like three hours to the border and then five hours to Warsaw and we were living in Prague which is a much calmer environment, then Warsaw like much calmer environment than Warsaw, it's a city but it's only 1 million people was like not really that big, you know. And it's a slower pace of life, there's a lot less judgment, there's a lot less aggression, they went through the same wars, but in different ways. There's a, there's a lot of strange historical things that would seem to be the same from the outside. But when you really know the history, really, we're not. And we could feel like we would cross the border into Poland. And I could see my husband's heart rate go going up. Like I could see it happening, like his face would get red, he would start to be angrier in the car, like you'd get road rage. And I was like, Whoa, we like literally just crossed a border, like borders are invisible like this. There's not even, there's not even a place to stop. Because the EU has open borders. It's not like we're driving through border control. We literally just like crossed over into a different territory. And all of a sudden, shit was different. And we both felt it. And for me, like a huge part of my burnout story was the fact that I was in Warsaw, there are always internal and external factors of burnout and my internal factors are plenty I have plenty of plenty of shit that I'm still working on over here. Everybody just just doesn't decide I'm not done over here. Just recently, I realized that I finished my workday and I wasn't tired. And I was like, Oh, I should go do more. And then I was like, whoa, whoa, burnout Coach, slow your roll. You don't have to do more. Let's go sit down, please. So yeah, still things to learn. There's always things to learn. But the external factors also really matter. So I want everybody to take a minute to think about how they feel when they're sitting at their desk. Do you like where you sit? Can you stand? Is it pretty? Does it smell good? Do you have any nice pictures around? Like let's bring it down to the smallest, but not also forget about the biggest so you're coming back into New York and you're feeling this vibration? You wake up in the morning, you're high anxiety. And you're like, how did I do this for?



Carolyn Brown

Like, how did I do this for 12 years because I didn't I honestly didn't really put the pieces together? I just thought I you know, that phase of life had Yeah, it sort of had lived itself out. And it was time for what's next. But I think also what was really happening was like my nervous system was completely taxed from getting on the subway every single day. And I hadn't minuted of this I moments of this, like at some point, I was like, I can't take this away anymore. Like I had started taking vios to and from my office in the West, from home in the West Village to the Upper West Side. Because I couldn't get on the subway anywhere. It was like the sounds were so loud. And the smells and the people like you know, cutting their fingernails


Caitlin Donovan

Count on New York for something good. There's a guy playing the flute outside my building yesterday when I went into my acupuncture office, and there's a guy playing the flute and it was really bad. And I was like I just want to give this guy money to stop.


Carolyn Brown

That's a that's New York City for you though. Yeah, exactly. So yeah, they were like things where I was definitely hitting my peak, but I didn't realize how much it was the environment. And you know, I definitely still would like I was like so able to have fun, but like there were just even the fact that like, when I would walk my dog She's not even allowed on the grass on the West Side Highway. Like there were things that I was like I think this is wrong. I think there's something you know not right about this for either of us that I can't like be barefoot anywhere. You know, I have a little bit like earthchild always in me that's like, I just want to be like putting my feet in the water. And like you're not about to do that in the Hudson River.


Caitlin Donovan

To come out with an extra toe.


Carolyn Brown

Exactly, unless you need to get a tetanus shot line that faster. Exactly. Yes, I so going back though, again, like a year and a half later, I felt like I was such a clean slate energetically and emotionally and coming from a place where we have endless space. And we're like in, you know, on the foothills and we have trails, you know, three minutes away from us. I was I felt like I was really yeah, coming in a totally clean slate. And then my nervous system right away, was like, eek, like, yeah, went up 100 matches


Caitlin Donovan

Well, and it will go back to what it knows, right? Like, it knows that when you're in that environment, you're functioning at that level, right? So your nervous system will just go back to Okay, we're functioning at this level, let's do this. Like, we know how to do this. Let's do this. And you're like, Okay, we're not doing that anymore.


