An interactive keynote and pop-up exhibit that allows anyone to share their innermost pain anonymously.
What’s Your Big Lie? (WYBL) is a breakthrough mental health program created by Jordan Axani based on the premise that each of us is living a big lie — and that it’s okay.
We define a 'big lie' as, “something immense that we hide from the world, even though it defines us.” Often it’s the source of the anxiety, worthlessness, hopelessness and pain that we carry around every day.
Extensive research shows that when we feel like we are living a lie, we are far more prone to clinical depression, less able to exercise rational thought and have a much harder time paying attention. Our brains go into a sustained state of panic as we wear masks on social media, at home, at work, and within our relationships.
So, what if we shared these lies with those around us? Well, it might change our lives.
In this 50-90 minute session, we lead audiences of up to 500 people at schools, companies and organizations to their own powerful realizations.
Using phones and an anonymous platform, audiences submit their 'big lies' and other insecurities secretly. Their responses are filtered immediately and projected at the front of the room in massive letters.
In that moment, you can feel a gasp of recognition as everyone realizes that they aren’t alone. Participants then respond back to the submissions verbally – not knowing who in the room it came from – offering messages of affirmation and hope, leading into a discussion about how we can build resilience and better support each other.
This program was developed in collaboration with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) and a team of mental health experts in 2016, and it has been hailed as life-changing countless times. WYBL has been presented to over 150,000 students, teachers, parents, entrepreneurs and professionals across North America. Hundreds of institutions have used WYBL as a catalyst to build stigma-free cultures of openness, empathy and belonging.
By the end of the event, attendees will have:
A deep understanding of the of the pain and fears that their peers are experiencing
A normalization and acceptance of their own struggles
An inspired belief that sharing their struggles does not lead to shame
A toolkit to encourage peer support and awareness of local mental health resources
A newfound realization that none of us are ever alone
The Other Formats
Knowing that keynotes aren't appropriate for all situations, we've designed the program to be delivered in a couple different formats:
A pop-up exhibit that illuminates public spaces with messages:
Set up in student centres or common areas, we collect lies or answers to thought provoking questions about mental health and other issues with our anonymous technology. Using a series of projectors the responses are filtered and displayed in like a large art-like exhibit for all to see.
A workshop designed to meet your organization's specific needs, such as a conversation about mental health in the workplace or sexual assault
Completely customizable, this workshop is about meeting the needs of your organization. We'll work with you to design a program that meets your goals.
A hybrid event, with a pop-up in the afternoon followed by an evening keynote and storytelling event
"What's Your Big Truth?" a softer version of WYBL that's geared towards kids in grades 4-7
The principles and goals are the same as WYBL: to ensure that kids realize that no matter how they feel, they are not alone.
Please contact us to discuss how our program can be customized to your needs. We're here to support you.
This program works effectively with the following audiences and can be customized for each:
A medium or large group of students, parents, employees or leaders looking to address mental health, connection and belonging within their community
A small team or group looking for an intensive team-building experience