Angus Baynham-McColl’s Mission,
“To assist you while you create the most glorious life possible for yourself!”
I started my spiritual coaching practice this year,
However, I would say that my spiritual journey really took off 7 years ago in 2010 when I developed an intense interest in spirituality. I started this journey in order to search for answers to my biggest questions.
I believe that my life is only worth living if I live a life of truth.
After being rejected by a girl I was attracted to when I was 16 years old, I was left with an unfulfilled and unknown desire and this desire was the catalyst for my spiritual growth.
I actually couldn’t be fulfilled without this girl’s attention and I was constantly bothering her in an effort to get her attention. In 2010 I was warned by the law to stop bugging her, she had had enough of my attention because it was annoying and she was also concerned for her well-being. Looking back I don’t blame her for being worried, but I was ignorant as to how my behavior was affecting other people.
I was the classic example of the guy who couldn’t let go.
But what was THE REAL THING that I really had trouble letting go of?
This is the million dollar question that I will answer as this page goes on,
In the meantime I became very interested in spirituality because I wanted to find meaning and hope in my life in the midst of my deep rooted despair that came from being rejected and shut down by this girl.
I was in so much pain deep down, I didn’t even notice it.
From 2010 to late 2012 she was still the focus of my obsession, but through spiritual studies and hockey I suppressed the obsession and distracted myself from it.
After the summer of 2012 where I was the DSM of my Army Cadet Camp; I had my first manic episode. A manic episode is the result of an extremely intense desire and at the center of this desire was the focus of my obsession; again it was the person I couldn’t let go of. My sense is that because I kept everything bottled up for a year it became a manic phase.
Even though I was warned nearly 2 years before by the law to stop bothering this person I sent her a letter and some gifts, I was then charged with harassment and soon after I was diagnosed with manic depressive disorder type 1. This happened just before I wound up in hospital due to my first manic episode.
I was given medication because the doctors saw me as someone with a mental disorder and through a scientific lens they thought that the meds would “fix me.”
The medication didn’t help me let go of the pain I needed to let go of, they merely suppressed my ability to feel my emotions.
Back On Track (For A Little While)
In 2013 I finished high school and got a job working at a gym, and with criminal charges I thought I would be damned for life. But I realized that success isn’t the result of your resume, it’s the result of your contribution to the world. I gained a lot of inspiration that summer from Jim Rohn and I decided to do my best in life again. I knew that even though I had made a mistake in my life, if I could be the best contributor like I was in cadets, I would be just fine.
One of my officers in cadets told me “don’t let this discourage you from applying for jobs.”
I got back the confidence I had in cadets, and my job at the gym gave me a purpose. I wanted to become a personal trainer – this is not so different from being a spiritual development coach like I am today actually. We just focus on different aspects of personal growth.
This was in 2013 – when asked in the Gym interview where I wanted to be in 5 years – I said “I want to be a personal development coach.”
That was 4 years ago, and I’m making it there now!
The Next “Fall off Course”
I felt angry about my diagnosis and having to take medication in August 2013 and stopped taking it.
As a result of the withdrawal from meds, I relapsed into a manic episode and once again I got arrested because I tried to communicate with the person I couldn’t let go of.
A manic person has a lack of inhibition when it comes to controlling their behavior and a lack of anticipation for consequences that could arise from behavior. When I was struggling with mania I would consider myself very impulsive, my thoughts would race, and I would be filled with the feeling of desire. In the process I would set lofty goals that had no basis in reality.
I claim that mania is the minds way of compensating for despair that it doesn’t want to face.
Despair is a feeling that must be felt in the process of reaching acceptance. My problem was I escaped from the despair of letting go rather than embracing it.
My Journey Through the Mental Health System
A week after my arrest I was transferred to a Mental Health Centre for an assessment to see if I was criminally responsible for my conduct and to get the medical help that I needed at the same time.
I got a new doctor who is an excellent listener, respects his patients, and acts reasonable. At the time he got me back on track by helping me understand why medication is necessary if I want to get back home, and stay well. He took time to understand what I was going through, and even though he didn’t have all the answers; he convinced me that medication serves my best interest at the present time.
A month after my assessment started I was found “Not Criminally Responsible” for my actions because I couldn’t tell right from wrong while I was in a state of intense mania.
This was a major relief to me because it meant I wouldn’t have a criminal record.
I remained in medical rehab until Christmas of 2013 where I was then sent home.
It was then that I said “screw spirituality” in some not so nice terms and I didn’t come back to spirituality for a while.
I became rather hopeless and in a state of despair. I thought I would never work again, and all I did for a whole year was watch hockey, and play Xbox.
After my hospitalization I no longer had to work to meet my basic needs, I was on disability and didn’t even see the point in working.
I had no real hope in my life, I just felt depressed all the time. This was my quarter life crisis.
In 2015 I decided to listen to music, work out, listen to motivational speakers, and use my time to better myself.
I wasn’t going to give up on my life; I was going to make the most out of it. In fact I want to be a motivational speaker in the mental health field, entrepreneur field, and spiritual field.
Jim Rohn said; “Self Education will make you a fortune.”