Carolyn Brown

Totally .and interestingly, even back out for me after a couple of days, because you get used to living in that frequency. Yeah, you get used to walking faster, you get used to people not being super friendly to you. And I don't think that's always true. Like with New York, I do think people are friendlier than they can be. Yeah. You know, I started to just like pick up on that I had rented again, Zipcar, which is like my Keita life living in New York, and I went to go pick it up. And not only was Zipcar not there, but there was also someone else waiting for it. And she started yelling at me about how it was hers that the nonexistent Zipcar was her zipcar


Caitlin Donovan

Like Zipcar right now



Carolyn Brown

That doesn't exist but it makes your blood pressure go up those little experiences all over the place to soda I just I that was so crystal clear and even though it didn't even out I was very ready to come back home to you know a place where we have a couple of bedrooms and have some space and so it yeah it absolutely affects your mental health and your overall well being


Caitlin Donovan

Yeah so I want to go back to this idea that you don't really notice what's happening when it's happening good because a lot of times when I talk to people when I, when we start like a series of coaching calls or just even a free calls people are saying I just don't really know like how this happened to me like I felt like I was handling things for a long like I was handling things and now I can't handle the same things anymore like the same sounds are too much the same amount of work, is too much I can't keep up I'm not being productive I can't let you know everything that used to be fine is too much. And this is so common that I want people to stop and focus on that for a second in what you said like you didn't know it until you left cleared your slate and came back and almost got attacked by yourself he almost almost had like a nervous system attack of just like bitch What are you doing to me? totally right. So you don't always notice because we do our bodies are designed to become accustomed to our environments. They're supposed to do that because that's how we survive. Yeah. Right so if you find yourself in this place where you're like well this environment didn't used to burn me out so it shouldn't burn me out now that's not really the right thinking because it doesn't matter if the environment should or shouldn't burn you out it matters that your nervous system is saying that for whatever reason whatever this is these pieces they're not okay for you anymore Does it mean that we have to demonize them? No There are plenty of people that love New York energy and thrive in it right there are plenty of people that love worse our energy and thrive in it it's not that these it doesn't make the places bad sometimes the places are bad you're in a workplace it's toxic.


Carolyn Brown

Yeah back fluorescent lights on you all day long right don't at all honor our circadian rhythm yeah so good


Caitlin Donovan

Exactly.



Carolyn Brown

I think also we do have to keep in mind like it is you know to be able to pick up and move somewhere is at some level a privileged thing to of course have a connection not have you know, I don't have kids I didn't have anything like physically you know or a man.



Caitlin Donovan

You said you didn't have a lot in the bank but that's more in the bank than most Americans have totally every day right so even that didn't doesn't seem like a lot when you're making a big move but definitely makes it easier than the average person.


Carolyn Brown

And I agree with you more yeah there are elements of this that I know for some people are impossible and they did have to figure out how to live in a you know if they are born and raised in the in the Bronx or wherever like and if sometimes you can't leave where you are. And so also developing other coping skills I think for that or at least I have people who do live in Brooklyn yeah they're going through never leaving and I give them homework to like get out of there


Caitlin Donovan

Yeah,



Carolyn Brown

You know get you know if they're if they do have access to a car get upset and go for a hike in nature. You know, even get out for a run and go to Coney Island. It doesn't Yeah, I have to look like yeah, you know, the mountains and yeah,



Caitlin Donovan

Yeah, I think one thing is get out. And I think the other thing is make the environments that you spend the most time in as soft and comfortable and nurturing and nourishing as you possibly can. So I have this like a wooden desk and while I was podcasting, I kept hearing like I would pick up my mouse and I clicked something and then I put it down and say you hear that sound everybody it was really disturbing. You didn't like it. Yeah, I didn't either. But I used to hear that all the time. And it bothered me. And I'm really sensitive to noise and a nervous system level. I'm the hypersensitive person in general, and really sensitive to noise. So that was every time I heard the mouse clack. It was bothering me. And then I stopped and I was like, Oh, they make these amazing computer pads that you can just put on your desk. I spent $14 on amazon.com and got this lavender-colored little plastic, like, like fake leather looking, you know. So I now that's where my keyboard lives. That's where my mouse lives. That's where my mug lives. Things like this really matter,


Carolyn Brown

Right? And If that's such a good point. It doesn't have to be expensive It can be a planche.


