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It is Winter in Australia, and it is now possible for Matthew McConaughey to tell you a bedtime story. 

If you are fortunate enough to have a hot water bottle and a comfy bed, you are in for a treat. 

As you snuggle down under the doona, the gentle southern gravelly drawl starts to tell you a bedtime story called Wonder. There’s not an alright in sight, but there is a starry sky, and you are in for 35 mins of heaven. The beautiful wordsmithed tale by Chris Advansun is part of the Calm App. The sleep story feature is pure decadence. 

This is not your average meditation app. 

Founded in 2012 by Michael Action Smith and Alex Tew, social entrepreneur and the creator of Moshi Monsters; the Calm App has taken the concept of guided meditation and taken it to a new level.  

It did not take long to take off with investors like Ashton Kutcher jumping on board the chill train along with a bevy of fast pace angel investors. 

The Calm platform won the 2017 Phone app of the year, and with a revenue of 150 million in 2018 and a world full of present chaos, we can see why it is popular. 

Featuring simple icons with an intuitive For You feature based on use, categories and classes like Sleep, Meditate, Music, Calm Kids, Calm Masterclass, Breathing exercises and scene therapy make this the full suite. The scenes are seriously serene, and I am hoping in the future, there might be a VR component. 

There’s even Emergency Calm- a meditation to provide immediate relief when overwhelm hits you. You can choose 3 minutes, 5 mins or 10 minutes. The motto is Sleep more, Stress less, Live better – I can’t argue with that. 

As a meditator now for 12 years, I was keen to see what was so unique and if it was a beginners only format or if there was depth and substance. I was not disappointed. 

I was pleasantly surprised. Many of the meditations are lead by Tamara Levitt – head of mindfulness at Calm. Tamara is a Canadian author, mindfulness instructor and voice over artists. The Siri of Zen. 

There’s a meditation for Deconstructing Performance Anxiety, Calming Flight anxiety, mindful eating and wait for it; the World Cup Penalty series for those fans who need o ease anxiety of watching penalty shoot-outs. Sound baths and those sleep stories for everyone; little kid to big kid. 

Masterclasses around Gratitude, performances by Jason Kidd, Eat Pray Love’s Elizabeth Gilbert’s Masterclass on Creative Living Beyond Fear. 

The audio is sublime, high quality and if you are lucky enough to own a decent set of headphones- transcending. 

From novice to the “I can’t meditators” the Calm App is priced at $70AU a year, and I think it is worth the investment. Tip- I found the procrastination meditation highly effective. 

Now if only they had Augmented Reality; because Matthew darling, I’d really like a foot rub to go with those dulcet tones. 

Available https://www.calm.com, Google Play, Apple Itunes and your Laptop! 

Written by Kirsten Macdonald

Narnia, A Faraway Tree with a smidge of a Doc called Suess, and some Kahlil Gibran is the word charm that grew seeds in Kirsten Macdonald's imagination. She has an innate curiosity about the stories of "us" and a deep faith that is strongly supported by a dark sense of humour. Ask this wordsmith about anthropology, ancient religions, the curious nature of humanity and the incredible cuteness of sloths and you will have a conversation for hours. Writer, editor and researcher, Kirsten has developed Ponderings into a space that is now shared by a team and a shared vision that is infectiously positive and forged in good stuff.

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