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  • Writer's pictureCait Donovan

#straightfromcait: Healing a Burnt Out Brain

The steps for healing from burnout are different from what is required to prevent burnout. When you are burnt out and experiencing chronic stress, the part of your brain responsible for executive functioning actually loses neurons. This means that you may struggle more with memory loss and keeping up with all of the day to day responsibilities that come with adulting. In today’s #straightfromcait episode, Cait Donovan, host and burnout speaker, shares her tips for healing a burnt out brain.

In order to heal your brain and regain executive functioning skills, you should aim to make progress slowly. You cannot undo 20 years of chronic stress in three weeks and expect your brain to function like new. It takes time to heal and it is best to start small. No one can completely focus and be productive when they are hungry, thirsty, tired, or need to use the bathroom. Even just fixing things like your sleep patterns, making it a habit to eat regularly, and letting yourself pee when you need to are huge for building a healthy foundation.

Chronic stress often leads to burnout, and burnout actively shrinks the part of your brain that handles executive functioning. Healing your brain will take time and intentionality. Start small with activities like brain games on your phone to help improve memory and devoting time to foundational self-care.


The steps that are required to heal from burnout are different than those that are needed to prevent burnout.” (1:46-1:52 | Cait)

The part of your brain that is responsible for executive functioning loses neurons with chronic stress.” (3:21-3:26 | Cait)

“You're gonna make the most progress with your burnout recovery when you are aiming for things that are just slightly out of your current ability. What I see happening all the time in burnout recovery is that people want to rewind 20 years of stress and damage in three weeks and get back functions that are too many steps ahead of where they are.” (5:31-5:53 | Cait)

If you do everything for children, then that interferes with their executive functioning development because they're not being asked to task their brain to learn a new thing.” (8:46-8:56 | Cait)

Executive functioning skills are at their best when we are at our best.” (9:23-9:28 | Cait)

We never expect a young child or a student to be able to grow and learn when they're tired and hungry. Why are you expecting yourself to?” (10:13-10:22 | Cait)




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:


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