Over the last five years, the meditation apps industry has been developed actively. Based on the demand for self-development, meditation apps such as Headspace and Calm have already achieved success. They have opened access to meditative practices to all ordinary people, turning an interest into an experience.
We decided to delve deeper into the future of the meditation practice industry. In the article, we describe the prejudices that can hinder the globalization of the industry and offer recommendations for new market players.
The Business Around Meditation is About Content
Right now, most app creators talk about meditation as content. The way their meditation apps work is that you select a particular recording and click play. It’s comparable to music listening on SoundCloud or watching a series on Netflix. Then, you follow the narrator’s instructions until the audio ends.
Of course, there are advantages to this format. But unlike television and music, meditation wasn’t always about creating and consuming content. Moreover, whereas guided meditation used to be part of the practice for beginners, it is now the only experience available in meditation apps. As a result, the true potential of meditation as a philosophical practice is lost.
How can the situation be rectified? First, meditation apps need to improve and personalize meditations for the individual user. Over time, users lose interest in the app as they “listen to all the meditations.” Second, next-generation app developers should optimize content given the user’s growing demand for best practices.
The Startup Culture is Incompatible With the Tradition of Meditation Schools
Many experts and teachers of the traditional meditation school criticize modern meditation apps. Their main argument is that the programs are superficial. As a result, it is impossible to arrive at the depth and rigor of different teaching methods, unlike in face-to-face classes. On the one hand, they’re right. But on the other hand, meditation apps create competition for their business.
How to remedy the situation? Gradually, meditation practices, like everything else in this world, are evolving and technologizing. Most niche startups genuinely love meditation and are interested in creating an excellent product. But few of them are experts. To get to the next level, meditation startups need to bring meditation coaches and teachers into the meditation app development process from the start.
The Main Goal is to Pull Money Out of Subscribers
Typically, developers treat their product as a business that generates revenue. With that in mind, it’s in their best interest to engage and encourage users to renew subscriptions to their product. But don’t forget that meditation isn’t about money; it’s about philosophy and wisdom.
The true purpose of practice is to lead a person to the point where they don’t need to listen to mindfulness lessons. Although the course has never hindered anyone, progress is made when the meditator cultivates independence and self-sufficiency.
How to fix the situation? A meditation app cannot position itself as the only way to progress. Honestly, startups need to understand that they only enable the user to develop mindfulness first. Help users understand their goals, develop a systematic mindset, and map out a route for further development outside of the app.
Group Meditations are Better than Individual Meditations
Now, every app is designed for users to practice one-on-one with themselves. It is in stark contrast to traditional teaching methods. Originally, meditation practices were social. Students communicated with a teacher (mentor or community) and shared experiences and thoughts. The social expertise makes the meditation complete, inspiring, and motivating to continue practicing with like-minded people.
How do you fix this situation? So far, meditation apps have excluded any communication with other people. Developers need to think about and implement functionality for social interaction. Being able to conduct collaborative practices can be a competitive advantage.
Meditation Apps Don’t Account for Audience Diversity
The meditation industry regularly encounters the nuances of inclusivity and audience tolerance. Institutions, systems, and cultures have been working for decades to reduce any barriers and prejudices about the diversity of people. It’s essential to allow everyone to enjoy and benefit from practices. But, in terms of mobile app development, there is still a lot of work to be done.
Objectify the physical body. The meditation industry distorts the idea of beauty. A similar problem exists about skin color and “unconventional” groups of people.
More often than not, a monthly subscription to meditation apps costs about $10. Meditation is positioned as a product for a paying audience and systematically filters out millions of people. It also suggests that new startups are coming into the industry to make money and not provide social value.
How to fix the situation? Tolerance and natural beauty have become a global trend. The app development industry has a long way to go. But, even in the example, a positive dynamic is evident.
All that needs to be done is to take some social responsibility and create a product for people. A startup runs the risk of failing by ignoring the interests of its audience and overpricing its services.
What are the Benefits of Meditation?
It is not enough to list the benefits of meditation. When you begin to practice and do it more or less regularly, you will discover many pleasant and unexpected little things that suddenly become apparent in the process.
Benefits that scientists have repeatedly proved:
- the practitioner finds it easier to concentrate;
- sleep problems go away;
- the restoration of performance;
- a person becomes more conscious;
- anxiety decreases;
- calmness appears;
- as one’s health improves, so does one’s ability to recover;
- pain calm;
- sexual life improves;
- a man lives longer.
In particular, scientists have proven that meditation helps restore brain cells, reduces stress levels, improves memory, and positively affects learning. But that’s not all.
How Do I Start Meditating?
Meditation always starts with the relaxation of the body. It helps to get rid of tension and get into the correct state. It is a great way to get rid of insomnia! But it is better to study meditation when you do not want to sleep.
For beginners, it is better to practice sitting rather than lying down, as there is a chance of falling asleep (this is also a good result when it is appropriate). The optimal posture for beginners are sitting on a chair or armchair (hands-on-hips or armrests, feet on the floor). Your back should be straight and feel comfortably supported behind you.
Close your eyes. Concentrate on your breathing. Take a couple of calm but fairly deep breaths and exhale. And then direct your attention to the top of your head. Imagine that a warm ray of sunlight arises above your head and warms it. It goes down to your forehead, relaxes it, and then moves down to your eyes, cheekbones, lips, neck, back of your head, to your shoulders. Finally, it fills your hands, chest, stomach, hips, legs, and feet with relaxing, pleasant warmth.
Maintain your focus on each part of your body for as long as it takes to relax. When the whole body is relaxed, listen to your sensations. Perhaps somewhere else, there is tension, pain, or discomfort. If so, eliminate them in the same way, directing your attention there. Then, without opening your eyes, look “inside the bridge of your nose” and be “here and now,” observing yourself, your sensations, your thoughts, feeling comfortable and secure. Keep your attention on your body as a whole.
How Do I Meditate In The Home?
It is a natural question because most of us have very little time for privacy, and meditation classes require peace. Nevertheless, there is always time and opportunity if there is a desire. For example, you can make arrangements with your family or get up early in the morning.
What are the benefits of meditation? How do you learn to meditate, and why? If you need to calm down and relax after a hectic day at work, make sure that nobody disturbs you for 15-20 minutes. Wear comfortable and spacious clothes, make sure that you feel comfy in them — not cold and not hot. Sounds of relaxation or appropriate music would be helpful for more immersion.
When to Wait for Results?
Waiting is a lousy assistant, so don’t dwell on it. The results will be noticeable only if you meditate regularly. Allocate a few minutes every day at a convenient time. It is best to meditate simultaneously to make it a habit.
Meditation can be an effective and quick method of mental and psychological relaxation. It doesn’t even require you to leave your workplace.