Have you ever wondered what the docile tones of Bob Ross, Harry Styles, Matthew McCaughey or Joanna Lumley would sound like reading you, yes you, a bedtime story? If your answer is yes, then San Francisco based meditation company, Calm has turned your dreams into reality.
With soothing, narrated sleep stories read by countless celebrities, it’s no wonder Calm is the world’s favourite meditation app right now, with a whopping fifty million downloads. Offering over one hundred mindfulness meditations to listen to, Calm has something for every situation.
Cost: 7-day free trial then A79.99 billed annually, or get a lifetime subscription for $A549.99.
The brainchild of former Buddhist Monk, Andy Puddicombe, Headspace aims to teach meditation and mindfulness to as many people as possible.
Headspace has a strong focus on building consistency, optimising your results and creating long-lasting habits. The app even keeps track of how often you meditate and creates streaks to encourage daily mindfulness.
Beyond meditation, Headspace encourages movement through a guided walk and workout series as well as soundscapes and sleep music to help you fall and stay asleep.
If you’re someone that wakes up in the night only to struggle to fall back to sleep altogether, Headspace also has a nighttime SOS series to get you counting sheep.
Cost: 7-day free trial and then $19.99/month or $149.99/year.
Following the personal experience of illness, Ella Mills turned to whole foods and a plant-based diet to overhaul her life, and so Deliciously Ella was created.
While Deliciously Ella is not your traditional meditation app, it takes a holistic approach to wellness with a cocktail of plant-based recipes, meditations, podcast episodes and yoga videos to get you on your way.
The app has a strong focus on wellness and ‘making veggies cool’, but it is anything but boring and all categories go above and beyond, with constant updates dropping almost weekly.
Deliciously Ella’s point of difference is its variety, offering a place to earth yourself and indulge with a chocolate chip cookie recipe.
Cost: £0.99/month subscription (approx. A$1.80).
With over fifty-thousand free guided meditations and music tracks, it’s no wonder Americans spent the most time on Insight Timer in 2019 compared to other popular meditation apps.
With guided practices from the likes of Russell Brand, this app is truly unique. With such an abundance on offer, Insight Timer covers everything from chakra meditation to manifestation and resilience.
Meaning you can easily choose what you would like to focus on each time you meditate, depending on how your mood, how much time you have or the area that you would most like to explore.
Cost: US$59.99/year, or monthly for US$9.99/month.
A reasonably new player in the meditation app world, Bloom wants to help you to create a better version of you through mindfulness meditation.
With strategies to help relieve stress and anxiety and settle an overwhelmed mind, Bloom is perfectly positioned to help you calm your mind and find clarity.
The app is centred around blooming lotus’, with the simple task of logging in daily to complete a single meditation, and in turn, gaining a new lotus to add to your growth tree.
With added extras like daily astrology and mindful colouring, the Bloom app has everything you need to start your mindfulness journey.
Cost: US$86.99/year, or monthly for US$14.49/month.
We all experience ebbs and flows in our emotions, but sometimes things can become overwhelming, and that’s where Aura comes in.
Recognising the ever-changing nature of thoughts, feelings and situations, Aura asks you to describe how you’re feeling; stressed, okay, great, anxious or can’t sleep. It then asks how it can help; to improve focus or happiness among other options. From these questions, Aura suggests a meditation specific to how you’re feeling and what you need at that moment.
Simply put, Aura helps people to better manage emotions, reducing feelings of anxiety, helping you manage your stress levels and assisting you in sleeping restfully. With tracks as short as three minutes, Aura makes finding peace within the chaos of life easy.
Cost: Membership costs US$12/month, US$60/year, or $400 for lifetime use.
Siting the disproportionate incidence of poor mental health in young people, Smiling Mind is on a mission to improve the mental wellbeing of 5.5 million young people by 2021.
Smiling Mind is a free app is used in schools, workplaces and at home, and is highly regarded by users globally for its ability to reduce anxiety and stress levels in its users, improve concentration and productivity and to help better understand and regulate emotions.
