MAPPS Guide2017-09-08T16:25:21+00:00

The Happynesshub MAPPS Guide

Feeling in the mood for meditation? Need a few tips on technique? Or maybe you’re curious about the options on offer? At Happynesshub HQ, we’ve been testing out various meditations apps (MAPPS) available. Kaira and Paul share their experiences on some of the meditation apps out there.

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About: A nifty, cartoon-like app that focuses on just one moment. The idea is to experience just the one moment, for one minute at a time. Nothing more, nothing less. Simples. There is, however, the added option of the “warm up” and “cool down”, plus some guided tips on focussing on your meditative moment – if you need it.

Kaira Says: As a novice at meditation, the app is particularly helpful in helping me quieten my ever racing mind within a manageable time frame. My peers also seem quite appreciative when I am silent for one whole minute…psht.

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About: Voiced by Andy Puddicombe, who has been “doing to meditation what Jamie Oliver has done for food”, Headspace offers a free ‘basic package’ including meditation exercises to help reduce stress and anxiety. There are more advanced packages available as an ‘in-app’ purchase if you want to take your meditation to the next level. In essence, this app is a personal trainer for your mind, offering over 14,000 available downloads.

Paul Says: I used this as an initial way into meditation, starting on the free Take 10 series – 10 minutes of meditation a day for 10 days. I then subscribed for the year, which unlocked longer meditations on different topics – including themes on relationships and health – and also a range of single meditations. There’s even an emergency SOS section for a bite sized meditative hit if it’s ever needed. #justsayin.

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About: This app, although catering to adults too, aims to make meditation especially accessible for the younger generation. Simply choose your age bracket and tap into the various free mindfulness exercises that the app provides. Smiling Mind has a library full of programmes specifically designed to assist people with the pressures of daily life.

Kaira Says: As a university student, this app is ideal for providing me with age appropriate exercises that I can seamlessly fit into my busy schedule. Meditation and mindfulness are no longer alienating concepts, they are a necessary time out from the stresses of my day.

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About: Wildflowers describes itself, “in parts gameplay, meditation and logging moods”. The interplay between body, mind and meditation is key to this MAPP and before and after each session you take a snapshot (yes a literal snapshot), where you log your mood and heart rate. These are saved to your journal, where you can see the before and after effects of your meditation.

Paul Says: It felt like an interactive experience, giving you scientific research, (day one being how Harvard researchers found that meditation literally rewires the brain), then taking you through a virtual landscape before meditating. After trying out the app, encouragingly, I was told that my mood was “stable”.

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About: Buddhify markets itself as “peace of mind for just the price of a cup of coffee with no hidden or additional costs”, and that it is. At just the flat out price of £4.99, this MAPP has over 80 tracks available all based around what you are doing at the time.

Kaira Says: The tracks on this MAPP pinpoint your exact emotions triggered from the various activities you do throughout the day. As someone who wakes up in the morning feeling like a bear who has just come out of hibernation, the ‘waking up’ tracks available were much appreciated.

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About: Calm was mentioned in The Guardian as one of the best 5 meditation apps. It initially offers a free programme called the “7 Days of Calm”. Its focus is upon reducing anxiety, sleeping better and feeling happier – something we’d all love to achieve.

Paul Says: One thing here which I loved were the scenes in which you can customise the interface with. A simple yet effective idea, where you can choose the background sounds and images that you see in the app. (For me, silent clouds floating on my phone is a favourite!) It was nice just using the meditation timer – for the moments where you don’t want a guided experience – and relax into 5 minutes of calming sounds, taking me from my desk in London to a mountain lake where the sun is shining and the waves are lapping the shore.

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About: Relax Melodies offers comprehensive short-term meditative sleep programmes to help you get that much needed restful sleep. The app is free to download with a ‘free meditation of the week’.

Kaira Says: I tried the ‘sound’ section of the app. Here I could make my own personal mixes of sounds and melodies tailored to what makes me feel relaxed. From wind chimes, to urban rain to the crackling sound of a campfire, the app has it all. Lets just say, I’m now DJ-ing my way into mindfulness.

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About: If you don’t want to commit to a time length in mediation, there are various breathing apps that just focus on the breath. Essence is simply just a series of circles that get bigger and smaller as you follow them, it tells you to breathe in, or to breathe out. It keeps going until you decide to stop.

Paul Says: It’s really quite mesmerising, and the non-timed aspect of the MAPP allows you to take as long or as little time as you need. The app may be useful for those who experience sudden bouts of stress and need something immediate that can calm them down at their own pace.