6 apps to help boost your mental health
WITH Mental Health Week well on its way, awareness around mindfulness and wellbeing is growing.
The increased prevalence of social media has led more people to try to find ways to disconnect from the virtual world but reconnect with their inner self.
Mental health apps are allowing people to do just this.
Bloom, created in August 2019, is a wellness app that provides strategies for reducing stress, anxiety, depression and anger.
Within two days, the app became number one on Apple's App Store.
Melbourne-based creators Molly Jane and Chloe Szepanowski came up with the idea of Bloom after they both started practising methods to have a calmer mind.
"We started incorporating different tools into our everyday routine that helped us de-stress and overcome battles that we were both going through," Ms Jane told the Herald Sun.
Ms Szepanowski and Ms Jane have a personal connection to mental health, with both women living with forms of depression and anxiety.
"We have both found ways that have eased those moments for us. It doesn't have to be something that takes a lot of time. It can be just a few small things a day that helps set you up to be the best version of yourself," Ms Jane said.
Although both women are living with mental health illnesses, they admit that they're not experts in the field.
"We're are not claiming that we have cured [our illnesses] but Bloom has allowed us to be a better version of ourselves," Ms Jane said.
Ms Szepanowski and Ms Jane wanted to ensure they had expert advice featured on the app.
Guided tutorials are led by specialised teachers including holistic health coaches, empowerment coaches and yoga instructors.
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⠀ BLOOM IS LIVE! We are so happy to finally share this with the world. This app is so close to our hearts.⠀ ⠀ Bloom is a place where you can come to learn tools to be the best version of yourself that you can be 🌷⠀ ⠀ Click the link in our bio to download from the App Store. #letsbloom 💜💚
"Bloom is basically a big family. [The teachers] are people we deal with on a day-to-day basis," Ms Jane said.
"Everyone that is on board with Bloom believes in the same message as us".
Bloom also features mandala drawings and colouring-in activities.
"For people that are new to the whole mediation idea, the drawings are an easy way to calm your mind." Ms Szepanowski told the Herald Sun.
"When I first started on my journey, it was hard for me to get into mediation it was a great introduction. I know of other people who have had similar experiences to me so instead of just scrolling on Instagram, the drawings allow you to have a mindful break."
Bloom has new updates coming this year including a detailed section on astrology and the energy of the moon cycles.
OTHER MENTAL HEALTH APPS
Happify is a science-based app that provides activities and games that are proven to overcome negative thoughts.
There are 32 experts behind Happify, including psychologists, doctors, authors and researcher scientists.
All the experts have studied evidence-based interventions in the fields of positive psychology, mindfulness and cognitive behavioural therapy for decades.
Funded by Beyond Blue and the Movember Foundation, Headgear is a free app designed to measure and boost people's mental fitness.
The main feature of the app is the 30 Day Challenge which is a program based around
techniques that are scientifically proven to increase one's mental health.
Each day, users are given a new mental fitness challenge to complete.
This may involve a quiz, short video or an activity that aims to strengthen one's mental health.
Headgear also features daily quotes and a "toolbox" that provides ways to help shift your mood.
Mind Mechanic is a meditation app that has been designed specifically for men.
It was created by Chibs Okereke who is a qualified meditation and mindfulness teacher.
"[The app has] straightforward guided meditations for blokes that really work to help them feel happier, more in control, motivated, healthier, more chilled, less lonely and even sleep better," Okereke said.
It features 360 different immersive environments that can be viewed from your smartphone, tablet or VR goggles.
Smiling Mind is a free wellness app that provides modern meditation for people of all ages.
It was created in 2012 by Melbourne entrepreneurs Jane Martino and James Tutton.
To date, there have been over 4.1 million downloads with a reach of 3.2 million young people.
Smiling Mind offers an abundance of programs that are catered to people of all age groups.
There are adult and youth programs that have been designed to support different age groups manage the pressures and challenges of their everyday life.
Smiling Mind also offers structured classroom and workplace programs for educators that are looking to bring mindfulness into their environment.
Rootd is a specialised app for people that suffer from panic attacks and anxiety.
The app helps people understand where their anxious feelings come from and why they might be happening.
Rootd also explores how the body and mind experience panic attacks together.
There are also tools such as the 'breathe' and 'visualizr'.
These functions help people practice deep breathing and relaxation techniques.
All featured apps can be downloaded from the App Store and Google Play.