Apps and digital tools for mental and physical health

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Downloadable apps:

SAM: Self help for Anxiety Management

  • An application to help users understand, track, and manage their anxiety. Developed in collaboration with a research team at the University of the West of England, Bristol, this app includes simple actions you can take in moments of anxiety  (“help for anxiety NOW”), information about how anxiety works, and mental and physical exercises for dealing with anxiety. It also allows you to make a chart of how often you have “worrying thoughts,” avoid things you fear, and have feelings of anxiety and tension, which lets you see patterns in what kinds of anxiety you have at what times.


  • This app encourages users to drink water by linking water to growing a cute digital plant: the more water you drink, the more your plant grows, and the healthier you are.

Mood Panda


Role-playing game that encourages players to complete tasks on real-life to-do lists and to form solid habits by rewarding them with coins and other “drops” like magical pets. In other words, Habitica gamifies your to-do list, making mundane tasks into fantasy quests. You can also join with a group of other people and take on quests like “defeating the Basi-list” together, and create challenges for real world tasks you want to complete as a group (for example, you might “challenge” your friends to write for 15 minutes every day).  (Also available as an app!)

Quantified Self:

  • Guide to self-tracking tools like Fitbit (includes mood trackers as well as physical health/fitness trackers).

Mental Illness Happy Hour:

  • “a weekly online podcast that interviews comedians, artists, friends, and the occasional doctor. Each episode explores mental illness, trauma, addiction and negative thinking.” Or, as Paul Gilmartin (podcast host) puts it, it’s a space to deal with “the battles in our heads.”

From Students to Scholars:

  • From their website: “From Students To Scholars is a podcast series that provides peer mentoring to Graduate Center doctoral students and helps them prepare for the careers to which they aspire. Each episode is themed and tackles specific aspects of graduate education, ranging from long-term planning and fieldwork to minority challenges. For each episode, we invite Level 3 students and/or alumnae to discuss the challenges, stories, and successes that they faced during their time here at the Graduate Center.”


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 Supported by the CUNY Doctoral Students Council.