If you’re looking for a way to feel more centered these days, one of the best things you can do is to take up a mindfulness practice—and there’s a plethora of apps eager to help in exchange for your downloads and dollars.
More than 2,500 meditation apps have launched since 2015, so it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the choices. But it’s important to figure out which app will suit your needs and tastes, since we’re much more likely to keep up habits that we enjoy. And when it comes to meditating, consistency is key. “Research shows that the more consistently a person meditates, the greater impact this training can have on physically changing your brain for the better,” says Annika Rose, a researcher on mindfulness and well-being and author of a book on mindfulness.
Rose says that the right meditation app can make a big difference in our lives. As co-author of a 2014 paper published in the Journal of Happiness Studies, she helped lead a study that ran a randomized controlled trial on 121 people, in which one group was assigned to use the meditation app Headspace for 10 days, while the control group used a list-making app. The results: “Those learning mindfulness meditation techniques were significantly happier and had higher well-being levels compared to the control intervention group,” Rose says.