Should I Use a Mindfulness App?

By Meredith Dangel

Why mindfulness?

I often recommend mindfulness practices to my clients as a way to manage stress, anxiety, and depression. Mindfulness is the practice of being present in the moment, without judgment or distraction. Mindfulness has been shown to have numerous mental and physical health benefits, including but not limited to reducing stress, improving focus, and increasing emotional regulation.

Most of us know what it feels like to be on autopilot. We act without making conscious decisions and react to stressful situations without pausing to think. Most of us know what it feels like to become stuck thinking about the past or ruminating on the future. And all of us know what it feels like to be stressed! Of course, these experiences will happen from time to time. But living this way all the time robs us of autonomy, presence, joy, and even physical health. 

Apps to the rescue… maybe?

In recent years, there has been an explosion of apps that offer guided meditations, breathing exercises, and other mindfulness practices in an easy-to-use format. Apps can be a helpful tool for clients who are looking to integrate mindfulness into their daily routine. The apps can provide structure and accountability, making it easier to establish a regular mindfulness practice. They can also offer a variety of practices, allowing clients to find the ones that work best for them.

It’s important to remember that mindfulness apps are not a replacement for therapy or a substitute for in-person mindfulness training. While the apps can be a helpful tool, they are not tailored to individual needs and do not offer the same level of personalization and feedback that a therapist can provide. 

Overall, apps can be a helpful tool for individuals looking to integrate mindfulness into their daily routine. For individuals who are new to mindfulness or have busy schedules, apps can provide a convenient and accessible way to practice. Many apps offer a variety of features such as guided meditations, daily reminders, and progress tracking. These features can help individuals stay on track with their practice.

Give it a try

If you’re not sure if a mindfulness app is a good idea for you, start by listening for free. My personal favorite app is Insight Timer, with thousands of free guides available on a variety of topics. You can also search Youtube for free mediation guides. Other subscription-based apps offer free trials.

Ultimately, the effectiveness of mindfulness apps will depend on the individual’s personal preferences, goals, and needs. I encourage individuals to approach mindfulness with an open mind. Be willing to experiment with different techniques and tools. While apps can certainly be a helpful resource, it is important to remember that the practice of mindfulness extends far beyond a digital platform. With dedication and practice, mindfulness can become a way of life and a powerful way to cultivate inner peace and resilience.

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