Updated on August 10, 2017
Aspire to Inspire 199: Mike Bayer
“Recovery is a loose garment and everyone has their own fit.”
Regardless of how you quantify it, the one thing that everyone in this world is looking for is happiness. It comes in countless forms and can be achieved in endless ways, but what happens when we get there? Holding on to happiness and finding a way to feel complete in an ever-changing world with new obstacles every day is an even bigger challenge than the first.
For Mike Bayer, Founder and CEO of CAST Centers (wellness, mental health, and addiction treatment center co-owned by Demi Lovato), the choice to devote his life to helping others find and harness their happiness has been a life-changing experience.
From a very young age, Mike had the idea of helping people find their way in the world through creativity. To him, life is much more than filling the role that society lays out for us. It is about self-expression and exploration.
“For me it’s all about freeing people to be the best version of themselves. Sometimes it’s talking through it, sometimes it’s walking through it, and a lot of it is helping them identify for themselves what exactly they want to grow in their life. Some people may want to have a more fulfilling career while other people may want to find more happiness.”
Throughout his own life, Bayer had music to rely on as he discovered who he was as a person. More specifically, the rave scene was a safe haven for him to be himself without the worry of facing judgment or conflict. The rave scene was “freeing,” as Mike puts it. For an underage teen who was just starting to figure out his sexuality, there were few places to feel accepted. The friendly nature of ravers of the time offered the safe environment that many sought after.