Day-planning apps aim to
help achieve healthier lifestyle
Send a link to a friend
[June 03, 2014]
By Natasha Baker
TORONTO (Reuters) - Feeling
stressed, overwhelmed and finding it difficult to fit
everything into the day? New apps are designed to help
people pace themselves better to achieve a healthier,
more balanced lifestyle.
Owaves, for the iPad, is one of several new wellness planning apps
that aim to help users reduce stress by visualizing how they will
spend their day.
“Day planning is a very important and under-appreciated piece of
achieving wellness. It gives you a roadmap,” said Royan Kamyar,
founder and chief executive officer of Owaves, based in San Diego,
The free app includes a 24-hour clock and lets users drag and drop
activities essential to health, such as exercise, sleep, relaxation
and nutrition, into the day planner to fit into the normal routine
of work and play.
“Being cognizant of how you spend time is a fundamental first step
towards improving health and wellness,” said Kamyar.
Designed by game developers, the app also encourages people to
incorporate activities like meditation and spending time with
friends and family into their day.
“Something as simple as a half hour of meditation a day is good for
you to lower stress, improve memory and reduce depression. But most
people will say they don’t have that time, which is usually a
problem of time management,” Kamyar added.
Users can also save routines they plan to repeat regularly.
Other life balance apps include Candooit and Life-Clock, which are
both for iPhone and cost 99 cents.
Scott Schieman, a professor of sociology at the University of
Toronto in Canada who studies work stress and health, believes the
apps may help people gain a greater awareness that they need to take
time to unwind.
[to top of second column]
“With our minds being so cluttered with work and other
responsibilities, it’s really important to plan some kind of
disengagement or time away,” he said in an interview, adding that
even a five-minute break can be beneficial.
“Planning is key because it’s easy to let other things take
priority,” he added.
But Schieman is skeptical about whether people will follow through
on their plans.
“At a minimum these kinds of apps keep your mind more focused on the
way you’re actually spending your time, but it might raise awareness
of how little control you have of that,” he said.
(Editing by Patricia Reaney and Eric Walsh)
[© 2014 Thomson Reuters. All rights
Copyright 2014 Reuters. All rights reserved. This material may not be published,
broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.