Opinion: Mental health apps benefit everybody

Apps like stoic. improve the happiness and tranquility by helping users track their mental health


Madison Wise

Every day, users can track how they are feeling and receive encouragement during down moments using mental health apps like stoic.

Michelene Havard, Staff Writer

I’m standing around feeling far away—flustered with two minutes left until the bell rings. I see one of my favorite former teachers, so I crack a smile. When my teacher asks, “How are you?” My immediate response is to say good, but I really haven’t had a good day.  When students are having a hard time processing their emotions, technology can be a useful tool to help them achieve self-actualization.

Every now and again I ask myself, “How do I really feel?” With technology, people can learn how to practice stoicism in a healthy way. Everyone feels a range of emotions, but on a bad day it is harder for people to express how they truly feel. 

An application on my iPhone called stoic. is a safe space for me to track how I’m really feeling without worrying about what others will think. A stoic hides their emotions and accepts their fate. stoic. is a mental health training app that helps people keep track of their mood, journal, meditate, overcome fear, and breathe. The app motivates me to prioritize my main focus of the day, and in the evening I record my fulfillment of those goals. I can see the statistics of my mood distribution throughout the week, and now I realize Monday is only as bad as I make it out to be. 

Stoicism is an ancient Greek philosophy, which is why every morning the app shows me an inspiring quote from a famous philosopher. The philosophers inspire thought-provoking messages which opens my mind to ideas while I’m journaling. I appreciate that the philosophies are interchangeable. There is an option to choose other philosophies such as Buddhism, Taoism, or Catholic. 

stoic. encourages me to write a list of things that I’m grateful for while journaling in the morning. It’s a rewarding feeling to think positively even if I know my day is going to be tedious. 

The developers of stoic. respect the privacy of every individual user of the app—they cannot and do not read journal entries. There is something enlightening about stoic that draws me back to it everyday when a regular pen and paper does not. stoic. was featured as Apple’s App of the day for its engaging exercises and trends. 

Three of my favorite quotes that gave me a new perspective:

Marcus Aurelius wrote, “Today I escaped from anxiety. Or no, I discarded it because it was within me, in my own perceptions—not outside.” 

Seneca wrote, “Putting things off is the biggest waste of life: it snatches away each day as it comes, and denies us the present by promising the future. The greatest obstacle to living is expectancy, which hangs upon tomorrow, and loses today. You are arranging what lies in Fortuneś control, and abandoning what lies in yours. What are you looking at? To what goal are you straining? The whole future lies in uncertainty: live immediately.¨

Epictetus wrote, “̈Don’t explain your philosophy. Embody it.”

I tried stoic. not knowing how much I needed it for reflection. Journaling has never been easier and more calming—some apps make you feel like you are your mental illness but this one doesn’t.