Considering learning to meditate but you can’t find the time to attend a class? It can be difficult to make space for an hour long weekly guided meditation session given the increasingly busy lives we lead. The irony is it’s just what we need given the stress we’re under.
“It’s easy to lapse into ignoring what we’re actually feeling and what we need at any given moment, and the quality of our life suffers as a result,” says meditation and mindfulness expert, Lisa Hughes.
She discovered meditation 12 years ago when she found herself increasingly stressed due to the pressure of juggling a high-powered office job with three young children.
“It has completely changed my life for the better,” says Lisa. “I now find myself getting angry less frequently than I used to. I’m also more resilient and less stressed. I would recommend meditation to anyone – and you don’t have attend a class to do it.”
Here are her top five meditation apps, which you can use anywhere – even from the comfort of your home.
Headspace is a popular easy-to-use app which also has guided meditations and allows you to choose a ‘pack’ of meditations at a time. For example, there’s a starter pack, a 10-day pack, various themed packs and so on.
“It is easy to understand and ideal for someone learning the basics,” says Lisa.
This meditation app provides meditation sessions based around themes such as music, sleep or relaxation.
“It’s flexible and you can set the meditations for as long as you like,” comments Lisa. “You don’t have to be in a cave surrounded by candles to meditate,” she adds. “You could be at home, or in a board room or sitting in your car for example.”
3. Mind Valley
This is a digital learning platform which offers a range of ways to achieve personal growth, including meditation.
“I like this app because it combines techniques like visualisation in an attempt to use meditation to bring about beneficial consequences in your life,” explains Lisa.
“It’s an interesting approach because in traditional meditation, there’s no goal and striving for something is generally frowned upon,” she adds. “I think this works well however.”
4. Insight Timer
This app tells you exactly how many other people around the world are using it at the same time and will suit those who feel isolated when meditating alone.
“It offers a range of meditation teachers and also allows you to buddy-up with other people. You can also measure your progress by how many minutes or days you have spent meditating.”
For those who get bored easily while meditating, Happify is perfect.
“It uses gaming techniques to keep your attention while helping to build good meditation and mental habits,” says Lisa. “It also offers packs for decreasing your stress level and reducing worry and anxiety.”
The first level is free then you can unlock programmes with a subscription.
For more information on meditation visit arenacoaching.ie