We know that self-care is an important element of wellness. What most of us struggle with is finding the time for self-care. Making time for self-care can be difficult when you’ve got work, school, side hustles, family, and somehow adding in a social life.

The problem with not making time for self-care is that, at some point, it’s going to affect all of those other areas in your life. Sooner or later you are going to be burnt out if you don’t start prioritizing taking care of yourself first. 

The good news is that self-care doesn’t have to be a huge time commitment. Although, I do suggest doing activities like a nap, bubble bath, or even a massage from time to time. The truth is that self-care can be simple acts that let us allow us to prioritize ourselves.

We already spend a lot of time on our phones each day, why not dedicate some of that time to self-care?

There are numerous apps that are beneficial to the topic of self-care. I’ve tried many of these apps. Today I’m sharing a few of my favorites as well as my overall view on self-care apps. By the end of this post, you’ll be able to discern whether self-care apps are for you, figure out what types of self-care apps are out there, and which ones to start with.

Pros & Cons of Free Self-Care Apps

While there are many different types of free self-care apps to fit your needs, one thing that bothered me the most in these apps was the lack of features in the free apps. I get that these apps need to make money, but there are different ways to go about offering premium services. Some of the free apps I downloaded automatically pushes the premium subscription on you. The activities you can do in these apps are very limited. It almost seemed like it should just be a paid app overall. 

That being said, there are many free self-care apps that I thought do a great job of providing a generous amount of free content. They do this without being pushy on the premium features. These are the apps I would be more than likely to purchase the premium version someday.

Another pro of having free self-care apps on your phone is the convenience of it. From meditating to tracking your mood, and everything in between, you can have it all in the palm of your hands. The only con of this is that these apps, of course, need storage to be able to download. I have not currently seen an all-in-one free self-care app. That means you’ll need to download multiple apps to get all the self-care features you may want in an app. 

Types of Self-Care Apps: and My Favorites In Each

1. Meditation:

There are many benefits to meditation. This particular activity doesn’t come naturally to me, but it is something I’m trying to work on.

What I look for in a free meditation app is multiple free options, variety of length in meditations, and different categories.

My favorite so far is Stop, Breathe & Think. When you open the app you are met with the task to breathe for 10 seconds. Then you just answer a few different questions to determine how you feel physically, mentally, and emotionally.

The app will provide you with different suggested meditations based on your answers. I like that you don’t have to figure out which one to try. This is helpful for beginners like me.

2. Basic Needs:

This is a broad category. Think of how you take care of yourself in the day to day tasks, like drinking water, sleeping, working out, and structuring your day.

An app I’ve been loving in this category is Drink Water Reminder. It’s simple to use and provides plenty of reminders throughout the day. You’ll be drinking more water throughout your day by downloading this app.

3. Mood Tracker:

I first found the importance of mood tracking when I was first introduced to bullet journals. I didn’t realize there were apps for it as well.

What’s great about tracking your mood, is that you can pick up on similarities and patterns. These patterns can help you be more aware in the future.

While there are many mood tracker apps, my favorite has been Moodpath. You don’t just track your mood once throughout the day. You can track it three times, morning, midday, and evening.

The app doesn’t just ask how you are feeling. You’ll also answer a few questions and rate how much the answer impacts you. After two weeks you’ll have a full assessment of your emotional health based on what you track each day.

4. Affirmations:

I don’t say affirmations as often as I should. I tried many affirmation apps but there is one that blew them all away, in my opinion.

The app is called I am. My favorite feature is that you pick what topics you want your affirmations to be based on. You get to set how many times during the day you want to see an affirmation. The affirmations will pop up on your phone screen throughout your day. Many of these affirmations have been just what I needed during that time. For such a simple feature this app is powerful. 

5. Journal:

For those of you that don’t like to put pen to paper, a journaling app may be just what you need.

I found this in the app Gratitude. If the name didn’t give it away for you, it’s primarily based on gratitude. What I like about this is that it pops up with a prompt each day. That way it not only reminds you to journal, but it also gives you a place to start.

6. Chatbots:

Therapy can be expensive. Many people don’t have access to this, which can make it hard when dealing with mental health. At first, I thought that there was no way a chatbot could help my mental health.

After trying a few I have found Woebot to be my favorite. How this works is you check in with the chatbot daily. Depending on the conversation, you get activities, advice, and more. I wouldn’t say this type of app can replace therapy, but for a free self-care app, it’s a great start.

7. Self-Improvement:

Apps in this category are great ways to create good habits, provide stress relief, get rid of negative thoughts, etc. The app that I feel does this the best is Happify.

It helps with all of those mentioned above, and it’s fun. You play games, learn new ways to cope with negative thoughts, and other activities that will get you on your way to feeling, well, happy. 

This is just a fraction of the free self-care apps available to you. Try some and see if they help you implement more self-care in your life. Which apps have you tried and loved?

And as a fun bonus, be sure to check out this 30 Day Self-Care Challenge