Caitlin Donovan

Right? Like, it's so important.


Carolyn Brown

Yeah and on that note, having plants is so good in your environment, except for you know, even cleaning the air and things like that.


Caitlin Donovan

Yeah so when you're thinking of if you are in a place where you're listening to us, and you're like, Oh shit, my environment is totally wrong, I need to get out of here. If you have the financial ability, and the other sets of privilege that allow you to get out of there and move to someplace new, make a plan, take advantage of it. If that's not your reality, then do everything you can to make sure that everything within the place that you spend the most time is as comforting as it can be like, if you're getting on your couch every night, and you're pulling on a blanket because you like to snuggle, and that blanket is scratchy, like, please get a soft blanket.


Carolyn Brown

Yeah, yeah, I think that with food to nutrition, being my background to have, like, you know, get the veggies that like, look beautiful, or the plates and eggs. And that was something really important for me. When I started my new fresh life in Denver I came with, I got rid of everything from that New York apartment. So every single mug or plate I was buying, I wanted to like try to be supporting a small woman owned business. And also have it be something that like I loved every single time I picked it up. Yeah. So again, it can be a mug if you you know, our tea or coffee drinker every single morning.



Caitlin Donovan

Yeah, and if like that's one of the things that I'm quick to get rid of these days are mugs that don't feel good when I slip my hand in into this


Carolyn Brown

Totally likes that. You think every single time I there's two mics that are nonmatching, but there's one that I always try to give to my boy, cuz I'm like, I can hate this much like I really should just get rid of rid of it. Don't ever want to use it. But those little things when you're looking at clutter, and like that ends up impacting our mental health. And interestingly too, clutter ends up impacting what we eat and how we search. So to say more on that, yeah, clutter can make us eat up to 44% more. And it's more likely to we're more likely to eat you know, unhealthy things when well,


Caitlin Donovan

whoa, whoa, my brain just exploded out of my head.


Carolyn Brown

Yeah, it's a big one. So cleaning up your kitchen can be so good for making healthier

food


Caitlin Donovan

Together can make it, Can you say that stat again, please there are people in the back,


Carolyn Brown

Clutter can make us eat up to 44% more so almost like almost, you know, a full one


Caitlin Donovan

And a half times your day. By the time you finish.


Carolyn Brown

Exactly. So really cleaning up your environment, that's something I have all of my nutrition clients try to do too, is just like make their you know, trying to make your kitchen a little bit of a cleaner sound environment. And you know, my kitchen gets messy as anyone. But just trying to keep that in the back of your mind. It's like you're finding yourself picking up chips or cookies all day, and then you look around and it is chaos. Just get organized and leave a bowl of fresh fruit out to so that you know there's a lot of visual cues to have what we see, you know, first we're more likely to reach for,


Caitlin Donovan

It just blew my mind.


Carolyn Brown

I'm glad that I can blow your mind because I feel like it's usually the opposite.


Caitlin Donovan

That just blew my mind. I mean, it makes absolute sense. I've just never really considered it


Carolyn Brown

Clutter makes us feel chaotic. And I'm sure you would know a ton yes or more about this from the burnout side of things. But when it sort of brings up those chaotic feelings, we're just it's lack of mindfulness, really. And so not being completely aware of what our decisions are.


Caitlin Donovan

There's another burnout coach that focuses on farm DS and she her she has a podcast called the burnout doctor podcast. And she's a specialist in Marie Kondo the konmari method. And she talks about that as one of her major points like her name is Dr. Jessica Louie. She's wonderful. And she's constantly talking about decluttering I feel like when you're burned out you like sometimes you don't have the brain to declutter, like you just you can't. Your brain isn't online. And it's really hard to do. But even the small things one, I mean, we talk on Friday all the time I talk about frying pans, first of all, because the logo like obviously, and second of all, because one of the things that I noticed was that I was getting resentful every morning because I eat eggs and vegetables, eggs with vegetables almost every day. And so I would be frying my vegetables in the morning and my pan and then I'd throw an egg in there and it would get stuck. And then I'd be annoyed that my egg was stuck. And I'd like be trying to like scrape it out and then I'd be annoyed that I was scraping it out and then I didn't want to use more oil and then and now I'm having breakfast and I'm annoyed that I had to scrape up my like by any pan.