The Smiling Mind app keeps things simple, asking you to set aside ten minutes daily, emphasising the importance of embracing ritual when it comes to meditation practice, switch up your thinking to incorporate meditation into your day rather than treating it as a chore.
Cost: Smiling Mind is a free app for all users.
Ten Percent Happier
With over 350 guided meditations, a sleep meditation and a ‘Daily Dose’ series, a Ten Percent Happier membership gives you access to all the tools required to achieve a ten per cent spike in your overall happiness.
When you first download the app, it takes you through a quiz with a series of questions about your goals, your history of meditation practice and what time you prefer to schedule your meditations. From the questionnaire, Ten Percent Happier devise a personalised plan to ensure you have the best chance possible to get the most out of your time spent meditating.
What you get is a tailor-made meditation program designed to your own specific needs.
Cost: 7-day free trial, $139.99/year after the trial period.
Wildfulness: Meditate and Relax
Combining the known benefits of meditation and nature, Wildfulness helps users improve their mental wellbeing and sleep through exposure to the wild through meditation.
Immerse yourself in the great outdoors through beautifully animated, hand-illustrated nature scapes and sounds.
It is crucial, now more than ever, when lockdowns restrict our ability to escape to the wilderness that we look for other ways to immerse ourselves.
Wildfulness allows you to take time out of your busy schedule, especially when stuck indoors for the majority of the day, to sit virtually in nature, and to transport you from your stale working from home office to a lively forest.
Pzizz - sleep, nap, focus
Garnering high praise from the likes of Harry Potter author, J.K. Rowling and former NBA star, Roy Hibbert, Pzizz is the ultimate tool for any insomniac.
Pzizz uses the power of sound to encourage sleep or focus, just like you would use your favourite pump-up track to wake you up or love song playlist to bring a tear to your eye.
Pzizz’s dreamscapes use psychoacoustics and have guided voices layered on top of the calming music to talk the user through the early stages of sleep. And the results are pretty astounding, listening to music while attempting to go to sleep and during sleep significantly improves sleep quality and reduces disturbed sleep.
Cost: US$9.99/month or US$69.99/year
Reflectly: Self Care Journal
The digital journal powered by artificial intelligence, Reflectly, enables users to track how they are feeling by recording emotions, thoughts and problems encountered.
Reflectly analyses your data, tracking your mood throughout the month and on a larger scale throughout the year.
The visual presentation of information in the form of a timeline via artificial intelligence allows you to see where their mood may fluctuate, allowing for reflection and consideration of the events or circumstances that may have resulted in the feelings experienced.
Keeping a daily journal, with questions prompts you to look back on the day gone by, and is cathartic allowing you to process the events of the day.
Cost: $9.99/Month or $47.99/Year
Family owned and run meditation app, Buddhify has managed to create a tool that genuinely allows you to thread mindfulness into your day. By creating a product that fits into the modern on-the-go lifestyle, Buddhify makes it easy to squeeze in a mindful moment throughout the day.
The guided meditations on the app are designed to be listened to while you go about your daily routine, running errands, catching the train to work or cleaning the house, or whatever it may be.
Buddhify takes the mundane out of boring daily tasks, improving productivity for the time-poor modern meditator, and optimising time otherwise wasted to enhance our well being through the practice of meditation.
Cost: $40 annual membership.
With a whopping 2000 mediation tracks, Simple Habit is well and truly on the way to helping us stress less, achieve more and live better.
Simple Habit is designed to be for every situation imaginable; lunch breaks, insomnia or anxiety.
Whether five minutes or twenty, the team of experts at Simple Habit and their guided recordings will help you calm the mind and encourage the body to relax. We know, just five minutes a day of mindful meditation and known to improve productivity, sleep quality and reduce feelings of anxiety.
The app tracks your Mindful Minutes, to encourage consistency, keep users motivated and ensure this is a habit adopted for life.
Cost: Premium membership US$89.99/year, US$11.99/month or US$299.99 for lifetime access.