Anyway I thought I'd collect together some of the other suggestions and post them here.
People take different approaches to managing their anxiety - there are mindfulness or meditation apps which focus on breathing or thoughts, others like to listen to white noise (it doesn't have to be hiss, it can be a clock ticking or rain) or music, some like to distract themselves with puzzle games like Tetris.
Other than WorkFlowy I've never used any of these and don't know if some of them might be able to cause harm as well as potentially making you feel better. I recommend being a bit skeptical about any health claims made. See also this article by Dawn Foster who found the experience of trying out mindfulness (and later the Headspace app) to be a distinctly unpleasant one, so these apps and techniques really may not suit everyone.
A few tedious* people poohpooed the idea of apps instead recommending getting outside or talking to actual people and that's fine for many, but not all.My workplace has somebody coming in to do a session on Inspirational Breathing. Oh yes. https://t.co/Kt7JdDrPdo— David Hills (@WanderinTeacake) October 7, 2016
Apps mentioned more than twice
Headspace (Twitter) "Headspace is meditation made simple. Learn with our app or online, when you want, wherever you are, in just 10 minutes a day" - mentioned 35 times
Buddhify (Twitter) "Remarkably good mindfulness-meditation app for iOS & Android. Made by
Pacifica (Twitter) - "Live happier. Daily tools for stress & anxiety alongside a supportive community. Available on iOS & Android" mentioned 4 times
Andrew Johnson (Twitter) "Meditation, Mindfulness, Relaxation and Stress Management Apps/MP3s. 11m downloads to date. Search for Andrew Johnson in your App Store." - mentioned 3 times
Calm (Twitter) "Join the Calm revolution and enjoy the amazing benefits of meditation. Our app and book will show you how: http://www.calm.com" - mentioned twice
Flowy (Twitter of its parent company) - a breathing focus app for people who experience panic attacks "Flowy: how a mobile game will combat panic attacks with kittens and robots" (Wired article) - mentioned twice
Stop, Breathe and Think (website) - meditation / breathing focus app - mentioned twice
SAM (website) - "SAM is an application to help you understand and manage anxiety.The app has been developed in collaboration with a research team from UWE, Bristol" - mentioned twice
Yoga Nidra (iTunes site) - yoga app - mentioned twice, yoga overall was also mentioned several times. There are also free 'yoga nidra' resources online, and other similar apps.
Other suggestions mentioned once
- 7-11 breathing technique (variations to be found in Google search results)
- Apps that lock you out of social media for a pre-set time
- Booster Buddy (Google Play) - aimed at teens and young adults
- Breathe (Apple Watch) - watch an enlarging and shrinking animation and breathe in time
- Calm Down Now (iTunes) - claims to stop panic and anxiety attacks
- Listening to music (as in actual music, not an app)
- MoodKit (website) - mood improvement tools
- Moodnotes (iTunes) - a thought journal / mood diary
- MoodPanda (website) - a happiness tracking app
- Noisli (website) - a background noise app
- OMG I can meditate (website) - mentioned once but meditation mentioned 8 times overall
- Plants vs Zombies 2 (website) - recommended by someone who enjoyed this "defeat the predators" game and its theme tune
- QuilityApp (website) - mindfulness app aimed at parents
- RainyMood (website) - relax with the sound of rain, thunder optional
- Relax and Breathe (10 mins of watching the shape expand and contract, plinky music)
- RespiRelax (French, iTunes) "RespiRelax vous permet de retrouver calme et détente en quelques minutes seulement et d’atteindre un état dit de 'cohérence cardiaque'" and, thanks to Google Translate that says "RespiRelax allows you to find peace and relaxation within minutes and to reach a state called 'cardiac coherence'" - last bit sounds like a dodgy health claim to me, as if it's claiming to interfere with one's heart rhythms!
- Smiling Mind (website) - mindfulness meditation
- Solitaire (the game)
- Virtual Hope Box (iTunes site) - this app has also undergone a trial (data not yet published) about whether it can reduce self-harm among military personnel (Health.mil news website, ClinicalTrials.gov website)
- Wildfulness (website) - "unwind in nature and calm your mind"
- WorkFlowy (website) - not an anxiety app, but a list / productivity app. It lets you type in new list items and reorder them (you can nest them as well). You can also use bold, italic and hashtags for easy searching later, and add a smaller-font note to any list item. I use it constantly both on desktop and phone and it's a brilliant way to manage multiple to do lists (I also use it at home for packing etc).
- 8 apps you can use to cope with stress, anxiety and other mental health issues (JOE.ie website)
- Podcasts from the Mental Health Foundation
- Anxiety UK - national charity for people with anxiety
How I made this post
To capture this information I searched on Twitter for to:caitlinmoran, went through the tweets and made a list of the apps mentioned, then used Ctrl+F to search on the page for each instance of the app's name, using the 'highlight all' facility. That let me estimate how often that word appeared on the page. You need to be a bit careful though as if you're searching for one of the apps, 'SAM', you'll also include anyone with that name.
*"seriously, can you just not", as they say. Whenever anyone asks a question about X on Twitter they invariably have to put up with helpful people answering that perhaps Y might be a better solution. I don't condone violence in general but consider yourselves the first against the wall when the revolution comes if this is how you choose to answer questions on the internet (unless there's a really good reason to do so).
Why yes, I did find preparing this blog post rather relaxing :)