Meditation Is Good For You: OMG. I Can Meditate! App

This is my second post in a series about meditation and tools that can help you (here is the first). Several months ago, I told a friend about how I was meditating almost daily and how much I loved it, but that I needed something more, like an app that let you choose what kind of meditation you need. For example, if you’re PMS-ing and you need a coping app, or you need to steel yourself for a difficult meeting happening today, or you want to be more mindful with your children. “There should be an app for that,” I said.

Well. There is one, and it came out of the universe for me to try.

omg_meditate_girl_2

OMG. I Can Meditate! is a guided meditation program available by subscription. There is a beginner level, in which meditation expert Lynn Goldberg coaches you through learning how to meditate.

I started using this app to meditate in the morning about a month ago. I have confidence in the fact that there is a distinct guided meditation for every day beginning with day one week one. I can’t be consistent and do it every single day, so I’m still only on week three, day 6. However, I have used the app enough times that Lynn’s voice has become familiar and comforting. In each segment her soothing voice guides you through relaxation techniques and using your “attention muscle” to focus on quieting your mind.

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I began this project with the intention of keeping a daily meditation journal. I got as far as day one and then lost my focus. I decided to be kind to myself and just use the app as it fit into my life. That proved to be successful not only with reviewing the app but also with keeping up with the daily meditations themselves. If I miss a day, I don’t kick myself, I just pick it up again the next day. Now every morning when I wake up and come downstairs, pour myself a cup of coffee, get settled on the couch looking out over my beautiful backyard, and start my meditation before everybody wakes up. It’s quiet time just for me and I love it. I suppose I could do this without an app, using some music a candle etc., but having the guided meditation at my disposal makes me do it. It’s easy, it takes the thinking out of the whole process, and makes it more likely that I will simply just do it.

The app has a very long list of features, and weeks and weeks of recorded guided meditations. There are special meditations for kids, for stress, for helping you fall asleep, and more. So far I’ve only used the daily meditations.

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Because it is a new product, it is susceptible to design flaws. I found the app clumsy to get started with, and every now and then the next meditation in the plan will take a very long time to download. And at six in the morning when I’m ready to do my meditation, and it’s not downloaded, my attention will wander and I will check email or Facebook. The opposite of meditation. The app also holds some intrinsic wisdom about you and your readiness for certain meditations. For example I wanted to try one of the relationship meditations, but it told me I wasn’t far along enough in the process to use that one. However, the developers seem to be working overtime – tech support was quick to address my concerns, and since I started using it the app has been updated at least once.

You can try the app for free, but if you want to continue after the first meditation the cost is $9.95 a month, or $5.00 a month if you pay for a whole year in advance. While there are plenty of free meditation apps out there, for that price you get some good value in Lynn’s recordings. I would recommend this for somebody who needs help learning how to meditate. I still don’t even know how to meditate. And I’ve been trying for a very long time.

omg meditate appOMG. I Can Meditate!

I am giving away 10 (TEN!) codes for 3-month trial memberships here at Agoura Hills Mom. Just leave a comment here to enter to win (one comment entry per person please)! Extra entry if you follow Agoura Hills Mom on Facebook or Instagram (one extra entry for each). Winner(s) will be chosen at random from entries received before 11:59 on Friday, May 22, 2015.

See Click Fix For That Annoying Thing

 

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A few weeks ago our family was at Chumash Park for flag football. I walked over to the play structure and in the distance I saw my younger boy playing with what looked like a big skateboard. I wondered where he got a skateboard. And then as I got closer I realized two things:

1. My eyesight, despite being LASIK-ed to perfection, is already getting worse because I’m getting old
2. My son was playing with a skateboard-sized chunk of metal bench.

Upon closer inspection, I realized that yes indeed, it was a giant chunk of the metal bench from the picnic table/bench combo that is standard to Agoura Hills parks. The kids were playing with these enormous tetanus risks. I told my son to put it down, and then resolved to Tell Somebody.

If you have children who play sports, chances are you have a lot of Sideline Time. You know, when you are just there, at the football/soccer/baseball field, or the basketball/tennis court, or the stands near the pool. Just there, not doing anything, maybe watching the game, maybe chatting with the other parents. I have packed my Sideline Bag with work, books, snacks, etc. to kill the time. On this day, I used some of that time to report the offending broken bench.

And I found this amazing thing: See Click Fix! I had heard that Agoura Hills introduced an app that you could use to report things that go wrong, and a little bit of Googling led me right to it!

seeclickfixBoop-beep-boop: I reported the broken bench. Someone responded right away “We’re looking into it.” Then a week later, boom, bench was gone. I created a free account and signed up to get emails from SCF, and now I get little messages every few days. Someone reports a broken streetlight BAM! Fixed. Someone sees a pile of trash illegally dumped on the side of the road BOOM! Hauled away.

It’s …like a miracle, really. I encourage you to check it out. Keep it classy, Agoura. Keep it classy.

See, Click, Fix

Agoura Hills, everybody!

Wikets Is the App With the Best Tagline

Wiket Awesome!

That is the default text that is entered when you recommend a product, place, app, or anything else on Wikets, the app for iPhone and iPad that allows you to tell your friends what you like.  You can also search for things and places that your friends like.  And you all get to share the rewards.

For example, I recommended Pandora on Wikets, because I simply love it.  It’s an online streaming “radio” that plays music based on songs and artists that you enter.  And it’s free!  If one of the people who follows me on Wikets – one of my friends – is browsing Wikets looking for a cool music app, she might see my rec for Pandora and decide to use it.  Her life will be changed forever…for example, it is because of Pandora that I found out I like Ke$ha.

For the irony, of course.

Now Wikets has added the ability for you to attach a YouTube video to any of your recommendations (or “recs” as the Wikets folk abbreviate them).  I recommended Storitz, the public storage facility, and attached this video that I shot for them last year.

Now people can view this kind of video preview of something that they are interested in buying or downloading, which gives them an even better idea about what they’re getting into. When you share recs, or re-rec, or buy things that someone rec’ed, you earn points toward an Amazon.com gift card. So everybody wins!

Be careful. It’s addictive, kind of like anything else that is Wiket Awesome that you can use on an iPhone.  If you do start using Wikets, enter the promo code KTPRINCE to get 200 points just for signing up.

I was compensated by Wikets for the time I put into testing and writing about the app.