By Anna at The Beetle Shack
Here they are folks, as tried and tested (in the most part) by me. So keen to hear your thoughts on apps / practises you've tried for stopping, sitting, breathing and having a little bit of 'you' time.
The cleverness of Head Space is that it's full of just 10 min sessions that you do around the same time everyday. So you get to develop a great little routine for stopping and breathing. The cute illustrations and lovely voiceover man a clear and easy to follow. It makes mediation do-able. Head Space's spill is that they love science so all the techniques are scientifically based to help train your mind.
Yoga Studio is essentially a Yoga app (funnily enough) but it does include multiple mediation classes that run for varying times so that you can choose a 10min class to get you off to sleep at night or a 30min class to cool down after a particularly crappy day. Of course as well as the mediation, simply going through the actions of a gentle stretch class or a more intensive cardio & strength session also calms the mind, regulates your breathing and makes you feel like you've accomplished something for the day. Our top pick of all the yoga apps out there. Plus you only buy it once and there's no monthly fee.
Mind the Bump (specifically for expecting parents or new parents)
Smiling Mind and beyondblue teamed up to create Mind the Bump. A Mediation tool to help singles and couples support their mental and emotional wellbeing in prep for having a baby and becoming a new parent. The app is simple to use with easy, short sessions that will take new parents from the first Trimester of pregnancy through to Postnatal 10 - 24 months. It encourages practising mindful parenting by bringing the dimmest of mindful listening, non-judgement (of self), emotional awareness, self-regulartion and compassion into your journey of being a parent.
Developed by a group of mental health professionals who work with adolescents, this app greets users with a simple, cheerful smiling interface. Smiling Mind’s goal is to spread the practice of mindfulness meditation among young people to fight depression, anxiety, and alleviate symptoms of physical and mental stress. The app’s creators also hope to start young people in meditation so they can develop a lifelong practice.
And just to keep things interesting, how about a good ole colouring in book. But it's on your phone. Brilliant. Colourfy is a free colouring book designed for adults (cute chubby fingers will not cope with the intricate pictures) with a really nice range of mandalas, nature scenes and geometric illustrations. And they sneakily allow you to buy up for more colour palettes. So sneaky. And tempting. It is a super relaxing activity and a nice way to unwind or occupy your mind if you need a quick chill but don't feel like "learning" or making your brain strain. Have a little play and let me know what you think! I'm a bit addicted to this one.