Wellness App of the Week: Happier

By: Shannon McHale ’15, CRS Weight/Fitness Supervisor

We’re introducing a new blog column today – exciting, right!? Each Monday, we’ll be posting our “Wellness App of the Week”. We’ll choose an app that focuses on one or more of the six dimensions of wellness (physical, emotional, social, spiritual, intellectual, and vocational), and then test it out to provide you with an honest review.

We’re limiting the apps to ones that are free (because no college student wants yet another expense), unless something uniquely awesome and reasonably cheap catches our eye. Feel free to post your favorite wellness apps in the comments below, or share your experiences with any of the apps we review!

Without further ado, here’s our first Wellness App of the Week:

This Week’s App: Happier

happier

App : Happier
Price: FREE
For: Apple App Store, Online
Wellness Dimensions: emotional, social

Happier can help you spend some time each day appreciating the small things.

Once you create a profile, you can upload photos, quotes, or “moments” that make you smile. This app is sort of like a journal, but a little bit better – it sends you text or email reminders when you haven’t shared any “happy moments” in a while, categorizes those happy moments into collections for easy locating, and allows you to connect with others who post their own happy moments.

happier_screenshots

Happier focuses on five core beliefs about happiness:

  1. There are good moments in every day.
  2. Stop trying to be happy.
  3. Small happy moments make you happier than huge achievements.
  4. Being happier is contagious.
  5. Don’t wait to be happier.

Our Take

You’ll get the most out of this app if you have friends or family who are using it as well – or can convince them to start! It can be hard to connect with other users when you don’t already know them – and sharing something personal like “happy moments” with strangers can be kind of unsettling.  However, the app does give you the option of making your account private.

Another small downside is that the reminders (push notifications) the app sends you can be a bit much – but you can turn them off entirely, or limit them to a certain time of the day.

These drawbacks aren’t big issues compared to the benefits of the app. We love being able to post about the smallest things in everyday life that make us happy (e.g., the first Pumpkin Spice Latte of the season) without judgment.

Being able to look back and see what made you happy a day or week ago is actually really uplifting. The app made us stop a few times each day and appreciate some happy moments instead of rushing through them – and for that, we think it’s worth a shot.

If you can get on board with the hippie-esque concepts behind Happier, or are willing to at least give them a try, this app is worth downloading. It’s also free, so there’s no harm done if you feel a little weird dedicating a social media profile to happy moments in your life.

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