So in 2015 I really took that quote to heart and spent my days at Chapters reading books for free on subjects like psychology, philosophy, business, spirituality and many more. I loved the process of educating myself, and self education is still something I do to this day. I think I will be educating myself for life!
I also joined the Bud Busters hockey team and we won the cup!
A Mini Repeat of 2013
I resented my medication again and went off of it, I felt the mental health system was a sham and I decided that I will heal without psychiatric drugs. This was my feeling because the medical system doesn’t address root cause, it only addressed my symptoms.
I believe that until we look at reality from the fundamentals and not the microscopic details we won’t find answers to why mental illness happens in people’s lives.
But without my medication I got sick again and because I wound up manic more severely than before, and I had to be on more medication then before to become well again. The good news is I didn’t come into any conflict with the law during this phase of my life. This is because I still had the presence of mind to avoid making costly decisions.
I spent 2 weeks in hospital and it was my 7th hospitalization in almost 3 years.
The Dark Night Of The Soul
After the mania went away the dark knight of the soul began for me.
From Sep to Dec 2015 I went through the most intense depression I have ever been, and I can only imagine will ever go through.
This depression started when I got a job as a dishwasher and I didn’t even have the mental strength to work for 1 full day. I quit the job on the spot because it felt meaningless; there was no way I was going to be a minimum wage worker for the rest of my life. I had no willingness to work for that little pay and bust my ass that much. I then lost complete hope in my work related goals because I defined work as metaphorically running on a treadmill.
No thoughts of a rewarding mission came up in my life; I was a walking ghost with no purpose or energy. Even worse was the fact that I had no hope that things would get better.
I couldn’t even spend 5 minutes with myself without realizing that life was shit. It didn’t matter where I went or what I did, nothing could make me feel any better about life.
I didn’t know what to do, or even what the point of being alive was. I couldn’t see my weak lazy self run on the vocational treadmill until 65, just so I could die in a retirement home as a regretful man. There had to be purpose to life. But I didn’t see it.
Everything I did that fall was whatever it took to take my mind of the pain of depression.
But whatever I did was in vain, I was going to feel this depression no matter what.
I couldn’t even play hockey or work out and enjoy it, I remember one time I was on the bench and just waiting for the game to be over because I couldn’t play while I was that depressed.
Eventually I got out of this depression; I endured another one of God’s tests!
2016 Following My Highest Joy!
To start 2016 I said; I will follow my highest joy without fail!
So I started a lot of contemplative walking and got back into spirituality more. I wanted to find purpose again!
I began to read more, and my enjoyment for playing hockey came back!
The sun was rising on a new age for me.
But the work was only beginning.
I remained out of hospital for more than a year since 2015, and my doctor saw that I was making tremendous progress in my mental health recovery. I took a public speaking group to advance my goal of becoming a motivational speaker, and I joined A Course in Miracles in the summer.
The course in miracles is a great spiritual course; and it gives me a place to be heard and learn other people’s insights. It does a great job of enhancing my faith in life!
I then met my personal development coach and joined a group called “Creative Heart”, this is a group where 7 entrepreneurs like myself share feedback and help ourselves do better at each-others work.
Near the end of 2016 I made some serious breakthroughs, In December I got a job shoveling snow. 2016 Angus wasn’t too proud to work like 2015 Angus was, and I decided to show some willingness to get my hands dirty and work hard.
2017 (My Breakthrough Year)
My attraction to this girl I had a longing for still (at this point in time) hadn’t gone away; I still wanted and hoped for her to be in my life.
But in March 2017 I said “I’ve had enough of this” and “I will find a way to let go once and for all.”
I couldn’t just think to myself “get over it” or “let go” and hope for results because this was a deep emotional attraction I had towards the idealized version of a person who I didn’t even know that much about. It wasn’t enough to hear that I didn’t know her, or that I was attracted to a made up version of her.
I needed to realize what the real desire was.
As I looked at life from the vantage point of my higher self, I had an “aha” moment!
It was the biggest realization of my life!
“I simply wanted to be heard by the person who had shut me down the most.”
“The ego has a desire to be heard, and when this desire is unfulfilled it causes mental and emotional pain.”
I also noticed that underneath that desire to be heard by this person there was a desire to make immense positive contributions in her life.
When I knew what my desires were let go automatically.
“The heart has a desire to serve other people.”
So this girl who shut me down in life was actually a major gift because she helped me recognize my inner desire is actually to serve other people. She also helped me understand the value of “letting go” and gave me a tremendous opportunity to put “letting go” into practice.
She was the inspiration and the catalyst for my spiritual growth as a human being.
After letting go, I wasn’t turning towards this hopeful desire of being friends one day, I’m now turning towards the despair and emptiness that comes from facing reality. I feel the reality that we will never know each other, never talk to each other, and I live peacefully knowing that this is just a feeling that will eventually pass.
As I make this transition in letting go, I discover that letting go and surrendering to whatever arises is one of the fundamentals to enlightened spirituality.
I CAN TRANSCEND WHATEVER HAPPENS!
As I begin “Facilitating Your Breakthrough” I realize that I have facilitated plenty of my own breakthroughs as well.
What will your next breakthrough be?