People today don’t have it that easy. Living the most stressed-out times in history might have something to do with the fact that we are constantly amped by a myriad of stimuli and incessant distractions all day long. Apparently the drive that fuels us today, along with an inherent greater sense of purpose (in life and in the workplace) and unwaveringly-high expectations, have taken its toll on us by adding a splash (a wave, actually) of stress.
This can be counteracted by doing exercise (to get those endorphins going), cutting back on work hours, eating and living healthy and being sociable (in real life, not online). Experts recommend combatting stress through exercise, reducing work, maintaining a healthy diet and lifestyle and talking to others. You can add massages, yoga and meditation to the list.
These considered to be eastern practices have soared in the west, offering benefits such as stress reduction, improved concentration and slows down aging while benefiting your immune system and cardiovascular health. Meditation in particular has increased in popularity in recent years as a way to connect with oneself and flourish.
Meditation is usually considered to be a computer-free, off-line option to disconnect from our incessant digital overloads so the fact that there are apps to help us with this practice is rather ironic. And incredibly practical.
So let’s take a step back, breath in deeply and download one (or all) of these meditation apps:
A great alternative for those that are weary of new-age recordings. This app offers meditations to help you deal with anxiety, depression or to simply sleep better every night. What we love most? It does it all in a lovely British accent.
Harvard Business Review recommended this app as a “new tool for brain workouts”. Designed by neuroscientists, the app offers games that will improve your attention span, memory and overall brain functions. Perfect way to keep your brain sharp and alert.
This is decidedly a very zen app, offering guided meditations, sleep meditations, breathing exercises and relaxing nature sights and sounds to un-stress you. They even offer bedtime stories for adults, designed to help you unwind and chill out at the end of your day and have a great night’s sleep.
Visually simple with a sleek design, this app helps you track your meditations, whether they be on your own or guided. You can keep a record of the dates of your meditations, their length and set reminders for future sessions that will pop up on your phone.
This sweet app wants you to do exactly what the name says: Stop (what you’re doing and check in with your thoughts and feelings), Breathe (with some mindful breathing exercises) and Think (to broaden your horizons and perspective). It offers a special version for kids from 5 to 10.
This app was specially designed for those in their 20s but can apply to anyone. It offers a plurality of guided meditations (over 250) with different teachers and in different styles from which you can choose the one the best suits you. They also offer courses, meditation logs and the option to schedule your sessions.
An extremely easy and user-friendly app that was originally designed for kids and young adults starting from 7 years of age, but that quickly expanded to include grown ups. It’s this Australian’s app goal to make mindfulness and meditation accessible to all. It’s also free.