Guest post by April Hanna for The AMAZING Campaign
The world of smartphone apps is vast and never ending, and with so many options out there, it can feel daunting to jump in headfirst. Apps can help improve productivity, organization, and even make our lives move along more seamlessly. Apps can also play a part in monitoring our mental health, from tracking moods to guiding us through meditative exercises. With so many mental health-focused apps on the market, it can be hard to know where to start. Here are three of our favorites to get you started in your digital wellness journey.
Ever gone through a string of “bad days” and wondered why in hindsight? Do you find your mood going up and down often? Or maybe you’re striving to stick to a new habit for the sake of your overall well-being. Daylio is an easy-to-use mood tracker app that helps you keep tabs on how you’re feeling and track progress in creating and maintaining new habits. All of the app’s features are free to users, with a premium option available at $9.99 per year. Daylio helps users visualize their mood over time, with gorgeous graphs and statistics generated from daily entries. The app’s interface is friendly and inviting, with color customization options, a journaling feature to record thoughts and feelings, and multiple graph displays to show your mood changes over time. The best part? Daylio makes it quick and easy to log your mood, with short prompts twice a day that appear right on your phone’s home screen. If you’re looking for an efficient way to keep track of your mood over time, Daylio might be your new favorite app.
Ever find yourself awake at night because you never really got to sleep in the first place? Millions of people worldwide struggle to fall asleep for a variety of reasons. Stress, anxieties, and intrusive thoughts are just a few reasons why many can’t fall right into their REM cycle when their head hits the pillow at night. Fortunately, Calm is here to help. Calm is an app that’s here to remedy all of our sleep struggles. Calm has a myriad of guided meditations, meditative exercises, guided breathing techniques, and “sleep stories” to help you fall asleep more mindfully. It’s been ranked by app stores as the #1 app for sleep and meditation and was awarded App of the Year by Apple in 2017. For $12.99 a month, the app grants you access to all of its features, along with a free 1-week trial when you first sign up. Calm also partners with many employers and universities, offering free subscriptions to employees and college students alike. Check with your institution before signing up to see if they participate. If your goal is to get more restful nights of sleep, give Calm a try.
Headspace is your one-stop meditation and mental wellness app. Whether you’re looking to start your day off mindfully or catch some more restful zzz’s, Headspace has it all on their comprehensive and easy-to-use platform. The app includes hundreds of articles on various topics, from running meditation ideas to sleep hacks, along with stress-reduction workout routines, “how-to” videos, guided meditations, and more. Headspace will also curate personalized playlists with exercises and meditations tailored to your needs and goals. Their meditations topics range from workplace stress to improving focus and reducing anxiety. Headspace also supplies kid-friendly content, such as guided meditations and exercises well-suited for children. For $12.99 a month and you’re first week free, you get your money’s worth and more. Sticking by their mission “to improve the health and happiness of the world,” Headspace is now offering a free year of their Plus subscription to those who are unemployed due to the globally unprecedented effects of COVID-19. Now that’s a wellness win-win.
Well, there you have it! Three starting places for diving into the ever-expanding world of mental health and wellness apps. Do you have a favorite app that wasn’t listed here? Feel free to share below and let us know what you like best about it!