Holidays and stress go together like yin and yang, the positive and negative forces pulling at, yet complementing, each other. What’s not to love about the holidays? It’s a time for Christmas cheers, gift-giving, family, parties and, for some, traveling. But with the festivities come the stress and anxiety of planning, budgeting, and saying no to invites.
Keep your sanity and check out the 6 great apps for coping with holiday stress.
Amid all the flurry and bustle of Christmas, you’ll need time alone to take a moment, recoup and de-stress. And what better way to do it than with Buddhify, one of the best mindfulness mobile apps for beginners and veterans of meditation. You can choose from 15 of your day’s activities to meditate with this simple and easy to use app. It has over 80 guided tracks to choose from, from going to sleep to waking up, whether you’re at home, at work, online or traveling. This app keeps you grounded during the holiday season and is certainly worth the $5 or so to purchase. This meditation app is available on iTunes and Google Play.
Making that gift list and shopping for them is probably on top of anyone’s holiday stressors. You have to make sure no one’s left out then think of the appropriate gifts for them. And that’s not even including the actual shopping. Thank God for online retail stores and mobile apps that let you plan your Christmas gift list on the go and without having to brave the crowds. Santa’s Bag has the most important features one will need in gift-giving planning. For a list of people to give gifts to, you can import friends and contacts from Facebook or your contact list. Then you can put your gift ideas beside their names and add notes. You can also keep track of your expenses and budget by putting down an amount for each recipient, share your gift list with friends and get a reminder of how many days you have left before the big day comes.
Some features are not really necessary, like putting images beside the names. And while the countdown is helpful for some, it might be stressful for others.
Looking at and sharing photos can be a fantastic stress reliever and being able to create a new work of art from a picture makes taking photos even better. PicsArt is one of the best photo-editing apps that work on iOS, Android and Windows phone. Its interface is easy to use and it has rich image-editing capabilities, effects and filters that can make the most uncreative person an artist. You can be versatile with its tons of customizable tools. You can clone, crop, blend, enhance, draw and paint and do overlays. If you’re an iPhone user, you can view the enhanced photos with your Apple TV with AirPlay, the better to do justice to your photo-editing skills. PicsArt can also be used to make a collage. And to add to its desirability, it’s free.
Traveling for the holidays can be a great way to get away from it all, because for some, it is also the only time they can travel. Apps take away the hassle of trip planning. But from flights and hotel bookings to places to see and things to do at your destination, you’ll need more than one app.
This popular app available on iOS and Android helps you choose hotels, restaurants and places of interest around the world. So wherever you’re headed, you can browse through reviews from real travelers and see pictures of the establishments taken by real people, not ad agencies. You can also get contact information and the range of prices and ratings, although you’ll have to learn how to filter reviews.
One of the most popular and reliable sites for finding accommodations for a trip is Booking.com, and there’s an app for it for your iPhone, iPad or Android device. You can get the best deals for hotels, from 5-star hotels and resorts to backpackers’ lodgings. What’s great about this app is, there is no reservation fee for booking and your credit card information and other personal data are encrypted.
This app is another product from tech giant Google. It is best used in the planning stages of a travel. Google Flights gives you a list of airports, flights and airlines for your destination, based on the info you put in, such as date range and budget. When you have chosen your flight, it then directs you to sites for booking, like Orbitz, Priceline and other similar services. Google Flights can be viewed on your smartphone via Google Search.