A very good friend of mine told me she was having a great experience with Headspace, so a couple days later she was so kind as to send me a free month-long trial. I’ve been testing it out and I think it is perfect for those who have never done meditation and want to try it out privately without going to a class. Headspace would be useful for those who commute on a bus or desire to take work breaks at their desk. Headspace is a meditation application that can run on your computer and phone. In our busy modern life, anything that promotes meditation is a good thing. A lot of our energy and focus is being pulled out of us constantly with our fast-paced, media driven, attention-soliciting society. Meditation is more important than ever. Just think how much more peaceful the world would be if more people did meditation regularly. Paint a picture here: think of people letting go of frustration in the traffic lanes on their commutes, people gathering in the park for qigong, people pausing to think before speaking and acting, people who are emotionally accessible to their friends and families, in their bodies, and not distracted by the media onslaught.
Headspace is, in my and Veronica’s opinion, a great tool for the modern U.S. citizen who is in search of a tool for finding stillness and focus in the midst of what can easily become a hectic lifestyle.The 10 day free trial, which is open to everyone, makes available three levels of foundational guided meditation, which is very digestible and approachable for those who have never meditated before. The first 3 levels teaches us how to bring the mind to a place of rest and stillness for centering and balancing, and also to build inner awareness. The portable program of guided meditations has cute animations, email reminders to help motivate you, and some stats to track your progress. The app says meditation is good for treating decreasing anxiety & depression, blood pressure, heart rate, and stress. Headspace also says that regular practice of meditation improves attention, cholesterol levels, memory, and sleep. There are 5 sections in the series so far:
- Headspace Pro
Each section has includes packs, sort of like sub-sections. . For instance, performance has these packs:
There is also a section of activities called “singles” which are designed to be helpful while you are doing specific actions. Here are a few:
- Fear of flying
Another cool thing I like about Headspace is you can gift this app to someone special in your life that you think could benefit from meditation, but are unsure if they would like going to an expensive class, or are too busy to learn from a book or video. It is an easy noncommittal gesture that is different yet thoughtful. Currently you can gift a one month subscription for $12.99. I chose to gift this to someone close to me who is currently going through a really hard time, for instance, because I felt like he might like to try it out but might not purchase it for himself, but because it’s an app it doesn’t come with the pressure involved with taking a class.
Andy Puddicombe is the founder of Headspace and is the voice who does the guided meditations. He started meditation at the young age of 11 when he went to his first meditation class with his mother. When he was in school he quit college to become a Buddhist monk to deal with his life issues, which was largely attributed to parental divorce and a car crash that took lives when he was growing up. Puddicombe is also the author of The Headspace Guide to Meditation and Mindfulness, and a Clinical Meditation Consultant in the United Kingdom.
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