Carolyn Brown

Yeah, yeah, get that always pan fry. I got one. It's a life-changer. So I was Yeah, that's so interesting because I was using a cast-iron skillet for everything. I think similarly. And then I because I was just like annoyed that I would have to spend X number of dollars always pass. And then what's the name of the actual brand? Do you remember?



Caitlin Donovan

Um, our place our place? Yeah, we're giving them free shout-outs right now.


Carolyn Brown

Free shout-out but so worth it. Yeah,



Caitlin Donovan

I know I love that pan. My only issue with it is that it was bigger. I wish it was a little Big bigger yeah because I like to cook like eight meals at a time so that I only have to do it once I'm I'm fine eating leftovers for three days as long as I don't have to cook every day.


Carolyn Brown

Yeah, yeah but those are the little things too that prevent they're pretty or they're they're beautiful they prevent you from having further burnout to get involved to so they are not having to cook every day if that's not something that brings you joy. So I think like all of those little things that is you know, almost environmental also



Caitlin Donovan

They are envi yeah, they are environmental, it's massively important and so so this is your permission to get a new pan should you want one and this is your permission to throw out the mug that you are always trying to avoid in the back of your cabinet. If you don't have enough mugs and you always end up using it please go to TJ Maxx and spend 499 pick them all up bring a wet wipe with you because COVID still and we're not out of this delta variant you know we have to be careful but bring a wet wipe with you and put your hand and hold every damn mug until you find the one that just makes you feel however it is you want to feel relaxed, cozy Queen-like whatever you're into I'm not here to judge what you need. But do the small things. Do the small things.


Carolyn Brown

Yeah, the little things you know as big as the environment is the little things really add up to and may not be when you reach for you know, whatever it is so think like immediate environment just as big as you know, more macro environment.


Caitlin Donovan

Absolutely. And I'm going to point out you guys can't see me but behind me there's a bookshelf and on the edge of the bookshelf is my book and I do that obviously because it's good to have my book on video but I also do that because behind that book is a book cover of this man's face with like extra sets of eyes going down his cheeks and it's really fucking creepy sitting here and seeing his face and being disturbed by it. So I put my book over to avoid seeing that book cover brilliant right so we're talking about feeling


Carolyn Brown

Yeah, I feel like we all need to go through our whole house and make that and just make a mental list of the things that are kind of making us a little crazy and do something about them whether you toss it or you know move it or whatever because that yeah on a daily basis it's like we had like rugs up here that were just like chill you know, just not meant to be there. They're all rolled up and you know, no one had thought to move them and I'm like that is locate but for like three months that just crept me crazy.


Caitlin Donovan

Why are we doing things that drive ourselves drive us crazy for three months like


Carolyn Brown

Exactly not useful.


Caitlin Donovan

So this is the big environment episode. And I keep stopping to remind you to take this into your life because this is a really actionable episode. This is not just listening to us talk about it. This is really, really, really important. So I want you to just make a list of two to three things that you can switch out change upgrade right now to make your life a little bit better maybe you need a pad under you know on your desk under your stuff so that it doesn't crack or to make it prettier maybe you really need to wallpaper that one wall like maybe you need a can of paint. Maybe you need a new mug, maybe you need it whatever it happens to be within your means within what's available to you within your possibilities and make that change now because those small changes over time they really really add up not only are they gonna make you eat more but they're gonna make you burn out more which matters.



