The best apps to help you relax and unwind through meditation

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Ah, the world of parenting. It’s both exciting and exhausting; sensational, yet highly stressful. As mums, we all get a little overwhelmed sometimes. It’s natural, and the only way to get ourselves out of this rut is to take a little time for ourselves! Meditation is a particularly great way to regain a positive mindset when we’re down in the dumps.

But how do you get into meditation? You could take a local class or grab a book from a library, but if you’re looking for something more instantaneous, your smartphone or tablet can provide quick access to a wide variety of self-help apps.

If you’re feeling the strain, give one of these a try.

● Calm

Currently boasting a 4.9 rating on the Apple App Store store collated from over 1000 reviews, Calm is certainly one of the top-rated meditation apps on the market. It’s free to download too, providing a selection of guided meditation sessions of varying lengths to suit your needs. You can even take advantage from its range of soothing background sounds to ease the stresses in your everyday life.

Want more? Calm currently offers per-month and per-year subscriptions to provide access to extra meditation sessions. Give it a try before you commit; but if you find Calm useful, yearly access only costs the equivalent of a few quid per-month.

● Smiling Mind

Described on its Google Play page as “a unique web and app-based program developed by psychologists and educators to help bring balance to people’s lives,” Smiling Mind is tailored towards children as well as adults.

It contains a variety of programs designed to help people cope with everyday stress, and pleasantly, is completely free to download. Even your kids (ages 7-18) might be able to benefit from this one.

● Stop, Breathe & Think

Stop, Breathe & Think is another highly-rated app on both Apple’s App Store and Android’s Google Play store. It works by tailoring its 50+ meditation courses to your needs, accounting for your current moods and feelings before you get started.

Fortunately, this is another free app you can take advantage of. There is a paid premium option available though, adding another 45+ meditation tracks to the mix alongside a range of additional benefits. You aren’t required to pay a thing though, making this another fantastic self-help choice for smartphone or tablet owners.

● The Mindfulness App

The Mindfulness App is claimed to be used by “millions of meditators in over 130 countries,” and is certainly one of the best on the market. There’s just one catch – you’ll need to pay if you want to get the most out of it.

The premium subscription is available for a £54.99 yearly commitment, offering “over 25 complete mindfulness courses and more than 180 single meditation sessions.” If you’re willing to fork out the cash, you probably won’t find a better meditation app on the market. That said, free users can still take advantage of its beginner-friendly qualities and excellent guided sessions.

● Insight Timer

Let’s get back to the freebies – Insight Timer claims to be the “most popular free meditation app in the Play Store.” Amazingly, it boasts over 5000 meditation exercises, although you may find that some are better than others.

For free, there’s no reason not to give it a try. Courses can be rated by users, helping to determine the best ones available, while a range of additional features only add to Insight Timer’s appeal. With “2 billion meditation minutes” incorporated into the app, you’ll be spoilt for choice.

You don’t have to stick to these five! You’ll find masses of meditation apps across a range of app stores, so don’t limit yourself! The most important thing is to find what works for you. Experiment, enjoy and most importantly, de-stress!