A review of the Ananda meditation app by The Chopra Center as a tool to help with the challenges of transition on my journey to a nomadic life.
Mindfulness is “a mental state achieved by focusing one’s awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting one’s feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations, used as a therapeutic technique.”
Sometimes, being mindful during this transition to nomadic living is challenging. It’s easy to get caught up in the worries of what’s to come. So many unknowns, what will the future hold? While Mila and I are blessed to stay at my parents during this transition, I regularly find myself projecting worries on the future and getting caught up in regrets of the past. In these moments, sometimes, when I’m unable to meditate, the easiest thing to do is just take a slow, deep, breath; and, remind myself of what I’m grateful for.
I am grateful for the opportunity to stay here at my parents house. It’s providing me a temporary respite from some of the financial burdens. And, it’s given me time to figure out how to move forward as a digital nomad with a dog, establishing this blog, sustaining my web design business, and exploring other passions and endeavors.
While I share our collective angst over the current political climate in our country, I am consciously trying not to give the negativity much of my energy. Instead, attempting to focus my thoughts on the positive. Some of the things that bring me joy including: quality time spent with my family, trips to the dog park with Mila, occasional travel around California, and focusing on my current work.
Meditation has become an integral part of my life. Whenever I’m feeling down, anxious about the future, or depressed about the past; meditation is the best way I’ve learned to ground myself in the present moment. I began meditation last year with Deepak and Oprah’s 21-day Meditation Challenge and recently discovered the Ananda meditation app by The Chopra Center. I’ve found it extremely useful because it’s always accessible – wherever I can get online.
The Ananda Meditation App by The Chopra Center
While there is a subscription to access content, the app includes thousands of unique combinations of music to choose from and lets you pair them with any of the meditations by Deepak Chopra and other experts from The Chopra Center.
Lately, my preferred time for meditation is bedtime. I’m not particularly comfortable sitting in a meditation pose for any lengthy period and have found myself far more comfortable laying down. As well, bed time is my opportunity for quiet time to meditate.
Once I’ve made myself comfortable, I put on headphones, open up the app on my iPhone, and select my meditation for the evening. The app allows me to set the length of my experience and adjust the audio balance between the ambient music and each meditation.
A Familiar Meditation Experience
If you’re familiar with the 21-Day Meditation Experience, you’ll be familiar with the Ananda apps experience. Excluding Oprah’s introduction, each meditation follows a very similar format to Deepak’s other meditations.
The app also lets you create playlists of your favorite meditation topics. While I find the user experience of the player itself a bit challenging, I’m getting the hang of it. Unfortunately, though each meditation is labeled, the music is not. There are a few music selections I’ve come to enjoy and wish I could find them more easily. Recent updates to the app have improved the overall experience.
Regardless of the length of the experience you choose, they’ve fixed the app so that it correctly plays a bell sound at the beginning and end of the meditation. Also, because of another recent update, the volume at the end of each mediation now fades to silence instead of abruptly ending. I found the abrupt stop at the end to be a bit jarring. Fortunately, this is now fixed.
Finally, because the app is always with you on your smartphone, if possible, you can take your meditation with you wherever you go. The app is available as a free download, and you can try it with a 14-day free trial. Then, continue with unlimited access to the full library of meditations and music to mix and match for $8.99/month.
You can download the Ananda meditation app by The Chopra Center for iPhone or Android and learn more about the app on the official website.