Carolyn Brown

Actually, that's interesting because when I moved here to Boulder which of course was for the environment we moved into this really cute little funky house and it was like the problem with it too, in my opinion, was that it was like rainbow-colored so the entire downstairs when you walked in it was like these hues of art like actual Orange Yellow Red the kitchen was this really dark red that it like kept me awake and it was so it was just like gave me anxiety when we first moved in they left the previous owners left a ton of furniture for us which is great they also left some artwork and there were like these huge aliens


Caitlin Donovan

I remember this


Carolyn Brown

It was I posted photos on Instagram because my boyfriend was like maybe you should keep it it's not so bad and I'm like this is terrifying. So yeah but the we got rid of that really quickly on like day one moving here but then the pink colors weren't really something I thought we could do or subletting at first and there wasn't I didn't know what to do about it. But it was like really sort of impacting my happiness because that was what I was seeing every day and it was like sponge-painted orange. We have like a bright green you know laundry room it was like


Caitlin Donovan

I mean my whole living room is bright green but I love it.


Carolyn Brown

But it's about it's a vibe any other good style, so like yes, this could be amazing. If it was like a tiled wall, but it was like a lot who sponge-painted like in the 80s. So it was just, you know, not just not making me happy. Yeah, it's good on the negative. But we finally when we decided to say we're like we'll say if we can repaint and you know, they were like, Oh, totally. And the house Turner was like for the record, just you know, I didn't paint it. You know how bad it was, but it has completely changed my experience of this house to have it you know, it's all pretty much white. Because we had to go simple since we're renters here but that that small change has it that environment impacts like, overall well being I'm happy when I walked in now I'm, you know, frustrated at the ugly red walls in the kitchen. And I can take good photos and you know, it has like this trickle-down effect into it.


Caitlin Donovan

Yeah, exactly. Exactly. So if you've been saying, Oh, it's not that important, I can deal with it. These are things that we say, Oh, it's not that important. I can deal with it. I can handle it. If you've been handling something or dealing with something. Please change it.


Carolyn Brown

Yeah, and of course it's not like you know, it's not a life or death thing, of course, grateful that but like, can you paint a wall? like totally that? Yes, it's gonna make it feel fun or wallpaper or something that that stick on wallpaper?



Caitlin Donovan

Exactly it changes everything, it changes everything. It's so important. So that was the environment episode. But before we have a little bit more time, and I want to talk about food because your game and because also, I probably need to hire you. But that's that's a separate conversation. Food and clutter. That's one thing. But when we're burnt out, and we've talked about this before, he our our gut bacteria gets all messed up because stress fucks with your gut bacteria. And your decision making powers are diminished because the prefrontal cortex in your brain has shrunk. So your brain is shrunk, you're having higher cravings, you're worse at making decisions and your gut bacteria is not great. So it's sort of like a kind of a really shitty place as far as nutrition is concerned. What are the easiest things we can do to protect ourselves when we're like when we really like can't do much like when we're like limited?


Carolyn Brown

Well I think of food as medicine, you know, everything you eat becomes every cell in your body so it can be you know, it can be healing or it can be potentially exacerbating the issue and so I think my first thought with that is especially if we're talking about gut bacteria is to just simply try to add one fermented food per day and so that so I really think of addition when you're feeling a little bit paralyzed like what can we add in this isn't the time to say like, let's go on a sugar cleanse or anything like that. But can you throw in some you know, fermented you even like pickles, for example, but some fermented veggies or miso on you know, fish or chicken or can you have a cuccia so that would be like my starting point of like,


Caitlin Donovan

Can I have a confession? Hmm, I hate kombucha.


Carolyn Brown

What? Okay, so that's up. I'm free. I mean, I kind of hate like some fermented veggies. Yeah, I also listen to that don't force-feed yourself something just because it's healthy.


Caitlin Donovan

I tried to I was like, you know, those big jugs that you can get at Whole Foods, and they're like, ooh, we're getting close sugar kombucha. Yay. And I was like, I'm just gonna buy a big one. I'm gonna drink it enough until I get used to it. That was my plan. Because it tastes


Carolyn Brown

Really like vinegary.



Caitlin Donovan

Yes and I hate vinegar. Okay, there you go. So then it goes that but me so I can have all day long sausage.



