Always willing to test the best restaurants in town, last Thursday I went to Caramel, a newcomer in Nairobi’s restaurant front to just have a glimpse of the latest entrant to the city. I took two of my friends just to experience the coziness of the restaurant, which is being served by imported waiters and waitresses. Engrossed in a juicy football conversation (the upcoming Liverpool-Manchester United clash gave us some time to reflect about the two teams fighting for a Champions League spot), I noticed one of my friends, Idris Musa, unhappy.

First I thought it was because he is an Arsenal fan hence less ego-involved in the conversation. The journalism curiosity in me urged to ask him about his sadness. “It’s my boss again,” he uttered. “He is always on my neck with unrealistic deadlines.”

I then thought of seeking happiness and looking at the brighter side of the story. “Check your phone, there are some apps that will enable you think positively and give you the happiness you are missing.” Luckily Caramel has free Wi-Fi and Musa was on the App Store, downloading the Apps.

In the advent of smartphones, app manufacturers are thinking of how they can cash on this and that explains why our phones are loaded with many Apps and you only need Wi-Fi or data bundle to enjoy their benefits. Positive Thinking, an App from, is one of the verve-giving Apps that is available free on iOS.

Adopting the use of colourful imagery, Positive Thinking comprises numerous motivational quotes and suggestions on everything. You can set a motivational notification to pop on your screen at certain times. It will also give you suggestions from ‘stop thinking’ to ‘do sports.’

Its Android format by Juniper Islet is an improved version of the one found on iOS as this allows you to archive your own motivational quotes to the widget and you can read them when you need some soul without even opening the App. Those seeking to improve their confidence or weighing at possible alternatives,

Happify comes in handy. The vibe app asks a user thought-provoking questions about life and your goals in using the app. Once you respond, the app can detect your problems and recommend some ‘tracks’ for you and within a few taps you’ve begun enjoying the beauty of thinking.

The tracks contain quizzes, games and activities that provide you with a positive scope about your life. A good example is the game track that provokes your mind to look for positive words in a game when you lose some points by clicking on the negative words.

Happify will also give you suggestions on how you can feel more positive by only changing your habits. This will help you think positively by assessing your happiness level. The community page in the app allows you to read other positive comments from other users as well as uploading your own. The only turnoff is that the app comes at a fee, costing around $13 (Kshs 1,200 per month) and it’s only available for iOS devices.

iMoodJournal is another iOS app that will cost you $2 (Kshs 190). Its suite of menus and text-entry controls allows the user to make a diary-style note in the app of when you’re feeling positive or not and also add a photo. After the entries accrue, the app generates graphical presentation that show your positivity over time. This is beneficial as one can plan to work on strategies that will improve your dull moments as displayed by the graph.

Another cool app that could help you track your moods is the T2 Mood Tracker that is available on all devices. It lets you enter your own parameters to measure on a sliding scale and eventually add customized sensations that are meaningful to fit your emotional state.

The Smiling Mind, a meditative approach app available free on iOS and Android-operated devices, is another app that lets you enter data on how you’re feeling using slide control parameters such as feeling ‘cold’ or ‘stormy. The app has different programmes that allows one to listen to meditation-like voice track that talks to you when in different moods.

There are so many apps available in our smart devices that can give you a positive leverage about life.


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