5 free guided meditation apps to cultivate inner peace



Published Oct 4, 2022


By Lebohang Mosia

In the wake of the pandemic, guided meditation became a staple for mental health, as we moved towards practising mindfulness in an effort to keep sane in the current fast-paced world we live in today.

Stress is rampant, so it shouldn’t come as a surprise that there was a surge of mindfulness apps in 2020 when the pandemic changed the course of our lives forever.

According to the Wall Street Journal, between 2015 and 2018, more that 2 000 new guided meditation apps were launched globally.

We can’t deny how demanding lives are – it demands our time and our mind and this requires that we actually make a concerted effort to be still for a moment, and most importantly, breathe, and exercise awareness to achieve mental clarity and emotional stability.

You may already have a meditation routine tailored to your spiritual needs, or you may be a beginner who has never heard or practised meditation before and you’re looking to inform yourself about the value meditation can bring to your everyday life.

Regardless, guided meditation is wonderful and well worth delving into.

Naomi Marshak, professional Yogi at The Shala Cape Town Yoga School said, “There are two types of mindfulness meditation: silent meditation and guided meditation.

“Silent meditation is done by yourself, as you look inwardly to find inner peace. Guided meditation involves listening to a trained professional as they calmly lead you though your practice.

“This might feel like an invasion of privacy at first, considering people associate meditation with silence and stillness, but once you grapple with the power of meditation, having a guide becomes very important to your spiritual growth.”

Here are five free guided meditation apps that can help cultivate true inner peace:

Ten Percent Happier Meditation

This guided meditation app is perfect for beginners looking to master the art of concentration.

The app even has a podcast entitled “More Than A Feeling”, where the host, Saleem Reshamwala, goes on a mindfulness adventure to find answers about the nature of meditation.

Picture: App Store

He interviews neuroscientists, esoteric historians, psychologists and philosophers alike, to see how ordinary people navigate their emotions.

Reshamwala interrogates the human condition and helps listeners define their feelings in relation to others.


If you are looking to improve the quality of your sleep, then you should download award-winning mindfulness meditation app Calm, whether you’re a meditation enthusiast or not.

It offers meditation master-classes, relaxing guided meditations and even stories to help you sleep.

Not only is it available on iOS and Android but it is also available on desktop, and according to Healthline, has seen more that 100 million downloads worldwide.


A large part of the practice of mindfulness involves breathing – and Breathwrk is the best meditation app for learning and practising breathing techniques.

It has a user-friendly interface with a calming layout that reflects the focus that people who mediate want to emulate. You will learn how to take breathing from a passive act, to a mindful act.

Smiling Mind

Smiling Mind is a meditation app developed by psychologists and educators, specifically for children aged 7 years old and up, in several daily routines like school, sports etc.

Although guided meditation uses technical jargon, the meditation lessons are simple and easy to follow.


Headspace has been heralded as the people’s choice in mindfulness and guided meditation.

The app guides listeners through eight supportive meditation techniques taken from Tibetan Buddhist and Burmese ancient tradition. All the guided meditations are narrated by Andy Puddicombe, a world-renowned writer and TV presenter, with expertise in mindfulness and meditation.

Picture: App Store

If you want to start your mental health journey towards a tranquil, clear mind, familiarising yourself with the basics of guided meditation, Headspace is ideal.

The success of the app has led to the development of an interactive Netflix series that personalises the listener’s experience according to their mindset or mood.

Read the latest issue of IOL Health digital magazine here.