Carolyn Brown

Yeah, so choose the ones that you like, that's such an important part of this too. Like, don't do things that you hate, you know, just in the name of health. But on the vinegar. Apple cider vinegar also is really good for gut bacteria. So if you're someone who can throw that even into salad dressing, yeah, I could do that. That sort of thing is great. So that would be a starting point. Also, just make sure you're hydrated. When we're dehydrated. We're just grouchy here especially women. There's lots of research on this that it really affects women's decision-making ability to focus and mood overall. So get a giant water bottle and put it on your desk. Pretty one Yeah, pretty much something that you like again, environment. What do you like looking at Um, so that's another big one and then make sure you're eating consistently too. So a lot of times anxiety stress can be really intertwined with blood sugar. So when we're not eating frequently enough, we're maybe skipping breakfast hopefully if you're really stressed you're not trying like intermittent fasting in addition to that, but that


Caitlin Donovan

Backup Wait, wait, wait, say that again. I say that really loud and clear that that statement.


Carolyn Brown

Please don't try any crazy diets or extreme eating trends while feeling really stressed. burnout adds to your stress levels. So we want to sort of want to really be focusing on decreasing stress. And many of these things, whether it's it's funky eating habits, severe intermittent fasting, going keto, or doing like HIIT training did really intense exercise actually ends up increasing our cortisol, increasing our stress hormones. So sort of doing the opposite of what you might have hoped to.



Caitlin Donovan

Does everybody listening gentler is better


Carolyn Brown

Sense of gentle nutrition, slow nutrition. And yeah, so that would be the other thing of just making sure you're eating consistently eat a real breakfast, or a lunch, a real snack and a real dinner, too. And making sure you're really having something for three to four hours. So our blood sugar loves that. And again, like our blood sugar, and our stress hormones are very intertwined and answered of when we're too hungry. don't even realize it. Actually, oftentimes I see anxiety really spike.



Caitlin Donovan

Yeah. So I want to talk about this for a second. Because so often, when I get on the call, when I get on an initial call, or start coaching people, they're like, Yeah, but I've gained weight, and I need to really watch my food right now. And I'm always like, um, how about you just eat extra fruit and vegetable right now? How about we just start there, because this is not the time.


Carolyn Brown

I love that you're saying that. And I am so grateful to reiterate that of like, it is not always the time and place to focus on nutrition. I love nutrition. I think it's like medicine. I think it's super, it's definitely a wellness puzzle piece. It's not the only puzzle piece.


Caitlin Donovan

Yeah, and if you can't think and you can't food prep, and you can't then just try to get some berries this week. You know, like, try to eat a berry, please.


Carolyn Brown

Let's go drink some water.


Caitlin Donovan

Go drink some water. Like, girl. What's isn't that a title of a book?


Carolyn Brown

Is a girl wash your face. But yeah, yeah, girl, girl, daughter is our book.


Caitlin Donovan

And that's really, the other thing that I wanted to talk to you about today is that you do a thing a few times a year called detox ish. Now, detox ish is wonderful. I did it in May, I found it incredibly helpful. And you have another one coming up. And I want you to talk about what it is and why the ish.


Carolyn Brown

Yes, I love that. So detox is just a way to really make food a priority for the week and really clean things up. And then cut any extras we cut out gluten, sugar and alcohol. But the real focus is on what are you adding, it's making, it's having homemade meals, it's a food prep for the week, and just taking the decision-making away from you for a second. On some level, even though it is a week where you're going to be more focused on it, you're you know, you do have a plan for the week. It's all real whole foods that are just going to be 100% nourishing. So it's just like, it's meant to be a really take awesome Care of Yourself week, you get a ton of recipes, you get daily emails from us, you get group support, we have a great Facebook group. But the ish is really what's important about it. And it's something I work on, you know, all year round with clients, which is that if something goes off track, if you're on a you know, you're out and about for the day, and you forgot your lunch at home, and all you have is a Chipola or something like that. Or if you're if you are out and you know you're at a birthday party and you end up having a one like a glass of wine that doesn't undo all of your progress and hard work and commitment. It's what you do next. And it's that sort of instant getting back on track. It's teaching you about resilience, more than anything and and really, yes, continuing to take great care of yourself the next day. Even if you had a slice of pizza. On this week's plan. It's like of course it's not the goal and let's like act with a lot of sort of love and care for our bodies. And again, like just always making the next great decision you possibly can. Yeah, so I think the issue is is the important part of like, you know, if you end up you're not super proud of her that wasn't part of the plan. I'm not throwing it all out the window.


