This iPhone app will get you out of any slump — meditation, without meditating

Screenshots of the Superhuman app from the Apple App Store.
The Superhuman app has a calming and colorful design. (Image credit: Superhuman app / Apple App Store)

A screenshot of the Superhuman app logo from the Apple App Store.

(Image credit: Superhuman app / Apple App Store)

iPhone / iPad - Free trial (In-app purchases) 

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It’s taken a long time, but I look forward to meditating every morning. Not because the act itself is necessarily enjoyable (in fact it’s not) but because when I stop, just for a few days, it’s clear what the benefits are. For me, it’s that I feel a little calmer, there’s more space in my day, I’m less reactive and I tend to sleep better. 

But I know meditation isn’t for everyone. It can lead to more frustration or it can simply be tricky to integrate into an already busy routine. This is why, if you want the benefits of meditation without the meditating part, I highly recommend Superhuman

Superhuman is built around “activations” and they sound a lot like guided meditations, but the whole point is you’re engaging with them more actively, you can even listen to them when you’re active. You can choose ones optimized for when you’re walking, doing chores or nodding off to sleep. This is why they’re ideal for people who are too busy to dedicate time to uninterrupted meditation and those who find the thought of sitting in silence trying to meditate too daunting. 

Get ready to activate

I know what you’re thinking. But what actually are activations? Well, they take lots of different forms in Superhuman. When you first download the app you’re asked a bunch of questions about your goals, habits and the amount of time you have spare. The app will then serve up a personalized dashboard of content to suit you. 

So right now, I have an activation called “Re-Energize During an Afternoon Lull” on my Superhuman For You page. The goal of this one is to power me through the rest of the day and it’s meant to be listened to as I’m out walking. It features a mix of positive affirmations, mindfulness questions like “where are you feeling strong?”, and helpful suggestions. But it's the calming music, calming guiding voice and nudges towards positivity that I think have the biggest impact. 

Other activations include “Align With Future Self Before Socializing”, which is like a calming pep talk and “Design Your Next Glow Up”, a reflective journaling practice with lots of prompts. There are others that are designed for when you're resting or seated, so if you do just want an alternative meditation app, there's plenty here for you too. 

Sure the format and the nature of the activations might not suit everyone. I’d recommend it for people who are already a little familiar with some of the basics of deep breathing and mindfulness. But if you’re looking for a way to level up and add some calm to your day that sits somewhere between a guided meditation and a personal development podcast, this is it. 

I’m not going to lie, Superhuman is an expensive app at $25.99/£25.99 a month and $159.99/£159.99 a year. However, if you’re going to use it several times throughout the day, it’s still good value. Luckily, it comes with a free trial. If you sign up for the free trial, please don’t sit on it. Get using the app to figure out if it’s really for you. If it is and you can afford it, sign up, chalk the cost up to your wellbeing and use it often. If it’s not, there are other options out there that might help that won’t cost you quite so much – I’d start with Balance, which I think is a meditation app with a difference, as it's incredibly simple to use and has a lot of guided practices.


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Becca Caddy

Becca Caddy is a contributor to iMore, as well as a freelance journalist and author. She’s been writing about consumer tech and popular science for more than a decade, covering all kinds of topics, including why robots have eyes and whether we’ll experience the overview effect one day. She’s particularly interested in VR/AR, wearables, digital health, space tech and chatting to experts and academics about the future. She’s contributed to TechRadar, T3, Wired, New Scientist, The Guardian, Inverse and many more. Her first book, Screen Time, came out in January 2021 with Bonnier Books. She loves science-fiction, brutalist architecture, and spending too much time floating through space in virtual reality. Last time she checked, she still holds a Guinness World Record alongside iMore Editor in Chief Gerald Lynch for playing the largest game of Tetris ever made, too.