How I Used Psychedelics for Personal Development

What originally started as an interest in researching and studying the life of Steve Jobs led me down a path to one of the most powerful life-changing experiences I’ve ever had: exploring psychedelics.

There’s no way that I could ever communicate through words exactly what the experience was like, but I can provide some insightful snapshots to explain how psychedelics changed my life and taught me so much.

Now, don’t get me wrong: psychedelics weren’t something that I approached haphazardly or used just for their effect. That’s why for each “adventure” I had a well experienced guide to assist in my exploration and expand my mind. Not any person though, but someone who was well versed and had such a high IQ they could be a part of MENSA - the top 2% of the smartest people in the world.

I like people who don’t see life in an average way; that’s why I didn’t want to, either.

To help you gauge what psychedelics can be like, here’s some overview so you can get an idea of what is experienced:

Here's an article about what it's like.

For my “adventure(s),” I stuck with two psychedelics: acid and shrooms. Instead of compartmentalizing each encounter, though, I’m going to focus on the overall experience.

If I’m going to be completely honest, it’s like there are these life and death moments where you explore areas of your life that you may have been semi-aware of or ignored that you begin to face. Gradually, you are peeling away the layers of who you are.

Why am I so lazy?
Why am I so serious?
Why do I have so much anxiety?
Why do I worry so much?
Why am I here on earth?
What’s the point of living?

You really begin to dig deep where you haven’t been able to go before. Reaching into the core and heart of the matter with clarity instead of getting hung up on details like would typically happen during a usual day-to-day.

You begin to see and experience life differently:

  • Looking into a light bulb and seeing the waves of electricity moving back and forth.
  • Watching the ice cubes inside a drinking glass melt before your eyes like you’ve never seen.
  • Heightened senses and emotions that make for an insanely strong impact.
  • Biting into an orange and literally feeling it explode and burst in your mouth, sensing every drop.
  • Textures becoming so present that you could pet a cat for 20 minutes without even playing with it (I don’t even like cats!)
  • Realizing that life is beyond just yourself and connecting with nature and trees in a way that can’t be described. Sensing that they are alive through their unique movements.

In the process, there are so many thoughts, ideas, and answers coming to you that it’s hard to keep track of them all. You end up with epiphanies that are life-changing, however, you must take action on them. As you will be able to see, there can be common themes. For me, one was that I tended to be so empathetic to others that I often inconvenienced myself and put a lot of weight on what others would say. It’s something I’m still working with and have come a long way on.

Learn what I discovered just three years ago, in 2011:

For the past three years, I’ve been debating whether or not to share this. I often found myself wondering:

  • What will people think?
  • Will I get fired?
  • What if I lose friends?
  • Will people look at me the same again?

These questions sprung to mind because many people view me as their “go-to person” for advice, business insight, and many other full-of-trust scenarios.

But the more I thought about this, the more I realized two things:

  • These experiences were at least three years ago and I’m more successful now at what I do than I ever was. In fact, I’m much better.
  • The experiences I’ve had are what allow me to have a more unconventional view and go beyond the norm; they allow me to stand out and help others in a way most people cannot.

If you take a look at some of the greatest minds in history, they’ve had similarly wild experiences. Here’s a few of those gems:

The more I thought about it, I’ve decided it’s the narrow-mindedness that keeps people from really experiencing life and staying in a bubble.

Afraid of getting fired, which leads to no money.

Which leads to not getting another job.

To losing all lack of respect.

To others saying that you shouldn’t have shared all of that information about yourself.

Wishing that you never would have had the experience because your life will never be the same.

But you can’t live in fear. If you notice with my generation and the younger ones, I would say our tagline is, “we don’t give a fuck!” You either accept us or you don’t. If you don’t, we’ll move on.

I think there’s a culturally shared fear from previous generations that in some ways has been passed on, but for the most part forgotten.

No one shared their weight or age, were afraid to state they had an illness, or if they were getting divorced. Everyone was hush-hush about personal topics, yet people secretly had many of the same experiences. Constantly saying things like, “please don’t tell anyone! If my boss finds out…”

However, sharing allows you to gain support and awareness where you otherwise wouldn’t have it. And it allows you to gain more insight that you wouldn’t traditionally have.

Today, everyone is sharing: proudly talking about their weight and diets, doing an ice bucket challenge or walk to raise awareness and money for illnesses, attending groups for divorce or gaining support over social media. It’s easier to share and fall into an accepting group of people rather live in a life of worry and secrecy. If you can’t share who you are and what you’ve done, how can you be happy? Life is about sharing experiences.  

I’m not encouraging you to go out and do drugs, simply explore your boundaries, whatever those may be. Maybe it’s taking a plane flight if you’re afraid of flying or going skydiving if you’re afraid of heights. Look deeply within yourself and continue to grow. That’s what being human is about - trying new experiences, exploring, and sharing!


"Psychedelic experience is only a glimpse of genuine mystical insight, but a glimpse which can be matured and deepened by the various ways of meditation in which drugs are no longer necessary or useful. If you get the message, hang up the phone. For psychedelic drugs are simply instruments, like microscopes, telescopes, and telephones. The biologist does not sit with eye permanently glued to the microscope, he goes away and works on what he has seen..." - Alan Watts