Using Apps to Unwind When Overwhelmed

Marlene Benitez, Co-Web Designer

Many students tend to get stressed over school and the homework, quizzes, and tests their classes bring. There are, however, many ways to reduce this kind of stress, like managing your time, studying with friends, etc. But what do you do when even then, you feel overwhelmed?

The best ‘treatment’ when you are nervous or ‘in your head’ is to unwind and get out of it, not literally, of course. We often wallow in thoughts filled with “what ifs” and worrying over to-do lists, so stepping back and quieting your mind is imperative. Games and apps are a perfect way to distract yourself whenever you start feeling caught up in your thoughts. Here are some that I have personally found very helpful:


A classic app involving meditation and audios to help you “experienc[e] better sleep, lower stress, and less anxiety.” Meditation is the first thing that comes to mind with this app, where you are encouraged to put on your headphones, listen to an audio of your choice and relax. 

The goal of each audio differs but mainly seeks to help you settle down and breathe deep to let out any pent up stress. You can choose however long a meditation audio you want depending on your needs. If you need a quick refresher or a long destresser, it’s there for you to use.

There are an additional variety of features for you to use if you find meditation difficult or unappealing. Music to ease stress or focus when work needs to get done, stories for you to read, and stretching exercises. Calm essentially introduces you to helpful tools/skills that you can use for the rest of your life to unwind and reduce stress.

Zen Koi

The combination of relaxing, meditative music and its easy going atmosphere make Zen Koi perfect for distracting yourself. As the name suggests, koi fish are the centre of the game and you simply swim around the pond while trying to catch food. The more you eat, the more you grow and as you level up you get points that can improve your fish’s stats. 

It is not at all challenging to play or progress, which means there is nothing that can stress you out further. Instead, it allows you to settle down and focus on simple jobs at your own pace. Whenever I find myself feeling anxious or panicked, just 4-5 minutes of swimming around the pond, listening to the calming music was enough to ground my mind. 

Neko Atsume

A game filled with adorable cats and fun, simple visuals where you set out food and toys for cats to come and visit your yard. Each cat that visits leaves fish, which is the currency used to buy new accessories for your play area. 

The cats that visit have their own names, features, and favorite toys that you can view in the album. You can check in several times a day to see what new cats come as you collect money to expand your area and make it suited for even the rarest cats. Even though it seems silly and childish, it’s still a great light-hearted distraction from the tough times we’re all experiencing right now.