Happy weekend! This weekend turned out to be quite pleasant. Lots of sunshine allowed for a great time under the sun. I got to go out and do some landscaping and gardening.
Before I get into the review, I wanted to take a moment to go over something that I mentioned in a previous blog: living in the present moment.
As I was gardening this weekend, I found my mind shifting to thoughts of things out of my control, in the past, and just general nit-picking. Have you ever had that happen to you? Here you are trying to have a pleasant moment and the next thing you know your raking a clear ground devoid of leaves because you’ve been so deep in your thoughts.
So what did I do? I found myself in possession of a couple of tools, some I already have been over in this blog.
1st I said to myself, Angelica, we have been over this, its time to let this go.
2nd, I went through my affirmations. I also found myself affirming many of my traits, more than I had listed before.
3rd, I reminded myself, if I am going to have any joy, I need to remain in the present.
4th, I continued to garden, but this time I took a moment and went over each of my senses with what I was doing. What do I smell? I smell the spring air and the flowers blooming, the wind carrying the fragrance of someone washing their car. What do I see? I see the fallen dead leaves on the ground, on the branches above I see the new life, new buds giving way and raising their green leaves to soak up the sun. What do I hear? I hear the birds chirping, the sound of wind as it moves the wind chimes into their song.
When I finished these exercises, I found myself in such a better place mentally, I was able to enjoy the present moment and keep moving forward happily.
I share this, to provide an insight to myself and how far I’ve come, but to also demonstrate that these tools really do help. Before, my line of thinking would have led me to a downward spiral. I now find that I have ways to stop the spiral, maybe a slide a little, but I find I now have tools that let me climb back up. In a way, I think of it as trying to climb a mountain. Untrained and without tools, climbing the mountain is incredible hard. With training, and tools, the mountain becomes that much more manageable. So those of you reading this blog, keep working at it, you may not see immediate results but with hard work and determination, there is a way.
Alright, onto the review!
What is the Shine App?
The Shine App is a daily motivational and meditation mobile application. You can find it at the iTunes stores as a free purchase. The application is meant to be used as a daily check in tool and a way to ground yourself in the morning. There are two versions of the app, the unpaid version and the paid version. I will detail out what you can expect from both versions.
Shine App Unpaid Version
The app is pretty easy to navigate. There are two sections, the Shine text and the Audio library. The menu on the side allows you to see favorites, settings, shine articles and to rate shine.
So, what can I expect from the unpaid version?
Under the unpaid version you can expect the following;
– Daily Reminders to check in to the Shine App
– Access to the Shine text area
– Daily Articles devoted to self care, relationships and general pep talks
– Daily Gratitude check ins
For a free version of an app, I felt like I got a lot out of it. Upon entering the app Monday thru Friday, I could expect 2 articles devoted to self care. What’s great about the app is that when you go through the Shine text area, it feels like you are going through a conversation with someone, you could click the link to the article and read it in full or continue with the text portion and receive take aways from the article.
Once you’ve gone through the articles, you are prompted for a gratitude check in, what do you feel grateful for and what are you going to do fell good today. In order to check in, you have to text a response to both of those questions. To get the most out of the app, I encourage to be completely sincere and truthful with the answers. I found myself being grateful for being able to watch the sunrise to the innovations that still astound me.
I liked that there was a Congratulations! you just hit day x of your check in streak.
There was a little tease at the end too, it would say listen to the self talk audio of the day, but of course, you can only get that with the paid version.
Of the audio, you could sample an audio talk, but the majority of the audio is locked.
Overall, for the unpaid, I definitely give it 4 out of 5 jelly donuts (like that? Jelly donuts 🙂 )
Shine App Paid Version
What can I expect from the paid version?
The premium version of the app has a lot more bells and whistles compared to the unpaid version. Here is what you can expect
– Full access to the self talk audio
The audio includes; 3 and 7 Day Challenges, Meditations, Daily Rituals, Nightcaps and Shine Reads
– Download and listen to talks offline
– All this along with what I mentioned in the unpaid version
I did a couple of Shine Reads and a 7 Day Challenge. I did a 7 Day Challenge To More Joy. When you do a challenge, you have to go through each day sequential. The first day is available while the rest remains locked. Once you do the first day of the challenge, it will unlock the 2nd day of the challenge. So, essentially, you could do the challenge all in one day but I did it one day at a time.
After each audio, you can get a takeaway from the audio (as you can with anytime you do an audio from the app) and it gives you a nice summary in your shine text area of what you should have taken away from the audio. I really enjoyed these summaries on top of the challenge.
I really like how they setup the audio as well. I feel like their staff has done a nice job with incorporating the sound and topic at hand. I also like how they incorporated breathing and stretching into the audio clips as a way to help center. I did have a glitch a couple of times where all I heard was the music and no talking.
New additions to the Shine App
In the last couple of days, the shine app has upgraded their check in portion of the app. Not only can you do a gratitude check in, you can also do a mood check in. From there, you have a couple of options; Read up on advice, Listen to a pep talk, Free-write and Lets talk it out. Or maybe you just want to keep it with what you have done so far and select I’m done for now.
I think this is great. I think this now opens up the doors for those who heal and learn in different ways. I am not necessarily a talk it out person, so having the option to read or listen is a lot more ideal to me. Now, since I have the paid version, I am not sure if these options are present in the unpaid version. I would assume yes, but please let me know if otherwise.
Overall, the paid version gets 4 out of 5 jelly donuts.
I would love to see a way to connect to someone or maybe see how you can tie other apps to it. Example, a fitbit app to encourage physical activity that connects with a self help app.
I hope this review helps you in your self help journey and you decide to give it a shot!