Caitlin Donovan

Yeah, and I loved this because it was the first time I've ever done anything. I come from a dieting family, you know, my mom was always dieting. And then I ruptured my Achilles and spent a few months in bed gained a bunch of weight Two years later, it's still there. And everything that I've ever done around food has been very harsh on rules. And this was the first thing that felt to me the same as burnout, recovery. It felt gentle, it felt kind. It felt like a break, even though it was extra work.


Carolyn Brown

I'm so glad to hear you say that. I mean, I know I think in the beginning maybe I remember hearing from you a little bit that like I don't remember if it was sugar Like having some timing rules. Yeah. And what do you remember exactly what it was hard for you?


Caitlin Donovan

Oh, the portion sizes were too not big enough for me. Okay.


Carolyn Brown

But that is a perfect example also of like taking information, you know, that you know is like healthy and serving you and then adapting it for yourself. So we're like, okay, cool, make the persons bigger. Yeah, easy, easy, things like that. But that also, that was true for some people. I know what some of the timing rules and we do have some timing, you know, suggestions with that, that's like a 12 hour eating real first bite to last night. So if you start getting an eight, stop eating by eight, and like, if that if that doesn't work for your body, your body is way wiser than any nutrition expert. So taking some external information and internal information saying that I mean, so like, that's like the trend here. But yeah, that's how you can make sort of the most empowered best decisions for your personal being.


Caitlin Donovan

Yeah, and for me, it was like this, you know, I've seen rules before. And when I see food rules, I feel like I'm supposed to fight like I grew up in a household where we had a rule around how many cookies you could eat, like the serving size was to, you're allowed to have to, you know, so when I see a serving size, I'm like, Well, that's it. It really messes with my head, like, well, that's what it says that this is supposed to serve. This is what's before servings, this frittata, like I just I wrote for an hour and a half, three times a week in the morning, you're me and I don't eat breakfast before I go, like I just burned 1000 calories before 7:30am. Yeah, I can't eat a quarter of a frittata with vegetables. Like that's not going to cut it. You know?


Carolyn Brown

And I think and that's, that's such a good point. It's like everything should be individualized. And it's like, we're working one on one during that week, you would get that immediate feedback. Yeah. But that's something that


Caitlin Donovan

But I did get immediate feedback. That's that. I think that's the point. Like I wrote in right away, I said, you guys, listen, this is what this is why I love detox session. This is why the Facebook group is so useful, because I was like, I'm afraid of this, like, ah, like I and I knew that would be an answer. And I knew what the answer would be. But I needed to say the thing out loud. And within I mean, you know, we're good at social media around here. So within a couple hours, you were like to just eat more. And I was like, okay, you know, like I needed permission


Carolyn Brown

To do that. Yeah, yeah. And I think you know, there is something about doing a group week like that, that's just sort of like you don't want to be messing it up or anything like that. And like it's great practice to for like asking what you need and figuring it out. And then hopefully that serves you down the line to like sometimes, you know, I was even thinking today a little bit about you know, outsourcing our power to healers, and to nutritionists, even into therapists and things like that and like sometimes it's great to bounce things off of someone and at the end of the day, like you you have to start knowing yourself best and no one else has the answers which like kind of broke my heart when I found that out. But I found out that my therapist was a human or my parents were human. But I think that that's also you know, it's it's so key like you You are the one who actually figured it out you know yeah, there's a great blend and double quote of like stop asking people for people for director stop asking for directions from people who have never been where you're going where


