May 29, 2017
Your Thoughts Are Your Reality, as They Say.
After a lucrative career of consulting at McKenzie, working as the marketing director at PepsiCo and spending four and a half years under Mark Zuckerberg at Facebook, Chris Pan found himself at a crossroads. He was ready for his next career challenge but also wanted to do something different with his life. He was craving something meaningful. Then at his thirty-sixth birthday, a friend made Pan an intention bracelet. When she asked what word he wanted to have inscribed on it, he chose “Impact.” “I wanted to do something positive with my life, whatever that might be,” he explains. There was something about the concept of wearing your intention on your wrist that inspired Pan. He wrangled a team of his friends together and started making his own variety of intention bracelets for people at charity events, farmer’s markets, and various Southern California gatherings. He began to sell intention bracelets and necklaces, calling his operation the MyIntent Project.
Check out our interview with Pan below and he gives us more of the scoop on his brainchild:
Is this now your full time job?
It is! We started the company in summer 2014. It was just this little project for a long time. We just did it. Nobody made any money. We just covered our costs. Now, this is my full time thing. We have about 50 people on board and it’s continuing to grow. We have a pretty big vision and I think it’s going to be exciting to see where it goes. We pay people and we just reinvest it back in the project. We fund our people – our artisans and our staff. We also fund a lot of artists. There are over 15-20 artists and storytellers that we are now able to write checks to, to enable them to do what they do and help us get the word out. So we just want to grow the project. We are very mission driven. And the sales of the bracelets provide that freedom for us to do what we want to do.
How are you getting your intention jewelry into the hands of people?
The majority of our orders are from our website. And we have people from over 50+ countries that are ordering stuff, which is incredible. It just speaks to the power of social media and our ability to reach a lot of people. We also do some pop ups here in LA.
What do you hope to accomplish with the project on a global basis?
Right now, we have been piloting an activator program where people are buying kits and they are making this for their local community. So we have a woman in Bali who has a 10-year-old daughter and every month or every week they have a little farmers market at the school and her daughter is actually making these for her local community and taking donations. It’s pocket money for her and some of the proceeds she’s donating to charity. We’re envisioning someday maybe boy scouts will pick this up as an activity that they can do. I want people to have the same experience I had. When you make a bracelet for someone, it’s much more than you’re making a bracelet. You’re having a moment with them. You’re having a deep conversation.
What are the upcoming initiatives of the company?
What we really want to be is education wrapped in fashion and entertainment, education around our emotional health and our spiritual health. And this summer, we are planning a tour around America focused on kids/teenagers. If you think about September through June, it’s all about Math, Science, History, etc. We want to then take the summer and think about creativity, emotion, getting in touch with your feelings. Maybe meditation, setting intentions, setting goals. We want to add that to the curriculum but do that in a fun way. We’re partnering with artists to deliver our message. We have people on board like Kanye West, Justin Bieber, and Jay Z. We’re inviting other artists to come on board and continue spreading our mission.
How do you go about helping people to choose what word they want on their intention jewelry?
I would say, “Hi ___. My name is Chris. What’s your word?” So let’s talk. So what’s going on in your life? If you imagine the ideal life that you want in 2016, what does that look like? Some people know their word right away. With others, it’s a bit of a process.
What word are you currently wearing around your wrist?
I’ve got about 30 intention bracelets at this point. Every month or two. They are like chapters of my life. The word I have now is “Patience,” which I’ve had at different phases of my life. Along with patience is learning to trust, learning to flow, learning to just recognize that everything has its time and place. I hustle like we all hustle, but on the other end of that is balance. Sometimes you hustle, but sometimes you let go and wait for the door to open when it’s supposed to open.