top of page
  • Writer's pictureCait Donovan

#straightfromcait: Burnout, Depression, Anxiety, and Medication

Updated: Feb 21, 2023

Have you been feeling numb and mentally disconnected from your life? This is a very normal way to feel when you are experiencing burnout. There is a natural overlap that occurs between symptoms of burnout and symptoms of depression and anxiety. In today’s #straightfromcait episode, Cait, host and burnout speaker, talks about the debate on whether to use mental health medications to treat the depression and anxiety symptoms that can occur with burnout.

Sometimes people worry that it would be cheating to use medications to treat their burnout. They think they should be able to do it all on their own and may feel uncomfortable about the concept of trying mental health medications. However, you are serving no one by refusing to utilize all the resources at your disposal. Sure, exercise and eating right and building a support system will all help you improve, but when you’re burnt out it is extremely difficult to engage with your life in that way. So if you have access to a therapist or a psychiatrist and are diagnosed with a mental health condition and your doctor wishes to prescribe medication for you, you should try it! It is not unfair to anyone for you to use the privileges that you have available to you in order for you to recover.

This is your permission to use any advantage and resource you have access to. Go see that therapist, get that prescription your insurance covers, do whatever you need to do in order to get yourself back on track. The more you heal from burnout the more you will be able to use that energy to give back and help others who are struggling. The more people collectively heal from burnout the more we can work together to end burnout culture.


In the working definition of burnout as it currently exists, which I personally find to be incomplete, it tells us that mental distance is about work. What I've found is that that sense of disconnectedness, that separation from life, occurs across the entire life spectrum.” (2:50-3:09 | Cait)

This distance, this numbness, this inability to feel close or connected to people is often in a strange overlap place with depression.” (4:26-4:37 | Cait)

“I got caught up in this idea that most medication can be avoided, and a lot of people I know in the Chinese medicine world are pretty anti-prescription overall. Over time, I've learned to realize that this is not really my stance. I know the research that says that exercise, good food, proper rest and building a support community are just as good for depression as medication if not better, in some cases. But I also think that it is absolutely bonkers that we would ask someone who was depressed to try and do those things. You don't have the wherewithal when you're burnt out or depressed to engage in your life in that way. So if you need medication to be able to do the things that you need to do to improve your situation, and you've been diagnosed, and you've been offered a prescription, you should at least try it.” (5:47-6:40 | Cait)

Do not try to hero your way through burnout by being tough and not relying on options that could make it easier for you.” (6:54-7:01 | Cait)

The more that I use my privileges to my advantage, the more I can serve the people I'm here to serve, the better I feel, and the better my life becomes.” (10:30-10:42 | Cait)

“If you have access to making something better for yourself take it, use it, get your energy back, spend that money honey and get that prescription that's covered by your insurance. Take every single advantage that you have and then when you're feeling strong enough and fulfilled enough and happy enough, spread that sh*t around like wildfire.” (14:34-14:52 | Cait)

“We don't end burnout culture by making a massive culture shift. We end burnout culture by not participating in it anymore. We don't participate in it anymore when we heal. So use your advantages, every single one you've got, so that you can reach behind you and pull the next person up in any way that you can.” (17:09-17:32 | Cait)




Need a speaker for your event? If you would love to book Cait for your event, connect with her here:

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:


Couldn’t Load Comments
It looks like there was a technical problem. Try reconnecting or refreshing the page.
bottom of page