“Part of the design of LinkedIn was to understand where the modern world was going. Everyone would have a public identity, and this changes various aspects of your life.”
Now, in the 2020s, we’re engaged in an intense battle — reclaiming our sense of agency in a culture that is hijacking our minds. We’re hungry to develop an inner identity — a vision for the people we know, deep in our hearts, we can become.
The time is ripe now for an “inner LinkedIn” — an innerNet — a space to nourish and celebrate a new kind of heroism — mastery of the world inside.
“The future belongs to those who see possibilities before they become obvious.”
innerNet 1.0 is for those who are hungry for a more evolved social architecture — at the intersection of AI, personal growth and planetary healing.
“People like the idea of innovation in the abstract, but when you present them with any specific innovation, they tend to reject it because it doesn’t fit with what they already know.” Jessica Livingston
“Most of the big breakthrough technologies seem crazy at first… It has to be a radical product. It has to be something where, when people look at it, at first they say, “I don’t get it. I don’t understand it. I think it’s too weird; I think it’s too unusual.” Marc Andreessen
“If people don’t think your idea is crazy, then that’s a clue that you’re not operating in the moonshot arena.” Naveen Jain
Wellgorithms are a new category of “social self help.”
In clinical language, Wellgorithms are personalized, step-by-step practices that help you evolve into your best possible self, in community.
In mythopoetic language, Wellgorithms are “soul codes,” as James Hillman called them; “hero’s journeys,” as Joseph Campbell called them.
In Jungian language, Wellgorithms are mini-processes of individuation … the creative alchemy of giving birth to a new self, through practice in community.
Wellgorithms are emotional simulators, step-by-step ways of “presencing the future,” as Otto Scharmer puts it. With Wellgorithms, you can micro-presence specific emotional futures, in a community of futures.
Current social architectures confine us to a single time-frame, in single boxes, in a single scroll. Wellgorithms, by contrast, are a sequence of personalized time-frames. Now you can put together any number of frames to form a journey.
In your first frame, if you’re in a conflict, you might raise your voice. In your second, take a deep breath. In your third, ask a question. In your fourth, explore a new possibility. In your fifth, enter the energetic pattern of your best future self.
There are a near-infinite number of combinations and sequences, making this an astonishing new game of “innerChess“. Someone pushes anger in your direction — what’s your next move? Someone is egotistical, envious, or destructive — what are your next inner moves? Someone forgives you — what’s your next move?
Wellgorithms give you the power to create a matrix of your inner moves. To see dozens of moves ahead. And then, to identify winning moves forward — in your own beautiful and unique way.
Every new medium gives birth to a new talent. Moving pictures created a new stage on which countless talents could come out and play.
Wellgorithms are likewise a new medium, a new art form. They are an inner camera to capture your moving thoughts and emotions, a lens to make a message of the mess, through an infinite number of possible viewpoints.
You might not be a great poet or philosopher or musician or film maker. But you might have a gift for moving souls — for creating Wellgorithms that guide others through the darkness and nourish their better angels.
With innerNet 1.0, you get your own portal, with a personalized Wellgorithms feed. With InnerNet 2.0, you’ll have access to some of the more advanced portals including innerWeather, innerForecast, innerReality, innerSim, and more.
When we speak of a “a new horizon for a new kind of hero,” people think we’re building a Facebook for nice people, such as MeWe, or a Twitter for conservatives, such as Parler. But these are content platforms. The innerNet is a practice platform.
You might be good at keeping the peace. Thomas is resilient, and rebounds quickly from setbacks. Chelsea can find humor in any situation. Now, with Wellgorithms, we can share and cross-pollinate our BEPs — Best Emotional Practices.
There are thousands of startups working in the mental health space, with similar-sounding elevator pitches. They commonly claim “less stress, more success”; “a better you, a better world”; “evidence-based personal growth and wellbeing”; “mindfulness for a happier, healthier you,” etc.
We honor the great people working in this space. But humanity is at a bifurcation point — we can no longer decouple mental health from social media. We need a new generation of Gandhis and Kings, and Kellers and Parks, to help us realize one of humanity’s core missions — Big Tech Meets Big Heart.
When people ask us what we’d do with $300 million, we share a note we posted on our fridge years ago —
Companies now recognize the importance of integrating work with wellbeing, and becoming Deliberately Developmental Organizations, as Robert Kegan and Lisa Lahey call them. These DDOs need a DDSN — a Deliberately Developmental Social Network in which developmental practices are built into the everyday fabric of work life.
Ray Dalio’s software innovations are extraordinary first leaps. But they don’t yet have the step-by-step practices, the Wellgorithms.
