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  • Writer's pictureRobin Callow, MSW, LSWAIC

Headspace vs. Calm Apps - Gratitude Challenge

This week, I am challenging myself to participate in Headspace’s Happiness meditation pack and Calm’s Gratitude pack. The more gratitude and happiness in one’s life, the better. Right? I admit a fondness for Headspace, having been a user for over a year now and I really enjoy Andi Puddicombe’s technique and voice. I have only recently signed up for Calm, which I enjoy for its terrific graphics, relaxing sound choices, and variety of programs, like bedtime stories and deep breathing programs.

I start with the Calm meditation and then finish with the Headspace app. Calm’s narrator is female and has a perky yet relaxing voice. I can still faintly hear in the background the soothing sounds of the lake which is my favorite nature relaxation track. We start the meditation by breathing deeply and trying to relax into our breathing. And then, the narrator never stops talking. Literally. It’s a mini-lecture on gratitude. Awesome. Informative. But not what I am looking for within my meditation practice. Before the 13 minutes is up, I am staring out the window wondering what to make for dinner.

Next up is Headspace. We start the 15-minute Happiness meditation again by deep breathing and relaxing. He introduces some gratitude visualizations and allows me to meditate into relaxation, consciousness, gratitude, and kindness for the rest of the session. I finish rejuvenated and refreshed.

I want to like Calm more. I appreciate the graphics, the interface, the lovely sounds, and all the other goodies. But I really want to meditate and relax even more. Meditation is a wonderful tool that can help us build our mindfulness practice, which in turn can help with depression and anxiety. That is where Headspace really excels. Out of all the meditation apps out there now with more being produced each day, Headspace is one of the only ones that actually teaches you how to meditate. And then leaves you alone long enough to enjoy it.

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