When I imagine peace, I think of a relaxing abode in a natural setting—no deadlines, grocery shopping, or distracting smartphones. Unfortunately, most of us don’t have the advantage of an ashram or even a beach cottage to sink into our bodies and reconnect with our deeper selves.
But the rapid changes of our world have afforded us new ways to check-in. When you’re stuck on a bus or need a break from work, slow down with a simple practice that aligns your focus with well-being and purpose. With these four mobile apps, you can pave a path toward mindfulness with 5 or 10 minutes a day:
Yoga Studio App is the ideal app to take yoga with you anywhere. There are collections for different focuses, levels, or intentions. Not interested in yoga, the app also features a collection of twenty-seven meditations to help you find your zen. What's great about the app is that they also include a variety of teachers so you'll find someone and someone you love.
Meditation Studio curates teachings from top instructors in the field of mindfulness. I love filling my smartphone with a range of meditations from their online library. My favorite is the beach walk meditation, which warms me up during cold New England winters. If you’re interested in a more formal introduction to mindfulness, sign up for one of their classes.
3. I Ching
The I Ching is an ancient Chinese text that has bestowed wisdom on readers since 750 BC. I turn to it when I need sage advice and clarity. Also known as the Book of Changes, it’s gained a following across the world because of its enlightened perspectives on the human condition. Brian Browne Walker’s translation also takes the form of an app for your mobile device. You can consult this ancient source of insight with the tap of your finger.
Stop, Breathe & Think gives users a clear curriculum for self-compassion. Created by Tools for Peace, this design-centered application provides you with a venue to check-in and describe your feelings. It then offers meditations based on your current emotional state for the amount of time that works for you. Their guided breathing exercise is a staple during work breaks—I use it to transition from one big task to the next.
Happier is an online community grounded in one principle: gratitude. When we express thanks, we release toxic emotions, subdue pain, and foster healthy self-esteem. Happier is one way to move in that direction. Their platform gives you the space to share something you’re grateful for each day in words or photos. Invite your friends—and start sharing!
There’s no “right” way to practice mindfulness. Instead of holding yourself to set expectations, try different methods until you find the combination that offers you awareness.