Narrated by a guide with the most delightful accent, Headspace provides step-by-step meditation techniques in 10 minute segments to easily fit into your busy day. Meditation helps alleviate stress and prompts you to be more present and reflective. The App allows users to choose segment types that align with their current lifestyle goals and effectively help support you in specific areas of interest. Conveniently, once downloaded, its can be used without internet connection, which makes it ideal for those on the go!
- Stash Invest
This innovative App helps the average joe (or jane) learn to invest money in areas of interest such as sustainability, green businesses, technology and innovation to name a few. Stash Invest advises users on their investment choices based on questions asked at sign up. You can start with just a $5 investment and increase from there. Investments are Exchange Traded Funds (ETF) chosen because of their small fees, low risk and historically good performance. This user friendly app takes the intimidation factor out of investing for the first time, and makes it fun!
- Cartwheel by Target
Target has taken couponing to a whole new level with Cartwheel. Weekly updates notify you of exclusive discounts on your favorite products, unavailable to customers who don’t have the App! Discounts are easily redeemed at the register by simply scanning the barcode on your smartphone. Cartwheel tracks how much money you have saved, and gives you extra incentives for using your TargetRED card in conjunction with Cartwheel. It’s a win-win and a save-save!
There are plenty of meal tracking Apps out there, but MyFitnessPal has stood the test of time. Since its launch in 2005, this App has gotten rave reviews and won several accolades. Recently acquired by the Under Armour brand, you can now sync it with other programs that track your movement and activity to better evaluate your daily nutrition needs and fitness level. The App offers users access to millions of meal choices and breaks meals down into categories of carbohydrates, proteins, fiber, fat and daily vitamins. This digital journal is fast, easy and promotes a better well-being.
Have a bunch of junk you want to get rid of, but don’t want to organize a garage sale? Put your used items on letgo and people in your area can place offers for your goods. Simply post a photo of your item and how much you wish to sell it for – it’s that easy! You can also purchase items within the App’s user friendly and easy to navigate interface.
An adorably designed language learning App, Duolingo is fun and easy to use. It allows you to navigate through language lessons at your own pace. You can save lessons and revisit them at a later date or review past lessons you might need a refresher on. This App incorporates written, visual and audio tutorials to ensure all areas of language comprehension are being targeted. Completely free and much more interactive than other expensive language guides out there, Duolingo features several games and puzzles that make learning fun.
Move over conventional navigation systems! Waze is an inventive App that helps you avoid annoying (and dangerous) slow-downs such as accidents, construction and heavy traffic. The App will automatically find the fastest route using back roads, avoiding roadblocks and improving your commute. Waze is a community based App that uses updates in real time from other drivers who report slowdowns on our roads, allowing up-to-the minute changes in traffic. Bonus feature: Waze can tell users where to get the cheapest gas in the area.
This App makes sending and receiving money a snap. Each user sets up their account with their own banking information, which allows them to send and receive money from any other user. It’s perfect for reimbursing roommates for rent, splitting happy hour checks or just sending your daughter a few extra bucks just because. Venmo usually deposits money into your account within 2 to 3 days of request, doesn’t charge any fees and has an ironclad data security system – so your information is safe.
- Uber and UberEats
Most of us are familiar with Uber, the independent ride share company who has made traditional taxis obsolete in most major cities. Well now Uber has unleashed its tyranny on the meal delivery business too. Uber drivers can now accept requests from customers to pick up food orders from their favorite local eateries. Your favorite eatery doesn’t have to offer delivery services, you can simply place your order with your driver through UberEats and they will place and pick up your order for you.
Conventional hotels are becoming a thing of the past with the recent take off of Airbnb, an App that allows hosts to rent out a room, entire home or even just their couch to travelers looking for a more “homey” atmosphere. Many users find that the experience makes travel seem more intimate and having their own space allows for them to truly get the feel for a new city. Hosts are usually very helpful and give great advice on local places tourists often overlook. Airbnb also hosts several unique spaces to rent such as glampers, castles, tiny houses and tree homes – fostering a truly special travel experience.
Don’t fall victim to the work of a good advertising executive. Terms like “Low Fat,” “Skinny” and “Non Fat” are often sneaky ways to label foods laced with sugar. Don’t believe us? Read the label on that low fat yogurt!
About the Author
Marissa Boardman is Lead Counselor for the Medifast Weight Control Center in Mission Valley, California. She graduated from Arizona State University with a B.A. in Psychology and has since turned her passion for health and nutrition into a career. Her interests include cooking, paddle boarding and hiking with her dog, Butters.