“I simply don’t have time.” How often do you make that statement? If you’re like us, then pretty often, so if it was suggested that you take a few moments to meditate each day, you’d probably derisively laugh it off as an impossibility. Simple Habit is a new app that understands the problem, but knows the benefits of meditation, therefore makes it easy to squeeze it into your daily routine.
Simple Habit contains fast, five-minute mindfulness meditation plans, which can be listened to over headphones at any time, anywhere. The guided sessions are run by experienced meditation teachers, and although five minutes may sound like a short time for meditation — we often consider such a practice to involve siting cross-legged on the floor for hours — with mindfulness, the benefits come after short sessions.
What are they? The app promises better sleep, more focus, improved memory, and crucially, less stress. It’s that final benefit that led Yunha Kim, CEO of Simple Habit, to create the app in the first place. She discovered meditation when stress was at its highest while running her previous startup, Locket, saying learning to meditate “changed the way I dealt with stress.” Now, she wants others with busy, nonstop lives to reap the same rewards. Apparently, just one Simple Habit session can help focus attention, but obviously, to really get the best from the sessions, it requires some dedication. Simple Habit says five minutes a day for two to four weeks will really supercharge the initial effect.
Don’t worry, it’s not all hippy hokum either. There are several studies that show mindfulness mediation can not only reduce stress and anxiety levels, but also to train the brain to get better at multi-tasking, and to free it creatively. Apple has recently drawn attention to mindfulness meditation with the addition of the Breathe feature inside WatchOS 3, which will be released later this year. The Apple Watch app presents breathing exercises, designed to help improve focus and reduce stress.
Created with the help of a Harvard psychologist and several mediation teachers, Simple Habit has sessions designed for everyone from entrepreneurs to students, and others that will more generally prepare the mind for a task, or particular situation. Kim told Digital Trends that she has had good feedback from the beta tests, including one report from a surgeon, “using the app to focus better before performing surgery.”
In addition to the meditations, the app features podcasts, a calendar to track progress, and reminders to get meditating. It’s available today for iOS and comes with a week’s free trial. If you like it, it’ll cost $4 per week, $15 per month, or $120 per year afterwards to continue using it.