Whether you have an established meditation practice or are looking to start, try these apps for some guidance.
As the world gets busier and busier and our society focuses on accomplishing more and more, time for stillness and stepping away from the to-do list is needed more than ever. I start my day with 10-15 minutes of meditation or breathing and, with practice, I have been able to carry my morning intention into my day. There are times at work when I am in "go" mode and I don't take a moment to pause until lunch or even as I walk out to my car to head home, but most often I can find a short moment to come back to my breath or my intention throughout the day. My meditation practice helps to tame my monkey mind, allows for "me time" as I start the day, and provides perspective during challenging, stressful times.
I personally like a guided meditation and have used these three apps the most:
Headspace - provides 10 days of a great foundation for free, then there is a subscription fee (monthly or annual). Once you get through the three levels of basics, you unlock loads of packs on different topics ranging from anxiety to sleep to focus and much more. I love Andy's voice, the fun videos that explain concepts, and Andy's simple analogies.
Meditation Studio - this app has a one time fee to purchase the app giving you access to numerous teachers and guided meditations. I like the variety of this app in terms of teachers, style of meditation, and length of meditation. There is also a Meditation Studio Podcast that is a great companion providing insightful conversations on meditation, sleep, and much more.
Relax Stress & Anxiety Relief - this is a simple breathing app that I use some mornings when I don't want to have a guided meditation; I also use it as a break during the day when I just need to unwind or at night if I wake up with a racing mind (which is happening less as I meditate more regularly). I have the lite version and stay with the beginner level choosing the length of breath that feels relaxing and not straining.
I also listen to Dan Harris's podcast 10% Happier, and while I have not used the 10% Happier app for meditating, I know this app has some great videos, meditations and other resources. The app is free to start, but there is an upgrade option for an annual fee.
Any of these apps provide a great starting point and I would recommend trying them all to see which one resonates with you most. Give each one a week to 10 days and then go with the one really clicks for you. Meditation is a journey and lifelong practice so it does take time, consistency, and patience to feel like what you are doing is making an impact, but all of these apps and podcasts will help guide you and provide answers to many common questions and concerns.
Comment with any questions or feedback, and if you are interested in subscribing to my blog click here. To read any of my other posts click here, this post on the importance of white space may remind you of the importance of scheduling time for noting.