The last couple of weeks have been quite stressful. I've been travelling a lot, dealing with changes to my medication which come with some frustrating side effects and winding up one job before starting another (on Monday!). Plus we've got a few things going on in the background which have been challenging to deal with. It's the type of situation that could, relatively easily, implode. Even if you're not already prone to a bit of angst. Which is exactly why I've been taking some extra steps to look after myself.
My general approach to staying well is to eat well, sleep enough, not drink too much and move lots. Easy. When life is running smoothly. Not so easy when it's up in the air. So recently I've been thinking about what else I could do. It needed to be effective and require little to no thought or effort on my part - in the past attempts to relax have had quite the opposite effect. Something I could do on the move and that wouldn't take much time.
Meditation is something I've dabbled in. I loved the guided meditation Bex recently led us through while on a yoga retreat, and I've toyed with various apps and DIY efforts in the past. But, being totally honest, it's too time consuming, and if something 'wellness' needs a lot of time then I'm less likely to do it and more likely to get stressed about not doing it. Which probably isn't the point. So, it's always been pushed to the 'probably not right now' pile when life gets busy. But maybe I've been missing out? Maybe there's another way?
When the guys at Buddhify got in touch I was intrigued. They promised medication on-the-go that I could do wherever I was or whatever I was doing. So I could fit it in to life as and when I needed. No quite spaces and candles needed. The app is categorised by what you're doing or how you're feeling, which I found really handy. Over the last few weeks I've been struggling with concentration and focus, but there's a meditation for that, and in just a few minutes I found I had a much clearer head and could get on with what needed to be done. And I could do it at my desk! There are such a huge range of mediations too, you're bound to find one for whatever you need, and overtime you can edit the apps nifty wheel to what woks for you.
One of my favourite features on the app is that you can Give a mediation to someone in your life who could really do with it. This is just a lovely idea, and a really tangible way to show support without resorting to platitudes, which can be frustrating. I'll defiantly be keeping this one in my back pocket for the next time a friend is having a tricky moment.
Now an app isn't ever going to be the answer to everything. But as a way of dealing with a brief period when life is really full on I reckon it could be really handy. A quick meditation can be the momentary escape that you need to regroup and find the resilience to do all the other things that help you get through tricky times.
Have you tried any meditation apps? What do you think?
*images: Anna Rachel Photography
**Buddhify kindly gifted me their app, but all opinions are my own.