It’s no secret that stress takes a serious toll on your body and psyche. In our constantly connected lives, it’s important to take a little time each day to be mindful of our breath and surroundings at this moment. Meditation allows us a moment of escape. Contrary to popular belief, there’s no need to meditate for hours on end; spending just a few minutes each day can improve concentration and reduce stress.
With the number of excellent meditation apps available for iPhone and Android, it’s easy spend a few moments practicing mindfulness from anywhere. With just your smartphone and a pair of headphones, it’s easy to meditate in the office or even on the train. Here’s our selection of best meditation apps to help you build your daily practice.
As one of New York’s premier meditation studios, Inscape knows a thing or two about about mindfulness. The Inscape app lets you experience everything the studio has to offer no matter where you live. It allows you to select from a number of different guided meditation exercises, set meditation timers, and even keep a practice journal. The app also offers an amazing selection of sound meditations.
Inscape offers monthly subscriptions starting at $8. There’s a 14-day trial available to new members, so you’ll have a little time to try out the app before committing.
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Headspace is one of the oldest, and most well-known meditation apps available for iOS and Android. The subscription-based app helps you build a meditation by providing a Foundation Series to newcomers. Once you’ve worked through the preliminary meditations, Headspace offers a huge catalog of guided meditations.
Headspace subscriptions start at $8, however the company frequently offers promo codes and sales to make the app more affordable.
Stop, Breathe & Think offers much of the same functionality as other apps on our list — meditation exercises at different lengths and focuses. However, Stop, Breathe & Think also has a quick and easy check-in tool that you can use to find the perfect session for you at that exact moment. These check-ins help build mindfulness, the cornerstone of any meditation practice, by helping you recognize emotions and feelings you may experience during certain situations.
Stop, Breathe & Think is available to download for free, but certain meditation sessions cost anywhere between $1 and $3.
Timeless offers a simple, minimalist user interface. The app allows you to select a meditation duration from 8 to 32 minutes. Courses, guided meditations, and personal data is available on the bottom menu. The Timeless app makes it easy to set goals and track your progress.
Timeless offers basic guided meditations and some free courses, but you will have to subscribe to unlock the more advanced guides. The free content within the app is excellent, and should be enough to help you decide if this is the meditation app for you. If you choose to build your meditation practice with Timeless, monthly subscriptions start at $9. If you’re an Apple Watch owner, then you’ll be happy to know Timeless is compatible with Apple Watch.
Aura uses AI to create a personalized meditation experience. When you open the app, it greets you and asks you to answer a few simple questions, starting with your name and how you feel at that moment. The app creates a 3-minute session based on your answers. These 3-minute sessions are offered to you every day for free. Like other meditation apps, you can track your mood, but you can also write about your feelings by making notes within the app.
Aura is compatible with the Apple Watch, and allows you to share data with iOS Health. While Aura offers a decent selection of free meditations, premium content is available with monthly subscriptions starting at $12.
Update: Added Inscape to the list and removed 10% Happier, Calm, and Omvana.