The Design Business Show 217: Recovering From Burnout and Creating Your Ideal Career Lifestyle with Hunter Lowder

Director : Melissa Burkheimer | February 27, 2023
Check out episode 217 of The Design Business Show with Hunter Lowder to learn about recovering from burnout

Hunter Lowder is co-owner of Tortoise & The Bear, a business strategy, operations, and mindset coaching company that supports visionaries in bringing their wild and crazy dreams to life. Coupling her past business experience as CEO of a multi-million dollar company with mindful coaching approaches, Hunter helps service-based business owners create and prioritize a strategic plan to grow their impact and move their business forward in a sustainable way.

After suffering severe burnout as a CEO, Hunter is passionate about building a business in alignment with her values. When she’s not helping clients fine tune their operations, she’s likely dancing and singing karaoke with her husband, feeding her son’s football team, or hanging out at the beach with her fur babies.

Here’s what we covered on the episode:

Experiencing Burnout + How to Cope  

  • Hunter shares that she ran a luxury wedding venue in southern California, but towards the end of her career, she was having a lot of physical problems and realized she wasn’t taking care of herself because of her mindset
  • There were two options for Hunter, she could leave her career to heal or have a heart attack at age 35, so she decided to leave
  • When Hunter left her career, she didn’t know who she was anymore because her career became her identity, so she started working with a career life coach and dove into personality assessments 
  • It took Hunter 6 months to a year to realize that she needed to be kinder to her body and try her hardest every single day, but also forgive herself if she didn’t hit her goals, unlike her overachiever, type A old self would have
  • For the first couple of years after Hunter’s burnout, it took a lot of practice to figure out what intuition was: what was her body saying yes or no to versus what was just fear
  • We talk about reverse engineering your business, where you look at the big picture of where you want to go and break it down into smaller chunks that feel doable
  • Hunter helps her clients close the gap between today and their goal by creating SMART(Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-based) goals and breaking them down into each year, quarter, month, week, and day
  • You need to permit yourself to work in the way that works best for you, and as women, Hunter says we need to consider our cycles when figuring out what works best for us and not plan anything stressful during that week if it affects you in a certain way

Tortoise & The Bear + VIP Days 

  • After Hunter’s burnout, she knew she wanted to help women like herself: Type A overachievers and those recovering from burnout, so she got a ton of coaching certificates but realized she wasn’t meant to be a coach
  • Hunter got a job as an executive operations assistant to help dip her toes back into the workforce, and got promoted to operations manager after 3 months and is still with them today
  • While working with this company, Hunter decided she would still take on clients and ended up working 50-hour weeks, which isn’t what she wanted to be doing  
  • How Hunter was able to pivot into strategy instead of being the implementor and got her director of operations certification to help translate brick-and-mortar business strategy to online business strategy
  • Now, Hunter offers VIP Days for small business owners who are looking to have a sales and visibility strategy based on their personality 
  • Hunter learned that she was a manifesting generator which made so much sense to her because she loves being interviewed, answering questions, and talking to people, but where she struggles is creating the content when no one is interacting with her, like on a blog or social media post
  • One of Hunter’s main forms of content is podcasting, and she shares that she’s creating her own podcast
  • Something Hunter recommends to all her clients is content repurposing – find what you love to do and repurpose it on all platforms
  • A goal of Hunter’s after her son graduates is to have a nomadic life where she can live from anywhere and work from anywhere
  • Hunter typically works with creative solopreneurs who are struggling with consistency, usually a lot of women who are on their 2nd career
  • How Hunter’s VIP Days help set clients up for the next steps in their business, which usually includes hiring a virtual assistant, scaling the business, doing group programs, etc.
  • One of the biggest lessons in business and in life that Hunter has learned is that the only thing she has control over is how she reacts to things  
  • Hunter feels that TikTok and reels on Instagram are refreshing because they are raw and real
  • At, you can find a free customer journey audit from Hunter, where she will give you suggestions and ideas to implement to help make your leads, sales, and marketing efforts easier and more consistent
  • Connect with Hunter on Instagram 


Links mentioned:

Tortoise & The Bear Website

Customer Journey Audit 

Connect with Hunter on Instagram 

Connect with Hunter on TikTok


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