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We live in a world of constant noise. The voices in our head never shut up. In our modern, always-on lives, snatching pockets of time for ourselves has become an extremely difficult thing to do. There are some apps, though, that are trying to make a difference. We list six of the best free apps out there right now.

Meditation has helped millions of people get away from the hustle and bustle of everyday noise to the deep, quiet, inner recesses of the mind. Modern studies on the practice have suggested that it helps fight insomnia, helps you sleep better, and improves your overall quality of life by making you a calmer, less frenetic person.

While smartphones are often seen as the very antithesis of calmness, there are a few apps that are trying to usher in an age of mindfulness. And you can indulge in these for free!

1. Relax Melodies
Despite the name, Relax Melodies is more than just melodies. It has stunning nature photography that calms you instantly, and the best feature of the app is that you can customise a wide range of sounds and combine them to make your own melody. So go on, add the croak of a frog to the gurgle of the river. Layer the rustle of tree leaves with birdsong, the patter of rain with a gentle clap of thunder. There are also guided meditations here for you to try.

2. Meditation Timer Pro
This one’s appropriately minimalist in both design and mission statement. It doesn’t want to do too much besides guiding you through a successful meditation session. Pick a length of time to meditate, set reminders for start and finish, and you’re ready to begin. It comes with a beautifully simple, subdued tan interface, and contains statistics pages to log your progress. It also has a collection of calming images to set as background.

3. Omvana
With a simple blue interface with attractive icons, Omvana gives you a happy welcome right off the bat. It’s easy to use; just click on the kind of guided meditation you want to choose and get going. The app has a large library of guided meditation from global experts. It also has a feature whereby it records your mood and gives you suggestions for the best kind of meditation at that time. Omvana also has topic-specific meditation suggestions, like health, wealth and sleep.

4. Calm
This app will immerse you in scenes of natural beauty and bathe your mind in relaxing music and nature sounds. They have a tool for beginners who can learn the basics of mindful meditation called the ‘seven days of calm’. There are more advanced guided practices as well for different goals, like creativity and self-confidence. If calmness and sleep are your main goals, you have to try Calm.

5. Insight Timer
One of the most popular meditation apps out there, Insight Timer allows you to set the time you want to meditate for, which sets off a timer and off you go. You can also choose optional starting and ending bells, as well as interval bells at the duration you choose. There is a social aspect to it all; you can see who else among the ‘Insight Timer’ community is meditating right at that moment with you. It also has audio-guided meditations for beginners, and you can of course keep track of your stats as well.

6. Take a Break!
This is simple and fun. You have two options, basically: a 7-minute work break relaxation or a 13-minute meditation. Vast, calming, clear seascapes welcome you to Take a Break, and there is a choice of calming music or nature sounds to accompany you during your meditation. This is wonderful for absolute beginners, but it may be too simple if you’re an experienced meditator. 

Himanshu Yadav

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