There is something of a – slightly snobbish – tendency to assume the worst of someone who frequently has their phone in their hand. Either they must be addicted to social media, or they’re texting someone, or it is for some other “bad” reason. However, this is deeply unfair, considering just how pivotal phones are to a human life these days. That person with their phone in their hand could, just as easily, be doing tomorrow’s grocery shopping, paying their bills, making a doctor’s appointment, or applying for a job.
Having a phone – and a connection to the internet – is as much an essential in the present day as being able to write a letter was to our grandparents. All of the above are things that a cell phone allows us to do, and for that alone, they’re worth having. However, they can give us more than that, allowing us to widen our horizons in ways that few people would have imagined just a few years ago. Below, we’ll look into a few types of app that are essential to have on your phone – for fun, for self-improvement, for learning, and more…
You should have at least ONE game app on your phone
We’ve all heard the arguments about games, including the insistence that, whether you’re playing Grand Theft Auto or Words With Friends, gaming is addictive. While this certainly can be the case, games can also be relaxing, educational, and fun. Apps such as Wordscapes can be beneficial in boosting your vocabulary and offer a way to pass some time in a productive, enjoyable way. It’s also a useful brain exercise and a handy stress-buster.
You should have a meditation app on your phone
If you’ve never before tried meditating, it is worth getting the hang of it because we live in a world that moves fast and it is very easy to become consumed in it. Life can feel like a hamster wheel with a cycle of wake-work-eat-sleep-repeat, and downloading the likes of Headspace or Calm can allow you to guide a period of mindfulness whenever you have a break. A key tip here is not to rush meditation or try to snatch a few minutes here and there – this defeats the whole purpose.
You should have one language-learning app on your phone
Not everyone is a linguist, but learning a foreign language exercises the linguistic centers of the brain and helps you keep a key part of your mind fully active. Picking a language to learn can be based on your priorities. Are you going to Mexico on holiday soon? Then learn a bit of conversational Spanish. Fancy a challenge? Give Finnish ago. These languages, and others, are available on apps such as Duolingo, although be prepared to be harassed by a cartoon owl if you don’t keep up your learning.
You should have a news app, but turn off the notifications
It is beneficial to keep up with what is going on in the world, but it is important that things are that way around. Switching on news notifications can result in a feeling of “Oh, what now?” every time you hear an alert, and it’s not healthy to feel like that. So, when you choose to do so, you can keep up with the news, but the news doesn’t keep up with you.
With some of the above apps on your phone, you can feel informed, entertained, challenged, and relaxed, all thanks to the little rectangle you carry around – and if anyone judges you for it, that’s their problem.