Since beginning my meditation journey in 2019 I’ve been pretty consistent with making it part of my morning and nightly ritual. I’ve noticed many changes within myself; friends and family noticed these changes as well. At first, meditation can be daunting, the thought of sitting in silence for 5-10min and your mind racing isn’t easy. Meditation apps are great because they help guide you and provide many words of wisdom. They’re many meditation apps on the market and many need a subscription (totally worth it!). I’m sharing my top choices of daily meditation apps!
Meditation has many benefits we hear about it all the time! It’s excellent if you want to improve focus, have increased patience, and for practicing mindfulness! What is mindfulness? Simply, being in the present and fully aware; less reactive to stressful situations.
I was very much a skeptic at first; if you’re reading this you probably have some doubts too! My reasoning to start meditating was to increase self-awareness and have better focus. What’s your reason for getting into a meditation practice?
* Apps are not in any particular order.
Daily Meditation Apps to Start A Meditation Practice
Formerly 10% Happier (inspired by the book of the same name) is one of my absolute favorites! The app has a free version giving you access to The Basics, various challenges (some challenges you can join for free), and their daily dose. Which is a new meditation to practice daily. What sets them apart is their ‘daily dose’ gives you the option to select the length of your meditation time. You can select anywhere from 10 min. up to 20 min.
They have a large library and work with numerous meditation teachers such as Sharon Salzberg, Joseph Goldstein, Jeff Warren, and more! I should also note, before starting a meditation within one of their challenges there’s a video explaining the session at hand and the benefits! If you wish to do an unguided meditation, they offer that option as well.
Aside from daily meditations and challenges, they offer sleep guides. Ten Percent is also a podcast! You can listen to episodes from within the meditation app ad-free (if you are a paying member) or wherever you listen to your podcasts.
Lastly, Ten Percent is bringing back live coaching! You can join the list by filling out their 2 min. form here for more information and future updates. *A paid membership may be required for live coaching. The app is free but limited, you can get a 7-day all-access free trial though the membership price is steep at $99/yr.
One of the more popular ones. This is admittedly my most used app during my morning meditations. Calm has expanded its library so much since the days of my joining! When I joined the only option available was their ‘daily calm’, now you have the option of ‘daily trip’ meditation with Jeff Warren and ‘daily Jay’.
Like Ten Percent Calm too offers sleep meditations, afternoon reset meditations, soundscape music and so much more! With Calm you are able to select ‘scenes’ that display backgrounds and sounds of your choosing. Don’t want to hear the background noise while meditating? You can simply mute the volume within the app to only hear the teacher.
As mentioned you also get a ‘daily Jay’ with Jay Shetty! He has partnered with Calm to share 7-min inspiring wisdom. If you’re a fan of Jay’s you’ll love this! I for sure do!
But that’s not all they offer! Aside from many different meditations, soundscapes, and sleep stories you also get ‘daily move’ which is a daily stretch with instructor Mel Mah.
Its popularity is for good reason, Calm is an excellent app for all users alike, especially beginners! It’s free to download and if you choose to start a 7-day free trial you will be charged afterward. The prices are as follows: $14.99/mo, $69.99/yr, or $399.99/lifetime.
Unlike Calm and Ten Percent Shine is women-owned and has a team made up of 80% BIPOC! Upon signing up for the app you fill in your info and they deliver a personalized experience to suit your needs! On the home screen, the first option you’re given is a daily check-in. Though, some features are locked if you’re not a paying member it’s great that you are still able to write your gratitude!
When you visit the library you are able to set your intention for the week; which they will then customize meditations to keep you focused on set intention. One thing that Shine offers that is a standout (in my opinion) is their Your Identity x Mental Health library. They have everything from Latinx Mental Health, Black Mental Health, BIPOC Mental Health, AAPI Mental Health, and LGBTQ+ Mental Health.
Another great feature is their ‘discuss’ section. I love this because it asks a question of the day based on the meditation of the day. It’s a mini-reflection that keeps your practice at the forefront of your mind.
Similar to Calm, you get a 7-day free trial and from there you are charged $14.99/mo or $64.99/yr.
Free Honorable Mentions of Daily Meditation Apps
Oak Meditation – Oak meditation is less feature-packed than the above-mentioned. The home screen is a more calming experience, with three categories: Meditate, Breathe, and Sleep. Simple and straightforward. The meditations are mindful, loving-kindness, and unguided. Similar to Ten Percent you have the option to select how long you’d like your meditation practice to be ranging from 10 min. – 30 min. You earn badges based on how many meditation sessions you’ve completed.
This is an excellent app if you don’t want to try any apps with free trials and are just looking for a basic meditative app.
Insight Timer – Insight Timer is loaded with many features that are free! Similar to IG stories they have Insight Timer Stories. Which appear automatically when you listen to content in public mode instead of private. It’s a pretty great feature to discover new content and practices! They have a plethora of teachers! Users can write reviews on the meditation and instructor for everyone to view, and they offer meditation groups if you’d like to feel part of a community.
They offer courses and workshops, however, it is for a fee, their membership plus is billed at $59.99/yr.
A Few Lessons Learned …
Since practicing I’ve always used daily meditation apps to help guide me during my sessions. As previously mentioned, I started meditating to increase self-awareness and have better focus. However, I’ve gained so much more! I’m more compassionate towards others, I listen and am less reactive, I practice self-kindness and self-love constantly.
So many more lessons learned and so much to benefit from! It’s important to keep in mind that everyone’s journey is different. Everyone’s experience will be different. Try all apps or pick which best suits your needs and which you will gain the most out of. Meditation teaches us to focus on the breath, don’t be discouraged when your mind starts to wander – totally normal! Simply, re-focus your attention on the breath.
I hope this post has been helpful to you! Happy meditating journey!
xx Zee xx