What's Your Big Lie?

A breakthrough interactive keynote, workshop and pop-up exhibit that has collected over 150,000 confessions between 160 events in only 18 months...

 
 

Trusted by...

 
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(And many, many others...)

 

Why the program matters 

More lives are taken by suicide than by acts of war, terrorism and homicide combined worldwide. This fact may shock you, but let us shine some light on the all-too-frequently-ignored facts, and suddenly this statement won’t seem so staggering.

In both Canada and the United States, 1 in 5 people suffer from mental illness and 50% of the population will have or have had a mental illness by the time they’re 40. With men making up 50.4% of the canadian population, that means that there are more people in Canada who will have experienced a mental illness than there are women.

Unfortunately, of these millions of sufferers, most will go without treatment. Approximately 3.2 million youths aged 12 to 19 experience mental illness, and only 1 in 5 receive help of any kind. This isn’t without repercussion.

Over the last 20 years suicide rates have been rising dramatically, especially for those aged 15-24 where suicide is responsible for 24% of all deaths -the second leading cause. In America suicide rates have been rising steadily since the ‘90s, and by 2% every year since 2006. In Canada it’s now estimated that 210 people will attempt to take their own lives each day.

Hauntingly, these statistics aren’t typically viewed as accurate. In reality the rates are estimated to be higher, but with the stigma and shame associated with suicide, many cases go unreported.

The mental health crisis that is facing us, and especially the youth, is very real. And it’s getting worse.

 
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The idea

What’s Your Big Lie? is based on the concept that everyone has a “big lie” shielding us from who we truly are. And when we feel like we are living a lie, we are more prone to anxiety and depression, less able to exercise rational thought and have a much harder time to pay attention. In effect, we’re in panic mode.

A big lie is defined as, “something immense that we hide from the world even though it defines us."

Our big lies can make us feel like we’re not enough, like we don’t belong and like we’re alone. But what if we shared our big lies? What would happen next?

Using phones and an anonymous technology platform, participants submit what they are hiding from everyone (their “big lie”). When asked thought-provoking questions, responses are filtered and projected in real-time onto a screen for audiences to absorb. Participants then respond back to different statements verbally – not knowing who in the room it came from – offering messages of affirmation and hope.

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Its history

This program was developed in collaboration with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) in 2016 and has been receiving rave reviews since it’s launch. WYBL has been presented to over 100,000 students, teachers, parents, and professionals.

WYBL helps participants support each other and catalyzes shifts towards inclusivity and acceptance. This interactive keynote and pop-up exhibit is a spark to build a stigma-free culture of openness and vulnerability at school or work. It is ideal for institutions and groups who are looking to strengthen peer support, empathy, and belonging.

Meet Jordan

Jordan Axani helps people understand how they are unique our digital world.

From working on the revitalization plan of an earthquake-ridden city in Chile, to implementing the pedestrian experience of the Pan Am Athlete’s Village in Toronto, and consulting Fortune 500s, Jordan’s work over the past 10 years has focused on helping create teams, products and places where people feel deeply united.

In late 2014, one of his more comical social experiments went accidentally viral to the tune of 4.2 billion media impressions, becoming known as the most viral human interest story in the history of the internet. (Statistically speaking, some of you may recall it: It involved a guy left with an extra plane ticket for a trip around the world in the name of his ex-girlfriend that he was dared to give away). However, the untold story is that under incredible pressure from the media cycle and entertainment industry, he felt like a total imposter – ironically, the antithesis of belonging - and collapsed.

In the viral state, Jordan experienced a heightened version of what research has long proven: That our digital lifestyle makes us feel isolated and inadequate personally and professionally. To counter this trend, he now helps build cultures of belonging at companies and schools – where people are united through acceptance of who they are – using a mix of technology and bold experimentation. For example, in “What’s Your Big Lie?”, a keynote and workshop series, he asks audiences to use their phones to anonymously share what makes them hide who they are, projecting their responses in real-time and demonstrating that no one is ever alone. He further researches these ideas as the the co-host of Impostercast, a podcast about faking it, and through a forthcoming book and TV series.

Previously, Jordan began making headlines by biking across Canada at age 17 for the Stephen Lewis Foundation. He went on to earn degrees from the University of Ottawa and the Royal Military College in conflict management. After working in corporate consulting and urban development, he went on to create several social enterprises. His research and organizations have received support from SSHRC, Ontario’s Ministry of Citizenship, the Cordes Foundation, the Department of National Defense, the Institute Without Boundaries, venture capitalists, and thousands of individual donors. He spoke at TEDxToronto in 2015, where he proudly lives and hosts a fantastic dinner party series to which you’re all invited.

 
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Why Book This Program?

We get it. There are a lot of options out there. Here are three major reasons why you should consider this program.

 
 

It's extremely effective

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It's well priced

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It's flexible

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