Day-planning apps aim to help achieve healthier lifestyle

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TORONTO – Feeling stressed, overwhelmed and finding it difficult fit everything into the day? apps are designed help people pace themselves better achieve a healthier, more balanced lifestyle.

Owaves, for the iPad, is one of several wellness apps that aim help users stress by visualizing how they will spend their day.

“Day 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, California.

The free app includes a 24-hour clock and lets users drag and drop activities essential , such as exercise, sleep, relaxation and nutrition, into the day planner fit into the normal routine of work and play.

“Being cognizant of how you spend is a fundamental first step towards improving and wellness,” said Kamyar.

Designed by game developers, the app also encourages people to incorporate activities like meditation and spending friends and into their day.

“Something as simple as a half hour of meditation a day is good for you to lower stress, improve memory and depression. But most people will say they don’t have that , which is usually a problem of management,” Kamyar added.

Users can also save routines they plan to repeat regularly.

Other balance apps include Candooit and -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 , believes the apps may help people gain a greater awareness that they to take time to unwind.

our minds being so cluttered work and other responsibilities, it’ 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.

is key because it’ easy to let other things take priority,” he added.

But Schieman is skeptical about whether people will follow through their .

“At a minimum these kinds of apps keep your mind more focused the way you’re actually spending your time, but it might raise awareness of how little control you have of that,” he said. (Reuters)