Written by Jiovann Carrasco, LPC-S
A client recently told me about this new app she downloaded that she wanted to use to help her organize her therapy work. I thought it was such a cool way to supplement the work she was doing in therapy. It's called Therapy Buddy and it has a couple of features that I really like. First, you can make a list of things you want to talk about in your next session so you're prepared. I have a lot of clients who actually bring in lists whether it's in a journal they're keeping, or in the notepad app on their smart phone. Therapy Buddy also has a place for you to list "helpful takeaways" or things to remember about the session you just had. There is also a place for you to log your homework assignments in a task list. And you can also enter your appointments and set reminder alerts.
I started thinking that if I were going to create an app that would be useful to my clients, I would definitely want to include a gratitude journal. So I started looking around in the app store and stumbled across this Gratitude Journal that I thought would also be a nice addition to having a suite of therapy supportive apps. We often ask our clients to keep a gratitude journal, like, in an actual journal, made of paper. Well, if that seems like painting on a cave wall, you might check out this app. This one isn't free, it's $1.99. An actual journal is going to set you back $10-15 and you're going to run out of pages at some point. So $2 is a steal! List 5 good things everyday for three weeks to create a new habit. They really emphasize making gratitude journaling into a habit and so they make it really easy with reminders and social media functions to share your happiness with the world.
There's a lot of meditation apps out there folks, so I'm just going to stick to one in this post. Headspace is set up to teach you how to meditate, it's not just a playlist of guided meditations. They do this with cool animated videos that express conceptually what is happening when you meditate. I like that a lot. You get your first 10 meditations for free and then they'll ask you to upgrade to be able to download more. But the first 10 are so good, you might not necessarily need more.
The ACT Companion (the Happiness Trap App) makes better sense if you're doing ACT Therapy, which is what we do at the Austin Mindfulness Center, predominantly. This one has meditation audio and various exercises and activities including checklists, journal entries, goal setting and a number of other ACT related assignments . This app has a fancy tool called the ACT-o-Meter, which helps assess your psychological flexibility score as you progress through the assignments. Obviously, not meant to take the place of ACT therapy, but could really be a useful supplement to utilize between sessions.
I'd love to hear about any other apps you may have found to be supplemental to your therapy work. Leave any suggestions in the comments below!
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Here you will find articles contributed by members of our team. We hope to provide helpful information here to inspire mindful living and general wellness. The information provided here is not a substitue for professional mental health advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you need to speak to a professional regarding your mental health, please make an appointment.