Who Are We?
Mandala is dedicated to empowering women to embrace complexity one step at a time. We are doing this by shifting the mental health stigma and giving women the opportunity to love themselves for who they are. Founded by McKenna Dempsey, an expert in living with anxiety, we are creating a solution that meets women where they are in their journey and provides them resources, techniques and education about their mental health.
Why Are We Doing This?
We want to create a world that allows women the space to understand themselves and also be badasses. The two are not mutually exclusive and we want to make that clear.
“I live with anxiety and depressive episodes, and when I was 19, I asked my dad, ‘why am I crazy?’ and he responded with, ‘you’re not crazy, you’re just complex.’ This completely shifted the way I thought about my brain and how it interacts with the world around me, teaching me that there’s actually nothing wrong with me, I am just unique and have needs that I’m still learning to identify.
I want to share this with women like me. The women whose brains go haywire and spend hours running on the hamster wheel. The women who feel scared that they won’t find their purpose or that their brains are too much to handle. Every day, I battle thoughts that make my mind feel like it’s playing tricks on me, like I’m crazy, and I know that I’m not the only one who needs something that helps them learn that I’m actually not crazy, I’m just complex.”
We wanted to create a solution that meets these needs.
What Are We Doing?
Mandala Mission changes the way we think about our mental health. Our vision is massive, including events, community groups, after school programs and university awareness, but we’re launching our organization with our mobile app. We are making mental health accessible and affordable, for those who are nervous to seek help, for those who don’t have the means to get it and for those who just need a little extra between therapy sessions.
We’re developing a mental health journey, from education to tactics to routine. We put education front and center because there is such a misconception about how our brains are wired. We are creating an experience that allows women to not only receive step by step tools to get them through each day, but to also understand what they are doing and why they are doing it. Our app features three main elements: intention setting, programs and routines.
You can get an in-depth overview below.
Where Are We? What’s Next?
We are about to release the first version of our beta app. Once we do this, we will be seeking testers to deep dive into this experience and give us their thoughts and feedback. With these thoughts and feedback, we will then alter our feature sets as needed, bring in a few team members and build our full app to launch later this year.
It is difficult to find the resources needed to battle in the war that can take place in your brain. We’re creating a solution that offers a different method and meets women where they are in their journey.
In order to create this experience, we need funding, so we came up with a way to spread our message and fund our dream. The Mandala Project is our step to get there.
Intention setting: set goals, create motivation allows women to set goals, create motivation in their own words that they can then check in with throughout their day or week or month. This is the starting point, where we lock down what’s important to us.
Our programs are the meat of our entire experience. This is where women can go through courses that help them understand the nitty gritty bits of their brains and how to manage thoughts, understand their wiring and get the background of the techniques they’re learning, so they not only learn what to do, but they find out why they’re doing it. We have partnered with mental health professionals to create educational programs, accompanied by a habit-changing formula, to take women from “I don’t know where to start” to “I know what I’m doing and why I’m doing it.”
Our mobile experience wouldn’t be complete without routines. Here, women can choose from a collection (and eventually create their own) of routines that schedule their mental health maintenance. Whether they want to add a nightly ritual or a midday check in, they have the tools at their fingertips to make it easier to conquer the challenges that come up. On top of this, they have access to all resources and tools for any panic-moment or need for a quick calming exercise.