For those who are unaware, today is World Mental Health Day, and in conjunction with that, here are some features and apps on Apple Watch and App Store that can help you better manage your mental health.
If you have an Apple Watch, utilise the Breathe app, whereby there will be reminders every now and then to provide you with brief deep-breathing exercises so you can counter your daily stress. The animations will bring calm so that you will not be tensed throughout the day and as this app is now available as a watch face, you only need to raise your wrist to use the app. Besides that, the Apple Watch now runs on watchOS 5 which manages your notifications better. You can now use interactive controls within the notifications without launching your apps and also manage your notification preferences, whereby turning on the Do Not Disturb from the control centre will allow you to have some quiet time without notifications.
Apart from that, there are also apps you can download in your iPhone and Apple Watch. These apps are made for mindfulness so you can efficiently improve your mental health. One of the apps are called Omvana, which allows you to customise your ambient sound and your meditation audio. You can control the volume of each of them and save it in your library. Omvana can be connected with your HealthKit and recommend meditations based on your levels of stress and your state of mind.
Calm is another app that helps you meditate. You can choose your goal of meditation in the beginning, whether it is to get better sleep, increase happiness or so on. There are features such as sleep, meditate, music, calm body and breathe. What is unique about Calm is that the sleep feature reads you bedtime stories to help you sleep, whereas the calm body feature suggests different stretches for your body at different time of the day. Calm’s guided meditations range from 3 minutes to 25 minutes, allowing you to find the suitable length of meditation for your schedule.
Next, there is the Insight Timer that offers courses for mental health management, and also has a timer function for you to time your meditation period. There are many guided meditations and talks led by experts in the app, and new free guided meditations are added daily. The app also have a community tab, where you can get in touch with other users and befriend them through friend requests.
Aura is another app that can help improve your mental health, as it tracks your mood daily, and suggest meditations based on your mood. It has 4 channels; Meditation, Life Coaching, Story and Music. Aura provides 3-minute meditations so that you can do it quickly without disrupting your daily activities. You can also write in the gratitude journal daily, which keeps your positivity in check.
The App Store also have an app named Headspace that have meditations on how to cope with your eating habits, negative emotions, self-esteem, work and performance, and few others. You can access the full Headspace meditation library by subscribing to them, and they have an animation library so you can get better meditation with visual aid.
Last but not least, you can download an app called AutoSleep Tracker for Watch on the App Store for RM12.90. It automatically tracks your sleep from your Apple Watch without needing you to press on any buttons and analyses your sleep patterns, but the analysis only occurs if you wear the Apple Watch to bed. This would be convenient for those who wants to plan their sleeping habits for better health.
While most of the app are free, do note that most of them have trial periods and requires subscription fees after the trial periods. The feature that tells bedtime stories should be a favourable one as it can help those who have trouble sleeping get more rest at night. With that said, hopefully these apps will be useful for those who are trying to be more mindful of their mental health.