Have you ever caught yourself holding your breath during the day?
Take a moment right now, and notice your breathing, your posture, the tension in your shoulders.
What do you smell?
What is sitting in front of you?
Are there sounds in the room?
How many devices do you have sending notifications while you’re reading this post? (Yes, I saw you just sneak a peek at your phone.)
In this go-go stressed out world, we all need resources that will help us zero back in on this moment. After all, that’s all we have. A series of moments strung together to make a day, month, year, life.
In the immortal words of Ferris Bueller, “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.”
Here are some apps that will support your efforts to stop and look around once in a while.
5 Apps That Support Mindfulness
1. Breathe for Apple Watch
It’s not good to hold your breath, according to experts. It’s a sign of stress, and can lead to problems. If you have an Apple Watch, you now have a breathing buddy. I scoffed at this one when I first saw it, but after using it steadily for a week, I noticed a difference in my general state. Here’s a great article that goes in-depth on how Breathe works. The animated graphic, along with the haptic feedback, give you an oasis of calm whenever they appear. You can set the frequency and length as well. The beautiful simplicity of this one makes it a winner.
I’ll admit to being a meditation newbie, and the Calm app was a good entry point for me. It comes with some free mediation sessions, and then offers additional paid sessions. They have a beautiful desktop app in addition to the mobile and watch apps, so you can get centered no matter where you are. If you’re using an iPhone with the Apple Health app, your Calm meditation sessions will integrate and count toward your “mindful minutes” each day.
3. Mindful Mynah
It doesn’t get much simpler than the Mindful Mynah app, which plays a brief sound on a schedule you set. The idea is that hearing the sound (which you choose) will remind you to refocus on the task at hand, or get aware of your present moment. You can use it for any purpose, including remembering to take a brief break and stretch! It’s only 99 cents in the app store; there’s a desktop and a mobile app available.
The Headspace app is more like a personal trainer for meditation. The application will take you through meditation sessions you choose based on your mood or lifestyle. They have a user community on the website, so you can connect with other Headspace fans and get support. There is a free 10 day trial, with paid plans thereafter, starting at $6.40 per month.
If playfulness is your thing, Buddhify will appeal to you. Its colorful wheel-style selector will help you choose the appropriate guided meditation for where you are and what you’re doing. Can’t sleep? In pain? There’s a session for you in the Buddhify app. The app provides stats and charts to track your progress, and has both guided and solo timed options, in case you want to just go it alone. It’s $4.99 in the app store (not free, but won’t break the bank either).
BONUS: I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention a member of our GeniusShared family, Bija Bennett, who has amazing wellness resources on her website, including this great video on breathing awareness.
Have you tried any of these apps yet? Did I miss any good ones you’d like to share?