â€‹Sometimes life is hectic. Yoga, chamomile tea, a walk, and a good book are all popular ways to unwind. And while we all know that meditating can be also one of the best ways to help soothe us, sometimes it’s challenging to find the time or just downright difficult to focus or relax. If you want to stay in the moment and achieve mental clarity but need some guidance, give these meditation apps a try.
Scarsdale psychologist and therapist Dr. Ilana D. Rosenberg explains the value of meditation “To me the most direct benefit of meditation is that you learn that you don’t have to believe everything that you think,” says Rosenberg, “You learn to be present in your everyday instead of ruminating in your mind about things; you learn to really be where you are.”
Meditation practices can be incorporated into yoga classes or just practiced at home in a quiet space. Being mindful and focusing on the present can sometimes feel harder than it sounds, so if you seek relaxation help, look no further than these marvelous meditation phone apps.
Images courtesy of Calm
With its clean, easy to navigate interface and multitude of free nature sounds to choose from, Calm has some great features. Not only does this app have meditation series, relaxing music and masterclasses specific to your needs (mindfulness at work, a mindful eating series and more), but it also has Sleep Stories, described by Calm as “soothing tales that mix music, sound fx and incredible voice talent to help you drift into dreamland.” Basically, if you’ve ever wanted to fall asleep to the gentle vocals of the iconic Bob Ross, this is the meditation app for you.
Price: $59.99 annually
Free Version Gets You: 5 looped nature sounds; one sleep story (free featured sleep story offered in the evening); day 1 of 7-day meditation course. A 7-day premium trial is offered, billed annually after.
Image courtesy of 10% Happier
You’ve most likely heard of the New York Times bestseller, 10% Happier: How I Tamed the Voice in My Head, Reduced Stress Without Losing My Edge, and Found Self-Help That Actually Works–A True Story by ABC News anchor Dan Harris. Now comes the app, featuring meditations and courses from some of the world’s leading meditation teachers and instructors (and Dan himself). With its range of content, the app allows you to browse courses by length, topic or teacher. If (and when) an inquiry arises on your quest for inner peace, the 10% Happier app has a messaging feature, which allows you to connect with, as the app describes, “actual meditators – not robots – with 10+ years of experience who can answer your questions.”
Price: $8.33month or $99.99 annually
Free Version Gets You: A beginner’s pack of 8 meditation sessions with esteemed meditation instructor, Joseph Goldstein. 7-day unlimited access to all of the app’s resources is offered.
Images courtesy of Headspace
From the adorable and informational graphics to the soothing voice of Headspace co-founder, Andy Puddicombe, this app has the ability to make any newcomer feel welcome to the practice of meditation. The Headspace content library offers an assortment of material, from meditation sessions for students struggling with the concept of leaving home, to athletes experiencing strong emotions during rehab, to even a course on boosting productivity in the workplace. Essentially, you name it, they have it. Headspace is taking steps to become the first FDA approved prescription meditation app.
Price: $12.99month$94.99 annually, $399.99/lifetime
Free Version Gets You: 10-day beginner’s pack of meditation sessions, Everyday Headspace: a different, short meditation session offered every day.