What we’ve learned during these weeks spent sheltering at home is that tapping into new growth opportunities and expanding our horizons by seeking new perspective has really helped us to better manage the stress we’ve been feeling.
Here’s Shamrock’s collective list of what we’re using right now to keep us steady…
Get in your head. If you’re looking for ways to feel a bit more grounded or relaxed, just ask Oprah. Below are her top three meditation apps (source: Oprahmag.com).
- Calm. Just as the name of this meditation app states, Calm is a portal to peace of mind. Once you open the app (it’s been downloaded more than 50 million times), you’re invited to complete the Daily Calm or locate a meditation more specific to soothing what you have going on: anxiety, stress, a desire to break bad habits, etc.
- Headspace. Self-defined as “the gym membership for your mind.” Beyond practicing silencing your rapid thoughts while sitting with your legs crossed, the Headspace app offers sleep music and soundscapes to help you get sleep.
- Aura. For those always on the go—and who need an uber-quick anti-anxiety fix before a flight, presentation, exam, etc. Its collection of three-minute sessions and 30-second anxiety busters are designed to save you from intense situations.
For the full list of Oprah’s 11 top app picks (with links): https://www.oprahmag.com/life/health/g29861798/best-meditation-apps/
Invest in yourself… spend 13 minutes today learning how to change your brain and change your life. Watch Dr. Shauna Shapiro’s TED talk: The Power of Mindfulness: What You Practice Grows Stronger. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IeblJdB2-Vo
Practice gratitude. Research shows that focusing on and appreciating what we have is one way to increase our happiness. Scientists found that a one-time act of thoughtful gratitude produced an immediate 10% increase in happiness and 35% reduction in depressive symptoms. (Source: American Psychological Association) Gratitude can even strengthen your immune system. Read more about its many benefits (and bookmark this website): https://www.happify.com/hd/5-scientific-facts-that-prove-gratitude-is-good-for-you/
Slow down. In today’s on-demand world, it’s not often that we take the time to slow down and simply be still. This TED talk might just change your thinking and your routine: The art of stillness by Pico Iyer. https://www.ted.com/talks/pico_iyer_the_art_of_stillness?referrer=playlist-talks_to_help_practice_patienc
Move your body. We all know that exercise offers a host of health benefits (better sleep, healthier body weight). It’s also a stress-buster: Physical activity helps bump up the production of your brain’s feel-good neurotransmitters called endorphins. As little as five minutes of aerobic exercise can begin to stimulate anti-anxiety effects. (source: adaa.org) Our favorite FREE apps to help keep you moving:
- Map My Fitness by Under Armour. https://www.mapmyfitness.com/app
Nearly identical to Map My Run, this app allows you to track a variety of activity types including cardio, gym workouts, dog walking, hiking, sports, total body, yoga, etc. Once you’ve selected the activity type, click “Start workout” to track your duration, distance, calories and more.
- FitOn. https://fitonapp.com/
Access this on your phone or even your smart TV. After creating an account, you’ll enter the number of workouts you’d like to complete each week and how much time you’d like to spend on those workouts. Along with a few additional questions, the app creates a personalized schedule of classes for you. Browse available free workouts by target area, length or intensity to begin immediately or schedule for a future time and date.
- Daily Workouts Fitness Trainer. (Apple only) https://apps.apple.com/us/app/daily-workouts-fitness-trainer/id469068059
Super simple, straightforward: The app allows you to stream available workout videos or choose an area of focus and time span for in-app workouts. Choose from abs, arms, butt, cardio, legs and full body. Workouts range from 10 to 30 minutes.
That’s a wrap on what our team at Shamrock is using to help manage the everyday during these unusual times. Chime in on our Facebook page to add to the list. We’d love to hear from you.