Looking To Shed Some Stress? There’s an App For That

That device vibrating in your pocket or purse can be an incredible source of stress, but it can also be a great tool for alleviating stress in your life. These stress-reducing apps monitor and track your stress levels, provide short meditations for quick relief and put you on track to leading a calm and centered life.

Breathe2Relax

Developed by T2, part of the U.S. Department of Defense’s Military Health System, Breathe2Relax provides a tutorial to diaphragmatic (belly) breathing and guided breathing exercises. Deep, belly breathing slows the stress response by providing the body with a rich supply of oxygen. It replaces shallow chest breathing brought on by the stress response and returns the body to a calm state. The controlled breathing exercises help stabilize moods, manage anxiety and control anger. The app is a free download available for iOS and Android devices.

Mindfulness Coach

Mindfulness meditation focuses attention on the present, steering the mind away from distressing thoughts. The Mindfulness Coach, developed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, provides detailed guidance, with both voice and captions, through nine forms of mindfulness meditation. The app includes a log for recording sessions and educational material about the benefits of mindfulness. The free download is available for iOS devises. An Android version is in development.

Stress Check

This stress management tool allows users to track their stress levels and identify the causes of stress in their lives. The app provides useful definitions and recommendations for dealing with stress. The free download is available for iOS devices.

Relax – Stress and Anxiety Relief

This simple app can lower your stress level within a few minutes. With soothing music and animations, users are guided through a progressive course of breathing exercises. The cost is $2.99. Available for iOS, Android, Nook and Windows Phone.

Cleveland Clinic Stress Free Now

This app gets its medical credentials from the prestigious Cleveland Clinic. Users can train their bodies to relax using the seven meditations: Mindful Meditations – Day, Mindful Meditations – Night, Body Scan, Guided Imagery, Mindfulness of Being, Loving Kindness Meditations and Mountain Meditations. The free download is available for iOS devices.

At Ease

Designed for relieving anxiety and worry, At Ease provides a balanced set of relaxation tools including breathing exercises and music. Its journaling capability allows users to increase awareness of their own stressors, an important step in managing anxiety and worry. Available for iOS and Android devices for $2.99.

Relax & Rest Guided Meditations

The meditations included in this app help ease the transition from stress to calm. They are ideal for unwinding after a harried day at work or as a way to relax before turning in at night. The app has three meditations in varying lengths, a five-minute breathing exercise for quick stress-relief, a 13-minute deep rest meditation and a 24-minute whole body meditation. Relax & Rest is available for iOs and Android devices. Cost is $1.99.

Self-help for Anxiety Management (SAM)

Developed by the University of the West of England, this app helps users monitor their level of anxiety. The 25 self-help sessions include physical and mental relaxation exercises. A closed social network allows users to communicate with other SAM users. The free download is available for iOS and Android devices.

GPS for the Soul

Created by Huffington Post, GPS for the Soul measures your heart and breathing rate via your smartphones camera lens. With these measurements, the app determines your level of stress and recommends meditation guides. The guides offer music, poetry, breathing exercises and pictures of your loved ones to help you de-stress and restore balance. The free download is available for iOS devices.

Stress Free with Deepak Chopra

Chopra’s six-week stress-reducing program had been adopted for use with iOS devices. Features include interactive exercises, guided meditations, music therapy, questionnaires, personalized nutrition advice and yoga. The download is $0.99.