People who know me would agree, I’m a pretty intense, hyped-up, over-caffeinated New Yorker. Heck, “relaxation” for me involves spinning my legs at insane speeds on a stationary bike for 45 minutes at SoulCycle. There's an inner peace you find when all you can do is focus on breathing: Breathe in, breathe out. Meditation is all about the breath, right?
Well, it’s more than just that. It’s also about training your mind to find greater awareness. And while I admit it is a little contradictory at first, with the right approach, the very device that can make me feel so unfocused (More e-mail! Look, Facebook updates. Oh, someone tweeted me. Squirrel!) can also be my guide to focus the mind: The smart phone.
This blog post is a companion to our podcast exploring tech and mindfulness. Listen here:
If you’re like me and didn’t even know where to start with meditation (or worry about the time commitment), I suggest the Headspace app. With this app, former Buddhist monk Andy Puddicombe guides you through 10-minute meditations over 10 days for free. After that, if you’re hooked and want to continue, you need to subscribe. (Is it ok to admit I’ve only made it to day five after two months?)
There are actually a lot of meditation apps to check out. Most are available for both iOS and Android and they range in price from free to about $10 dollars. If I missed some, leave a comment below or let us know which ones work best for you.
Namaste (Wait, is that just for yoga?).
Mindfulness Meditation by Mental Workout
Meditate – Meditation Timer
Arianna Huffington: How To De-Stress With the GPS For the Soul App
Breathe 2 Relax
Buddhist Meditation Trainer
Take a break
Room to Breathe Meditation