As the global population enters its third week of self isolation the World Health Organization (WHO) recognises that stress and anxiety are likely to become increasingly serious issues and maintaining our mental health even more of a challenge.
Many apps offer different approaches to preserving our mental health – meditation, text therapy, chatbots – yet none have identified how tech can help with the best therapy of all; getting a call from a friend on a bad day. Soultime already offered meditations, music and sophisticated mood tracking but wanted to find a way to incorporate the kind of social support self-help groups have long provided using ‘sponsors’.
On 7th April, the Soultime app will launch a new AI-based functionality called ‘Soultime with Friends’. Soultime’s founder, Mark Wagner, started working with Artificial Intelligence more than 25 years ago and has now applied his expertise in pattern recognition to identifying significant changes in mood. The technology can detect the particular times in the day or week when you could really do with a call – a process on which Soultime has applied for a patent.
Understanding that many people find it hard to reach out and ask for help, the Soultime team recognised three priorities they needed to focus on; how to work out the days when you really need a call, who you’d want to hear from, and, perhaps most importantly, how to reach out when you don’t feel like it.
Actress, comedian and writer Miranda Hart says: ‘Well it certainly feels like the time for some Soultime and they do it beautifully. There’s always a time to listen to our soul, and ever more now. Soultime is a beautiful, unique way to meet our ever important core needs of connection and peace.’
Justin Welby, the Archbishop of Canterbury agrees: ‘Soultime is a wonderful app, it is a beautiful and quiet and accessible way of drawing close to God. I warmly recommend it.’
The team worked hard on making the app as simple and safe to use as possible. First Soultime encourages you to invite up to 5 close friends to be supporters. You are then asked to fill in the Soultime mood tracker as often as you like. When Soultime detects that you are not doing well, it sends a discrete message to your support network saying that now might be a good time to give you a call. It never discloses anything more than that, and it also gives you control if you decide you don’t want to send a message.
*** Image credit: Freepik