Mindfulness is noticing and being curious about what is happening right now. Without judgement or criticism, we can become observers of our mind and body. We can use our senses of touch, taste, sight, smell and sound as tools to bring us into present moment awareness.
Our young people need to learn strategies, develop skills and to have access to tools to promote and support positive mental well-being. Just like going to the gym or learning an instrument, we must practice using mindfulness to see the benefits. We can improve our mindfulness skills through meditation to help us notice our minds and bodies and to help us tame our monkey mind.
Here is a list of apps we have trialled and tested with young people to help train our brains.
1. Insight Timer
Insight Timer app has both free and paid content. It has a library with millions of mindfulness and meditation recordings for you to access from teachers all over the world.
You can follow along with recordings or live meditations of your favourite teachers and I too, have some guided meditations which you can access here for free.
2. Smiling Mind
Smiling Mind is a free app which has mindfulness programs targeted for specific age groups. There are also programs designed for both personal and professional use for educators and health professionals.
As a teacher, I would use this daily with my class after our break times. Smiling Minds is great to introduce the concepts of mindfulness to kids, teens and beginners.
Calm is a personal favourite of mine and has both paid and free content available. You are never too old for a bedtime story, and you can access sleep stories which are great for those who enjoy listening to something to drift off to sleep.
The app includes access to kids meditations and guided courses along with The Spark, which are well-being conversations. The app also includes daily guided meditations called the Daily Calm.
Please note we do not receive any kickbacks or endorsements for recommending any of these apps. We use them ourselves and believe they are awesome.
I would love to know what apps you use to connect with your mindfulness or meditation practice. Feel free to share your resources or ask any questions in the comments below.