For stress relief

By Meg Rivera

THESE are stressful and busy times for us all. Schools and universities are piling on the homework, workplaces are starting to tie up the year’s projects, and even home gets busy with preparing for the holidays. Add that to the two disasters we’ve had recently, and we’re looking at a high pressure environment that could just boil over.

We all have our ways of coping. Whether it’s in the form of a chocolate bar or a good ass-kicking run, coping mechanisms have been wired into our systems to help us step back and regroup.

We destress to regain mental equilibrium, but unless you’re Whistler’s mother, simply sitting and staring isn’t going to help. Words like yoga or meditation crop up when people discuss relaxation, but I would rather poke myself with a needle than hold a pose. I get bored, and I find myself anxious to stay occupied without having to think too much. I used to crochet to achieve this, but lugging wool around wasn’t the sexiest thing to look at. I find that to relax properly, I need to be engaged, but in a neutral gear.

This week, we have three apps that help your brain come down to a gentle simmer, and put you back in prime working condition.

Pocket-Pond-iconApp name: Pocket Pond 2

Developer: TriggerWave, LLC

Available on: App Store, Google Play

Easy to use: After the tutorial, yes. Fiddle with it on your own though, and see what you can figure out.

Overall comment: What’s a fish pond app doing here, you ask. There’s a reason why gardens revolve around the koi pond, and that’s because they have a soothing effect. The motion of following the fish with our eyes and not our heads calms us down. You can breed the koi, clean the filter and decorate it. You can also just play with the fish in the water and watch them swim, and that should be enough to calm you down. Four clicks out of five.

Destress-Smash-Fly-iconApp name: Destress Smash Fly Fight Meme Face

Developer: Samurai Spirit

Available on: App Store, Google Play

Easy to use:

Overall comment: For the passive-aggressive among us. The premise is simple: smack the fly and not the rage face. The graphics are not great, but you don’t need HD to take your frustration out on a badly-drawn meme face. Offers minutes of furious tapping, but not much else. Two clicks out of five.

Yoga-Nidra-Lite-iconApp name: Yoga Nidra Lite

Developer: Madhava

Available on: App Store, Google Play

Easy to use: All you do is hit ‘play’ and lie there. Easy peasy.

Overall comment: For the yoga enthusiasts. Yoga Nidra is a form of yoga that focuses on relaxing the mind and body through a guided meditation. The best part is that you should just lie completely still on the floor and listen to the instructions. I suppose you can’t get better than this, in terms of calming down. This takes about ten minutes to complete, so eliminate all distractions for this duration. Three clicks out of five.

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