Erika Ferszt: Eyesight Issues, Mood Regulation, and Burning Out When You're 'Happy'


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By Caitlin Donovan and Cait Donovan. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.

“I lost my vision working for a company that provides vision,” says Erika Ferszt, Founder of Moodally and former Media & Digital Director at Ray-Ban. During her ten years at Ray Ban, Erica loved her job, loved the people she was working with and for, and loved her life...or so she thought. Then, one morning Erika woke up with no vision in her right eye, and the immense stress of her work life began to catch up with her. While Erika thought she was “happy,” her body was telling her otherwise.

After doctors concluded that her vision loss was stress-related and due to her working lifestyle, Erika decided to quit her job and re-evaluate her priorities. She returned to school to study the effects of stress on the mind, body and brain and learned about mood induction, the scientific process of altering participants’ mood states. This inspired Erika to create Moodally, a company that brings this approach beyond the bounds of scientific studies and offers innovative, science-backed mood management solutions for the workplace.

Tune into this week’s episode of FRIED. The Burnout Podcast to hear more about how Erika’s burnout story led to the founding of her company. Learn about the science behind Erika’s vision loss, how our thoughts (whether conscious or subconscious) dramatically impact our bodily reactions, and how our mood informs just about every aspect of our day.


• “I lost my vision working for a company that provides vision.” (13:13-13:17)

• “I think one of the things that’s probably most misunderstood about burnout is that . . the assumption is that it’s a psychological breakdown. And that can be one of the ways that it manifests, but it is a physiological issue.” (18:09-18:25)

• “One of the first things that I learned to do [after quitting my job] was to acknowledge what I needed and not feel guilty about giving it to me.” (20:25-20:32)

• “Who are you when the title goes away, when the employees go away, when the money goes away?” (23:48-23:58)

• “When you don’t know where you’re going, you don’t have to see the final just have to see enough road in front of you to get you to the next step.” (29:10-29:25)

• “Where everything ladders up to is your thoughts. The thoughts are sort of the command center for the reactions in your body. There is a cognitive element to stress: you subconsciously and automatically decide that whatever is coming at you is greater than your capacity to handle.” (35:02-35:25)

• “Music is the easiest gimme I can give you ....Outside of laughter, it’s the fastest technique to shift you into a better mood.” (52:08-52:20)




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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158 episodes