After writing extensively on the benefits of meditation, I’ve been eager to take a meditation class to learn the practice. But meditating on my own schedule appears to work better for me. Here are three apps that I downloaded for free and that worked well for me as a beginner.
1. Take a Break. You know that point in your workday when you’re so frazzled, you become unproductive? Instead of slogging through, take a seven-minute “work break” to distract yourself from deadline. “Use your imagination to put it away,” says a soothing voice. “You’ll be able to accomplish a lot more later on.”
2. Headspace. Learn mindfulness meditation in 10 minutes a day for 10 days; the app is great for anyone who has never practiced meditation before. (If you want additional days, you’ll have to pay to subscribe.) It “will help you gain a greater sense of focus and clarity” to calm the agitation of the mind, promises founder Andy Puddicombe.
3. Breathe2Relax. This teaches you the proper way to engage in breathing for relaxation. It’s based on the principle of personalized meditation. You select the scenery, background music, and length of the inhale and exhale of your breath in seconds. (I followed instructions to determine what worked best for me — a 5.3-second inhale and 7.3-second exhale — that I was able to alter during the exercise.) D.K.