10 Apps For The Calm You’re Seeking Now

Give yourself a welcome break from the news with these soothing gems.

Mar 15, 2020

If like most of us, current events due to the novel coronavirus are leaving you with thoughts whirling around in your head, anxiety that’s a little hard to shake off, and less-than-perfect sleep, help is at hand in some amazing, restorative apps that offer the salve of calm.

Innovative smartphone apps designed to place you in a protective, tranquil mindset, can help you de-stress, clear your mind and focus on remote work when you need to. We’re highlighting several apps that span differing but effective approaches, from mind mapping to guided meditation, tranquil ambient music to color therapy and more.

Calm

Welcome a sense of calmness into your life with the award-winning Calm relaxation app for both beginners and more advanced meditation fans. Choose from over 50 million downloads including masterclasses, and music to help beat insomnia and anxiety. Some are read by celebs with soothing voices.

Set yourself daily challenges to discover your calm and develop a deep understanding of your mind and body. You can also choose an open-ended, unguided timed meditation. Breathing exercises are available to help you relax.

Dipping into a range of journals for all elements of your lifestyle such as “Creative Living Beyond Fear”, an “Discovering Happiness” will help you gain insight into what makes you feel relaxed through some self-reflection.

Headspace

Headspace is one of the most popular apps for guided meditations, mindfulness techniques and better sleep.

This app offers a basics course covering the essentials of meditation. It then goes on to apply this technique to explore different spheres including sleep, exercise and focus.

“Sleepcasts”, for instance, are a little like adult bedtime stories helping you visualize calming experiences like a walk through a garden.  Special animations equip users with new skills and help answer your mindfulness questions.

Headspace also offers short two or three minute meditation sessions for time-strapped users, designed to help if you’re going through moments of panic, stress and anxiety. You can also add friends to help motivate, and to meditate with them as well.

MindMeister

If remote working is starting to feel a bit much, mind-mapping app MindMeister helps you brainstorm your thoughts freely in a visual form.

Using the app, you can quickly and easily organize your thoughts, prioritize them, and generate new ones. Use the tools provided to create a map including different themes, styles, colors, and icons. You can also collaborate with others to create a mind map in real time.

Ambi Pro

Many people find that ambient noise helps them relax and focus by working to mask the distracting world around them. What’s special about this ambient sounds app is that instead of looping audio recordings, it blends a set of changing noise algorithmically so it never repeats.

Ambi Pro Users can also design their own presets and save them, plus an automatic timer can be set to switch off sound after a given time.

Day One (iOS)

Keeping a daily journal is an ideal way to help you organize your thoughts and clear your mind. Day One’s beautiful interface makes journaling that feels like an almost sacred, private digital space easy. Free of distractions, it helps you focus on specific thoughts.

You can personalize how you view your entries, by calendar, timeline, maps or photos.

SuperBetter

SuperBetter is a colorful app with a mission to build resilience, in its own words “the ability to stay strong, motivated and optimistic even in the face of change and difficult challenges.”

This is one of a new crop of apps turning battling anxiety into a game! Perhaps this isn’t surprising, as gamification is increasingly used as a tool for behavior modification with the user presented as a hero who overcomes challenges. SuperBetter is the invention of author and game designer, Jane McGonigel, who wants to see a game developer win a Nobel Peace Prize!

Breathe2Relax

Breathing from your diaphragm, like singers are trained to do, has been shown to diminish stress and anxiety. It decreases the body’s “fight-or-flight” (stress) response while helping you remain calm.

Instead of focusing on meditation, this app zooms in on breathing technique to help you reduce your stress levels. There’s an option to listen to music to help create an optimally calm ambience.

Smiling Mind

This beautifully-named relaxation app is designed for children of all ages as well as adults. The programs on Smiling Mind aimed at adults address the pressure and other challenges of daily life.

Users can choose from various meditation lengths, and are encouraged to check in with themselves at the start and end of a session to quantify their stress levels.

Colorfy

Since coloring books captivated the imagination of a worldwide public a few years back, we all know that adults as well as kids can enjoy this activity that both calms and relaxes. Colorfy is one of the most user-friendly digital coloring apps for smartphones and tablets.

Choose from over 1,000 different pictures of animals, gardens, famous paintings etc. Users select a color palette, and them tap to color. Select from a variety of brush types to create different effects. You can even add your own drawings to paint. Share your creations on social media, or preview your drawings IRW via the app’s augmented reality virtual gallery.

Aura

Aura, an app for emotional health, is for you if your life seems too hectic for meditation, and you feel you can’t find the time to stop and give yourself the self-care you need.

It’s a mindfulness system offering a broad smorgasbord of life coaching sessions, inspirational stories and diverse meditations from well-known experts to help you “take care of your emotions, get restful sleep, and become the best you.” Options range from three minutes to an hour to you’ll be able to fit self-care into your schedule.

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DAPHNE KASRIEL ALEXANDER, EDITOR IN CHIEF
Daphne has a background in editing, writing and global trends. She is inspired by trends seeing more people care about sharing and protecting resources, enjoying experiences over products and celebrating their unique selves. Making the world a better place has been a constant motivation in her work.