Tuesday, January 16, 2018

The 5 Best Meditation Apps Out There



Hello my friends!  I'm so excited to be sharing today's post with you because I know it is going to benefit you so much.  Meditation is one of those things I never ever thought I would do, let alone be a proponent of, and yet...here we are.  I'm writing a post all about meditation, and the five best meditation apps I know of.  

First of all, let me tell you a bit more about why I love meditation and why I recommend it to just about all of my clients.  Well, actually, there's one main reason:  this stuff works.  Meditation works by training people's brains to stay in the present momentYou know, that thing I write about that a lot of people struggle with?  Yeah, anxiety, intrusive thoughts, OCD, guilt/shame, ruminating about the past?  Yep.  Meditation can help with all those things.  How?  So glad you asked.

By partaking in a daily guided meditation practice, you are intentionally spending time learning and re-learning how to stay in the present moment.  Because if we're honest, that's our main battle with anxiety and all those other issues I just mentioned.  Staying mindfully present is very difficult for most people, especially because we are usually being distracted by a million different things (or maybe just one...ahem, cell phone!) at any given moment.  Practicing meditation a little bit every day is like working out a little bit every day (which, of course, I also recommend)...but for your brain.

Some common reasons people hesitate to try meditation are:  they think it's weird, they think it has some religious connotation to it, they feel awkward about laying still and focusing on their breathing.  Eh.  I hear you.  I used to think some of those things, too.  But IMHO, meditation is one of those things you just have to try for yourself.  And once you do, I think you'll find two things:

A.  This stuff really does help (like 95% of people!).

B.  None of those things you thought about it are actually true.

Ok, are you ready to hear the five best meditation apps or what?


1.  Calm - By far and away, the Calm app is my favorite.  If you follow me on Instagram, you'll see me re-graming a lot of their quotes and images because in addition to being an amazing meditation app, they have a bangin' Insta profile.  Calm was recently voted Apple's 2017 app of the year, and for good reason.  It has tons of different guided meditations to choose from in a myriad of categories like calming anxiety, managing stress, increasing focus, improving sleep, and even meditations for new college students or those in recovery from various addictions.  The app also features sleep stories, music and melodies to use as white noise as you fall asleep if you'd rather do that than listen to a guided meditation.  My favorite feature of Calm is the Daily Calm, which is a ten minute guided meditation on a different topic every day.  Ten minutes per day really is enough to help you increase your peace and learn to stay in the present moment.  I can't speak highly enough about this app!

2.  Relax Melodies - Relax Melodies is another awesome go-to app of mine, especially for my kiddos.  While this app is mostly for white noise, there are guided meditations and for some reason, my older son really likes these better than the Calm meditations.  To each his own!  With Relax Melodies, you can follow a Better Sleep Program of meditations over a series of days to help you decompress before bed.  You can see why mama likes this one, right?  There are body scans, tips for quieting your mind, and basic visualizations that focus the mind on something productive, rather than allowing it to wander to those not-so healthy places.  Whenever we travel, we always use Relax Melodies for our boys as white noise.  You can choose from a ton of different sounds (we call ours "the night noises" because they love the campfire mixed with the night sounds) to help create the perfect environment for you to fall asleep to.

3.  Headspace  - Headspace is an Editor's Choice app in the Apple App Store and currently rated # 9 of all the health and fitness apps.  And that's saying something because there are a ton of awesome health and fitness apps out there! Headspace has a 5-star rating and is arguably the most popular meditation app, with over 6 million people users.  Headspace is simple, easy to use and is perfect for people who are new to mindfulness meditation.  Each session is a gentle training on how to stay present and become less anxious.  One of the newest (and coolest) features of Headspace is that on the Apple Watch version of the app, there is a literal panic button you can use when extra-stressful situations arise.  Who doesn't love that?!

4.  Simple Habit - Simple Habit is another great meditation app for beginners because it offers shorter, five minute meditations.  You can (maybe) argue that you don't have ten minutes to meditate, but I don't care who ya are, you can certainly carve out five!  The idea being, once you do, you will begin to see the benefits of mindfulness meditation and then you will be encouraged to keep it up (and maybe try some longer meditations also!).  Once you begin using Simple Habit, you truly will want to make it an actual habit.  This app makes you want to incorporate meditation into your daily routine, which is key to experiencing the benefits of meditating.  This is another app the whole family can use and enjoy.

5.  10% Happier - A newer meditation app, and based off the New York Times best-seller by the same name, it is well on its way to becoming the go-to app for newbie meditators.  This app utilizes a focused program to increase peace of mind, but there are a variety of coaches and themes to the meditations, which ensure you are always learning and growing in your practice.  There is a free 7-session introductory course you can try out, as well as daily videos which teach meditation to people who are literally starting from square one, which I find incredibly helpful, especially for the skeptics out there.  This app also provides you free access to a real human meditation coach, which is something none of the other apps offer and is kind of a cool feature!

Ok, Besties, what do you think?  Are you already practicing meditation or are you thinking about giving it a try?  What are you fave meditation apps?  Let us know in the comments!



   
   
   
   
   
   




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2 comments:

  1. My favorite is 10% happier. In addition to being very good guided meditations, they have meditations and "courses" on almost any topic.

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