An important aspect of working with teens is being able to meet them where they are, whether that’s mentally, emotionally, or physically. We realized that in order to do this, we needed a better way to engage them – and what better way to do that than through their phones? And so the app was born.
Why build a meditation app when there are already so many successful ones? HeadSpace, MyLife, Insight Timer, Calm . . .well, the app complements our core 12-week school mindfulness program and is designed to keep students participating long after the program is over.
Essentially, students were introduced to the road map of mindfulness during their 12-week course, and the app helps to keep their compasses pointed in the right direction, while having a little fun at the same time. This is super important because it provides participants with additional tools that empower them to self-improve, self-regulate and reduce stress and trauma-related mental challenges. That’s critical in a normal environment, but during this pandemic? It’s crucial.
The Inner Strength Mobile app helps students to cultivate a daily practice by encouraging them to become aware of their moods, triggers, thoughts, feelings and emotions; experience different meditation activities (including mindful movement); and explore various topics such as culture change, brain evolution, teenage stress, and relationships. And that’s not all! They can even listen to guided meditations and write short journal entries. Students will also be able to connect with each other outside of the classroom, building a climate of positive peer-support and a sense of community.
Here’s a quick peek at some of the tools that students can access:
You may be thinking, “Okay, this sounds great! But didn’t you say something about meeting teens where they are? If a bunch of adults are making an app for teens, how do you know it works?” Glad you asked! Inner Strength is all about authenticity so, what’s more authentic than getting a teen to test your app? And that’s exactly what we did! Check out next week’s blog to learn more about our beta testing process with our teen interns, how we did it – and most importantly – what we learned.