Danny Dyer believes there is a "higher power" guiding him through life after once being in such a "dark place" he was "slowly committing suicide".
The "EastEnders" actor has become "quite spiritual" as he has got older and has started meditating daily, after previously being "a bit of a lunatic" in which he hated himself so much he couldn't bear to look in the mirror for more than five seconds.
He said: "I've become quite spiritual. I believe there's a higher power looking after me. Maybe there's something that has been dragging me through life.
"I've had a mad couple of years, a lot of soul-searching. Pre that, I was a bit of a lunatic. Self-sabotage, all that.
"I was in such a dark place, I was slowly committing suicide. I had no hope, I hated myself, couldn't look in the mirror for more than five seconds.
"It just repulsed me, what was looking back. I was just pressing the f**k-it button all the time. It got to a point where I thought I was going to die - I don't think I'm going to wake up."
Danny says he has "never really been the same" since he appeared on stage in his mentor Harold Pinter's play "Celebration" in 2001 at New York's Lincoln Center, before which he stayed up all night and smoked crack.
He said: "I was abusing myself so much, my brain wasn't ready and I didn't have a clue what to say.
"The blood rushed from my feet to my head and I was petrified. I felt so vulnerable.
"Never really been the same since. It's like a boxer who wins 27 fights and no-one gets near him and then they get knocked out and they're never the same again."
Danny also admits he became a "parody of [himself]" 10 years ago.
He added to the i newspaper: "I think about 10 years ago, I was a bit of a laughing stock, and I created a lot of that myself. I became a parody of myself. Whatever that means."
The "Football Factory" star picked up the Serial Drama Performance prize at the National TV Awards last month for his role as EastEnders" Mick Carter, and admitted afterwards he felt Harold - who passed away in 2008 aged 78 - had given him "a little gift" from beyond the grave.
He said: "I feel very connected to Harold Pinter, who was very important to me, and I realise that now. I took him for granted slightly.
"He's been gone for 10 years and I'm doing a play at the moment, doing "The Dumb Waiter", and I feel really connected to him at the moment. Maybe this is a little gift from him, I don't know."