The conversation around mental health and wellness has become a vital part of our daily lives and conversations, especially during times like these where everyone has experienced the effects of COVID-19. Though the discussion of mental health is becoming more prevalent, there still remains a stigma and hesitance around seeking professional help, largely due to the perception and cost of such services.
According to a Singapore Mental Health Study, one in seven Singaporeans experiences a mental illness in their lifetime, and more than 75 per cent of them do not seek any professional help.
With numerous organisations and initiatives being introduced in recent years that focus on mental health and well-being, apps that centre around feeling good about yourself have also come into play. Unlike professional services that target mental illnesses, these apps aid users in prioritising their mental well-being.
As such, we’ve compiled a list of apps (three of which are founded by Singaporeans, that aid you in finding and understanding your mental wellness), along with music playlists that you should definitely add to your library for some feel-good vibes.
Struggling to talk about your feelings to another person? Try Wysa instead. The user-friendly app blends professional human support with an AI chatbot that leverages on evidence-based cognitive-behavioural techniques (CBT) to help you feel heard. Anonymous and available 24/7, the chat function is based on techniques published in peer-reviewed clinical research.
The app also offers CBT exercises as well as meditation, yoga, and guided journaling activities. There is both a free and a paid premium version of the app, as well as an option for mental health coaching where you can schedule live 30-minute texting sessions.
Compatible with iOS and Android
While Remente isn’t a specific app for anxiety or depression, it’s a helpful resource that allows its users to lead a more positive life overall. The creators behind the Remente app believe that “small actions everyday create life changing behaviours”, which is why the app offers self-improvement tools such as science-backed interactive guides and daily mental wellbeing activities that will allow you to create healthy habits.
The app also has a mental health tracker and a mood journal that helps you reflect and visualise your emotions with colourful icons. There’s also a life assessment tool that helps you think about the bigger picture, complete with tips on how to succeed to achieve personal growth and a healthier lifestyle.
Compatible with iOS and Android
This free app not only features over 130,000 free guided meditations by certified life coaches and celebrities like Gisele Bundchen and Russell Brand, it also gives users access to self-help and mindfulness courses, ambient music, free yoga classes, and interactive events with experts on psychology and well-being. While most of the content is free, you may have to pay a registration fee for some workshops, which start from US$20 (S$27).
Compatible with iOS and Android
Created by Theodoric Chew, Intellect was created based on his personal experience with anxiety and the difficulties of coping with it due to the lack of tangible steps. Intellect encourages you to work on your traits, habits and behaviours, helping you to understand yourself and make positive changes to your mindset. The app also features 4- to 6-week programmes to overcome personal struggles like procrastination, low self-esteem and anxiety.
Compatible with iOS
Some days, you might want a trip down memory lane, and with Journey, you can do just that. Like a digital diary, Journey allows you to take a step back and see how certain experiences have impacted you with over 50 guided journal programmes. It also lets you post pictures which you can look back on like a blog or even on a map so you can revisit where you made those wonderful memories. They even have a fitness tracker and mood chart to help you keep track of your physical and mental wellness.
If you’re into a more auditory experience, Journey also has a voice recording function that lets you express yourself wholly. It’s like your very own podcast!
Compatible with iOS, iPadOS, macOS and Android
Everyone experiences various levels of stress, right? With MindFi, you’ll learn to cultivate sustainable habits whilst improving and keeping track of your mental wellness. Founded by Singaporean Bjorn Lee, the science-based mental wellness app stemmed from his journey with meditation which he began, to manage high-stress experiences from work.
With hundreds of meditations available depending on your mood or time of day, MindFi can bring a bit of calm and wellness into each day. Animated breathing exercises, guided meditations, curated videos by coaches and experts from all over the world sharing their best tips and tricks – there’s bound to be a course for you. Be it to improve your mental focus or just relax (which we all need), this is your call to be mindful and live in the moment.
Compatible with iOS
A first-of-its-kind collaboration between Apple and the Health Promotion Board (HPB), LumiHealth is a personalised programme app created by physicians and public health experts in 2020. Think of this app as that super healthy friend in your life — reminding you to focus on your physical activity, mental wellbeing, sleep, nutrition, preventive screening and vaccinations, plus regular updates on managing the effects of Covid-19. You will earn LumiPoints with each activity challenge you complete, and coins for every milestone that you can accumulate, in exchange for HPB eVouchers.
Made to help Singaporeans focus on bettering their overall health, LumiHealth has introduced new programmes that aid in weight management, and improved on the fitness features for Apple Watch users this year. With the new Healthy Weight Habits programme, users will be able to choose a personalised combination of nutrition and activity challenges. The 30-day programme also offers curated activity challenges that can be tracked on Apple Watch, with the option to level up.
Compatible with iOS and on Apple Watch
We all feel overwhelmed at times. Like its name suggests, this app features various breathing exercises that help you take control of your breathing and in turn, relieve tension throughout your body. With Breathe In’s guided meditations by mindfulness and wellness expert, Karen Heshusius, you’ll learn how to reduce stress, anxiety, stress and sleep better. Your journey to a more mindful life starts here.
Compatible with iOS, iPadOS, macOS
Did you know that when you engage in physical activity, your body releases endorphins, also known as the feel-good hormones? With that in mind, the founders of Wakeout! experimented with just about any activity they could find in their home to come up with over 1,800 unique ways to move for over 35 different situations.
Say you just grabbed your morning coffee and headed over to your desk. This is the perfect opportunity to try out their “Coffee Inhales” exercise to help you savour that daily ritual. Oh, and if you’ve been suffering some back pain from sitting all those hours, their “Relief” section is designed to aid with back, shoulder and neck pain as well as reduce eye strain.
Compatible with iOS, iPadOS, macOS and watchOS
You might be familiar with the Apple Watch tracking your physical health, but what about your mental wellness? In watchOS 8, the ‘Breathe’ app has been updated to the ‘Mindfulness’ app, featuring an enhanced breathing experience and a new session type, Reflect.
With the ease of an Apple Watch, you can have a mindful intention to focus on for as little as one minute that can be done anywhere, anytime. For example, you may see something like “Recall a time recently when you felt a sense of calm. Bring that feeling into this moment.” The refreshed app also offers tips on how you can get more from each session, and features beautiful new animations so you can unwind and unload your mind, simply using your Apple Watch.
Imagine this: You’re high up in the mountains, away from the noise of modern-day life, and you feel a sense of clarity and peace. That feeling is encapsulated in these calming tracks with gentle ambient music, acoustic Tibetan prayer bowls, and the occasional sounds of ocean waves and rainfall. This playlist is constantly updated, so give it a go if you want a soothing soundtrack whilst doing your tasks.
Designed to provide some calm in all the chaos of life, this playlist melds mellow jazz tunes, contemporary classical and instrumental music to provide some relief from the hustle and bustle of modern life. Great for listening to after a tiring day of work.
Zane Lowe, a radio DJ and record producer, handpicked this eclectic collection of songs to help you find a sense of peace. “All these songs to me are searching for some calm and trying to take a proactive step towards improving your environment and trying to create some balance in your life. You can’t control everything in your life, but the music that you choose can alter your mood,” he says.
Including sounds from Radiohead to Moses Sumney to James Blake to SZA, these tracks were selected because of the message in each of them: “Please don’t live in fear. Everything’s not lost. Be here now. Be present. Even when you’re at your most out of control—which I can feel on any given day, where things just don’t feel like they’re connecting in a way that I would like them to—there is music that can begin to stitch those things together.” These tracks are sure to help you have a good day ahead.