In 2004, comedian Kyle Cease should have felt like he was on top of the world.
After all, he had a nonstop schedule of high-paying college gigs. His Comedy Central specials turned into best-selling DVDs. His string of notable film roles included “10 Things I Hate About You” and “Not Another Teen Movie.”
Instead, Cease was miserable.
After jetting across the country for 68 straight shows, Cease caught pneumonia and nearly died. He also was at least 50 pounds overweight. He was tired of having a string of meaningless flings since near-constant travel prevented lasting relationships.
In desperation, he decided to check out what famed personal transformation guru Tony Robbins had to say about life. Cease connected so thoroughly with Robbins’ teachings that he wound up opening for him at his arena appearances.
And five years ago, after winning Comedy Central’s prestigious Stand-Up Showdown for creating its most popular stand-up special of the year, Cease switched his career altogether. He now offers his own personal transformation teachings full time.
This weekend, Cease will bring his two-day “Evolving Out Loud” seminar to the Alex Theatre in Glendale, Calif. following a sold-out weekend last August. What sets him apart in the crowded field of growth gurus? His ability to entertain as well as enlighten by incorporating comedy in his talks.
“I really believe all of our stress, every part of us is in our head, and that we think we’re not complete unless we get something,” says Cease, 38, a Seattle native who has been performing comedy since he was 12. “When you were 2 or 3, you didn’t worry about Facebook or what job you get. One of the biggest illusions we live with is, ‘When something happens, I’ll be happy.’ But after achieving many of the things I wanted In my life, I can tell you that’s not true. It’s ‘When I’m happy, things will happen.’ Things will show up because you don’t care anymore what the results are.”
“Evolving Out Loud” events address several major topics each weekend, often with other personal evolution speakers taking the stage between talks by Cease. But perhaps the most memorable moments come when Cease brings audience volunteers to the stage to discuss their struggles. He helps them break through the thought patterns and excuses that have limited their success.
Many attendees have such a positive experience they return and share their progress with the next crowd. According to Cease, it’s the use of comedy and the ensuing laughter that open audiences up to the deeper lessons.
“Your thoughts are based in your past, but if you come to realize you exist in this moment and the past doesn’t actually affect you, all that goes away,” says Cease. “Comedy is a great way to entertain people and keep them in the moment. When you laugh you are always in the present and in the moment. And it makes it fun to learn.”
To hear the rest of the interview with Cease, visit Radio Titans’ “Kozversations.” To hear hundreds of other interviews with famed comics, actors, writers, filmmakers and musicians, visit www.radiotitans.com.
Kyle Cease presents “Evolving Out Loud” at 10 a.m. April 2 and 3 at the Alex Theatre, 216 N. Brand Blvd., Glendale, Calif. He’ll also bring “EOL” to New York City Feb. 14-17. Tickets are $199-$499.