For Mallika Chopra, living with intent is as natural as breathing. It’s not hard to see why. The founder and CEO of Intent.com, Chopra just happens to be the daughter of Deepak Chopra, author and world-renowned authority in spiritual healing and mind-body medicine, who taught her how to meditate at the tender age of nine.
Likewise, Mallika Chopra understands that intentions evolve over time, just like businesses. That’s why she’s launching a totally revamped version of Intent.com. Timed to coincide with Chopra Well, a new series of YouTube programming by her father, the videos and the online platform aim to provide users with a seamless way to discover, get inspired by, and support each other’s intents.
“When we first launched it was more like a blog,” she explains, but a simple space on the site offered the online community a place to share dreams and aspirations. “We saw that people loved to share their intents but also support others,” Chopra says. The challenge, she admits, was keeping people engaged in that support network. “It was more like Twitter,” Chopra admits, “Share, then go off into the ether.”
With a new functionality designed to enhance storytelling, Chopra says, users can explain why they are setting a particular goal, how the community can help them achieve it, and even list their inspirations. In other words, the Intent network can go beyond clicking a thumbs-up and actually help the individual along their path by sharing the intent with their own personal network, offer words of encouragement in the comments, or even make donations for a cause if that is what the user requests.
“There’s a focus on taking the intent deeper and updating the stories as they progress,” Chopra says.
That’s where Chopra Well comes in.
Besides being a repository for bits of wisdom on sexuality, spirituality, and general enlightenment delivered by Deepak, Mallika Chopra points out that there will be additional programming that follows individuals (taped prior to the launch) as they state their intent and tap a variety of experts to achieve their personal goals.
This has already had a profound effect on Natalie Spilger, professional U.S. soccer player and founder of Green Laces, one of the program’s first participants. Though no stranger to taking the world stage on the soccer field, Spilger says, “The very experience of exposing myself to the world through the show,” gave her the jitters. “Would I look like an idiot? Would I embarrass myself or even worse, my family or friends or colleagues? Would people send me hate mail? It is really confrontational to have your first ever experience with therapy on film for the whole world to see.” Still she maintains, “The work we were doing helped me directly rise above the fears and just go for it.”
A good attitude when you are doing “orgasmic meditation.” Like most of us, Spilger says her sex-ed teacher focused on mechanics and hydraulics of the act rather than the ability to experience a deep spiritual connection. “For me, observing two consenting individuals connect so deeply and experience such a deep level of presence and peace through intimacy was beautiful. I wanted to cry,” she adds.
Mallika Chopra asserts you can, and should, try this at home. “No matter where you are, you will be able to join in on the journey, share their intents, and grow together.”
For his intent, Deepak Chopra has always had a modest goal. “I’ve dreamed of reaching 100 million joyfully serious people.” Thanks to this new YouTube channel and Intent.com, Deepak Chopra quips, he may actually get there. According to his “cosmic” assessment, “Social media is the new network of our planetary brain. It can change our identity and our civilization to take us beyond ethnocentric boundaries so we can truly be global citizens and create a peaceful, just, sustainable world.”
Rather than fight it, Deepak Chopra says he prefers to embrace it–with a little help from his digital native granddaughters.”It is just the natural evolution of human beings,” he explains. “The technology is neutral. We can be victims or creative with it.”
Deepak Chopra errs on the side of fun. “You can hang out with people globally who are like-minded,” he says. But more importantly, he sees Chopra Well and Intent’s network as agents for social transformation. “What we do have is a huge amount of collective intelligence and creativity with crowdsourcing and cloud computing. Add collective intent and compassion along with that and we can really be an unstoppable force.”