Wellgorithms build on evidence-based research into “transformative emotional sequences,” “emotional chunking,” and “emotional scripts.” We also build on:
• Michael Bratman, shared intentional activities
• Brandon Burchard and Anders Ericsson, deliberate practice
• B.J. Fogg, tiny habits; James Clear, atomic habits
• Alvaro Pascual-Leone, sequential learning
• James W. Pennebaker, journaling and healing
• Ellie Drago Severson, transformational learning
• Daniel Gilbert and Timothy Wilson, affective forecasting
• John Bargh, unconscious influences
• Brad Bowins, addiction, mental health and continuums
• Dan Siegel, Mindsight
• Michael Merzenich, neuroplasticity
• Lisa Feldman Barrett, emotions
• Tiffany Watt Smith, language
• Jeannette Littlemore, embodied metaphor
And hundreds of others.
For innerNet 2.0, we’re developing a new “layer of intelligence” on top of Zoom or Microsoft Teams, in which we can do Wellgorithms with live video. You’ll be able to sit in HOT SEATS and move, step by step, through any emotional or psychological challenge you might have — in a deliberate and developmental way.
Developing Wellgorithms for rehab has been one of our driving motivators, as we’ve lost friends and family to drug and alcohol overdoses.
We worked with over 30 recovering addicts to create over 500 Wellgorithms for managing temptations, triggers, relapses, and living beautifully sober in a 24/7 world.
Rumi said, “Create a new language, create a new world.”
Wittgenstein said, “To imagine a new language is to imagine a new form of life.”
Now there’s a growing, evidence-based field, Poetry Therapy, that highlights the benefits of journaling and “creative languaging.” Many recent studies explore how metaphor shapes consciousness and naming your emotions gives you a new power.
Each of the Wellgorithms has a unique name. The names broaden our field of awareness, expanding what is imaginable and expressible. As we gain mastery, through repetition, the name becomes embodied and serves as shorthand for the journey.
You might be hitting some brick walls and suddenly limits la Crosse comes to mind. Within an instant, your unconscious walks you through the steps. You enter the energetic pattern of seeing limits as a game that you can master.
“Name it to tame it,” says Dan Siegel. “People are paralyzed by unnameable emotions.” We’re at the dawn of an astonishing new era — the naming of thousands, maybe millions, of new emotional spaces.
That’s a question we sometimes got in 2021, but by the mid to late 2020’s, people were mindboggled that they hadn’t discovered the innerNet earlier.
In 1904, the Wright brothers got into a plane and buzzed around the skies. As historian David McCullough explains, “With few exceptions there seemed to be no public interest at all, no local excitement or curiosity or sense of wonder over the miraculous thing happening right in Dayton’s own backyard.”
“When the city editor of the Daily News, Dan Kumler, was asked later why for so long nothing was reported of the momentous accomplishments taking place so nearby, he said, after a moment’s reflection, ‘I guest the truth is that we were just plain dumb.'”
The innerNet is a new field of awareness. We humans are entering new territory together — developing a new architecture of consciousness, new patterns of relationship, new ways of exploring the heavens inside.
This is the hardest thing about taking a principled stand: watching so many good, smart people you admire nevertheless cave in to cultural norms. Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s highly-esteemed peers caved in to Hitler and couldn’t understand his objections. It’s a phenomenon that repeats itself in every generation. Martin Luther King, Jr. said that to be a creative soul is to be maladjusted.
Social media is fueling a new kind of Holocaust — an inner Holocaust. So we’re maladjusted to that.
We repeat what we don’t repair.
Right now, we urgently need to repair our pattern of organizing. It impacts everything else — mental health, climate change, inequality. Social media divides us and induces a trance-like helplessness. We feel unable to transform the system — because social media is the pipeline for the system.
It is time now to weave a new social pattern — a new quilt of connectivity that helps us transform our conflicts into a common creative force. Great movements are born at the intersection of outer wrestling with inner wrestling.
“One of the challenges of building new technologies is that we often want them to solve things that have been very socially difficult to solve.” danah boyd
This is our biggest challenge: people want innerNet 3.0 right now — the augmented, bio-quantum-hyper-reality version. It takes a special kind of person to look at 1.0 and see 3.0. To resonate with a reality that exists in embryonic form.
Wellgorithms are future-presencing tools. And we are challenged to future presence our future presencing.
innerNet 1.0 was build by some guy in a garage, without funding. People love to criticize — but without getting into the arena, without dealing with “the heart-ache and the thousand natural shocks that flesh is heir to.”
To paraphrase Booker T. Washington: Judge not the innerNet by where it is now, but by the obstacles it has overcome — and what is emerging now from its depths.
To enter this next phase, we need a platform, a DDSN — an “innerNet” — that is optimized for this mastery.
Otherwise, those with access to powerful AI will not just to hijack our minds; they will completely own our insides — China in its particular way, Facebook and other Western companies in their particular ways.
The “fierce urgency of now,” as MLK put it, calls us to evolve beyond algorithms — to put the power to be the people we want to be into our own hands. The time is ripe for a new kind of collective imaginary — a Beloved Community — powered by Wellgorithms.