Caitlin Donovan

It's going yeah, yeah, and I think it's also why I talk on the podcast pretty frequently about things that I'm doing wrong right now when it comes to burnout. Why I say things like you know, I was not exhausted at the end of my workday I was like well then it means I have extra energy and I should could do more like that just happened I've been recovered for years but that just happened to me five minutes ago like that was this week. And so I think it's it's important to know that first of all, we are fallible those of us on the healing side You know like we are not perfect, we make mistakes and I think the difference that I've found as far as burnout and my response to it and my action toward it is that I'm just not so judgmental anymore. In that area of my life I haven't figured that out yet about food I have figured it out around burnout when I noticed myself do that I was like oh that's silly. Yeah. And that was the end of it. The story ended it wasn't a four-week-long like exploration around why my habits are like this and what I need to fix them but no, it's just like oh, I noticed that I'm not gonna do that okay, it's over


Carolyn Brown

Totally Yeah, I found myself this morning went to church I went to Trader Joe's yesterday and I had this little container of like chocolate-covered almonds with like sea salt but they're so good and I'm like eating them as I'm making coffee this morning. Oh yeah, I know this isn't serving you know my kids but then I move on have coffee have a party doing like some green juice powder stuff like I still do all of that stuff. You have a normal breakfast like move on with the day


Caitlin Donovan

But I had chocolate-covered almonds this morning get over it.


Carolyn Brown

Yeah, they're delicious. So I think like there becomes less judgment around it we can move on faster, but I definitely have those other areas of life. Yeah. And, and even can the pendulum can swing For me with nutrition also, yeah, where I said, I don't feel so good or like is and I'm like Who am I to be advising people on this right now? You know, but also like the Ramadan, you know, like, it's we're human, we're human, this beautiful thing.


Caitlin Donovan

It is a beautiful thing. And we're humans. That's a beautiful thing. And we deserve beautiful environments. And Carolyn, you have a detox this week coming up. Shortly, we get the info on that. And then we will say goodbye to our listeners to


Carolyn Brown

Our next detox week is August 20. Oops, and then I forget the date on it. But it is going to be a seven-day program. And we'll put the information in the show notes. I think it's the 16th. But whatever the case is of that week. So that is going to be a seven-day program, it's going to be incredible. Just follow up, you'll get recipes, you'll get a grocery shopping list, you'll get sort of your rules, as we call them. Things we want you to sort of keep in mind, keep in the back of your head, and you'll get the amazing community to community support, you'll get one on one or you'll get emails sent to your inbox every morning with a sort of Tip of the Day of focus of Hey, today go try to you know, drink 100 ounces of water, sort of like daily little tips. And we tried to keep it super fun and engaging. And it's just seven days of taking amazing care of yourself. So please, please join us. We would love to have you be part of our Indigo family. And yeah, Cait, I hope you'll be joining us


Caitlin Donovan

Again. I will I will. I love it. I love detox this week. It's now like something that I'm waiting for.


Carolyn Brown

I can awesome. Wow. Yeah, we hear that a lot. Actually. People are like I want to keep this going or continue using the recipes.


Caitlin Donovan

I use the recipes. Still. I had the 10 people the 10 day Buddha bowls all week this week.


Carolyn Brown

Amazing. That makes me so happy. Yeah. So you try to keep it fresh and seasonal and really simple to so we're not like you know, we don't expect to master some


Caitlin Donovan

Of the recipes literally took me less than 45 seconds.


Carolyn Brown

Whoo. That's a great Yes.


Caitlin Donovan

Yeah. The blackberry chia pudding. Oh, yeah, blend, pour. And I made double and I poured it into things and I put it in my fridge and I was like, This is amazing.


Carolyn Brown

That's awesome. And that's it's also just good reinforcement of like, taking good care of yourself doesn't always have to be this huge thing. Cooking meal prepping any of it. It can be really, really easy.


Caitlin Donovan

It can be easier. Yes, absolutely. Carolyn,


Caitlin Donovan

I love you. Thank you.


Carolyn Brown

I love you. Thank you so much. This is such a blast to chat about.


Caitlin Donovan

Alright FRIED, we're out. Until next time.


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