About a decade ago, I realized that my life had become unmanageable. I was overweight, unhealthy, burnt out, and miserable. Gut-wrenchingly miserable. I felt empty inside like I was on a treadmill with no (apparent) way to get off. I had lots of things going for me: meaningful relationships, a high paying job, a beautiful home. Yet, there was a huge void inside me. I had no idea what it was. I didn't want to lose what I had, but I wanted so much more out of life. I wanted to know what I was supposed to be doing. I wanted to know why I was here. I wanted to know how to live a full life. Going to work every day and looking forward to evenings, weekends, and one or two vacations a year just didn't make sense to me anymore. There HAD to be something more significant.
My career had been a successful one. After I graduated from University at 22, I entered the corporate world, where I stayed for 13 years. I was outstanding at my job, tirelessly pushing myself to be better, taking on anything and everything thrown at me, and always striving to exceed the most unreasonable expectations. This worked wonders for me in my career, climbing the corporate ladder quicker than most, and rising to the most senior levels within a world-renowned organization. I had the level of success in "Corporate America" that only a few get to enjoy.
Regardless of my professional success, I was never enough. I lived in an emotional prison of comparing myself to others, working long hours, and continually living in some form of stress, anxiety, or overwhelm. Work had become what defined me. I was obsessed with proving myself, pleasing people, and pushing forward aimlessly in my career. I was validated only by those around me, fueled solely by praise, and focused only on what was wrong with my life. The only escape was when I was overeating, drinking, or ironically... working.
In 2014, at age 30, I paid the price and endured a nervous breakdown. Not the kind of "panic" a little boy experiences when he's away from home for the first time and misses his mom; I'm talking about a full-blown meltdown. I collapsed in the stairwell of my offices and was in a vegetative state for 24 hours. It was an extreme physiological response to prolonged psychological pain. The experience was brutal; it destroyed me. It realized my greatest fears, and it defined rock bottom for me.
Have you ever heard that your worst days are often your best days?
Well, that was the case here. I always had a feeling inside that I was supposed to be doing something "bigger." On some level, I always thought that I was living a lie and not doing what I was destined to do. But I never had the courage or the clarity to act on these feelings and explore other avenues.
It took the events of 2014 to change all that. It sparked a remarkable journey of self-discovery and personal development. In two short years, I rebuilt my body, rewrote my beliefs, reprogrammed my thinking, and rewired my brain. I tapped into my inner strength, woke up my dormant spirituality, and uncovered my purpose.
What I learned and put into practice helped me reconnect with the parts of me that I had lost; my joy, creativity, inspiration, presence, connection... what I would describe as my personal power. It also allowed me to connect with a power greater than myself – my Creator.
The process helped me develop the skills I needed to effectively manage my inner world. Most importantly, it helped me realize that I wasn't alone. That somehow, within the vastness of life itself, was an intelligence that was working for me, supporting me, and designing me overtime to deliver my greatness to the world.
Years later, I have a new obsession: Personal Development.
I have passionately pursued personal development for more than six years to uncover the secrets to living an extraordinary life. I've studied many of the central teachings and topics spanning the ages across science, philosophy, religion, spirituality, metaphysics, quantum physics, and neuroscience. I've had numerous mentors, coaches, therapists, and teachers. I've developed a daily practice of meditation, visualization, gratitude, and transformative personal techniques that support me in waking up each day knowing who I am and how to live life as the powerful and loving man I am at my core.
As I began to live each day, freer and freer from the habitual patterns of thinking that kept me trapped, something even more magical happened... I discovered a secret. One so simple and powerful that it has the potential to change your life the moment you learn it. How you feel in any given moment has nothing to do with what's going on around you — it has everything to do with what's going on inside you. We've all had it backward. We think that how we feel is down to the circumstances of our life. Only the truth is that how we feel is entirely up to us. From the moment we wake up to the moment we rest our heads at night, everything is up to us; our thoughts, perceptions, emotions, and reactions. We determine our experiences from moment to moment because we shape our world with our thoughts and beliefs. This is the astonishing reality of how life really works. Our job in this life isn't to acquire as many materials as possible to prove our worth to others. Our job in this life is to master the inner game to grow and have more to give.
Through research that I have conducted and interaction with countless stressed out, burnt-out clients, I have synthesized fundamental tools and strategies to maximize our capabilities as human beings and immeasurably increase our level of effectiveness and fulfillment in our work and in our lives. I have combined scientific, psychological, philosophical, and spiritual concepts into an approach that literally rewires your brain and unlocks the untapped reservoir of human potential and power within us all... what I call an Emotional Ninja. And it's available to each of us.
There are no exceptions. Gifted to all of us is a creative technology with a power and a capacity far greater than anything ever imagined, yet most have only scratched the surface of tapping into their full potential. We need someone to show us how to utilize this technology and access the untapped reservoir of human potential and power within us all. It's time to start believing and living it. I hope you will join me on this extraordinary journey.
Be Yourself & Live Fully, Devan Bailey