The internet is a black hole and one we must frequently pry ourselves from. With constant connectivity, a 24-hour news cycle, social media doubling as a personal brand broadcast platform and the jitteriness that accompanies it all, the Aloe self-care app might just make looking after yourself easier. Aloe is quite straightforward. Users set reminders to do the little things they should be doing: drink water, take a break, sleep, take medicine, or simply be kind. Maybe not everyone needs these reminders, but there are enough people out there—of all ages—who could benefit from this substantially. With additional features ranging from support group construction to petite journaling (where one answers three simple questions), Aloe builds an active relationship with users.
Amber Discko, founder of Femsplain, came up with the idea for Aloe following her time working on the Hillary Clinton campaign. She’s well aware of the stigma surrounding mental health. “When many people see the word ‘self-care’ they immediately get turned off or afraid,” she explains to CH. “That’s normal. Society has made it so that taking care of ourselves is seen to be lazy or selfish. People perceive this about millennials especially, since we’re the ones who have made the term popular.” She notes that the thought of ignoring self-care and self-improvement is not natural. Further, many people can agree that they’re most effective when feeling their best.
The reminder list upon which Aloe will be built received crowdsourced support when Discko circulated a survey online. But the internet is a place she’s trying to help people moderate. “Taking a break from social media is only a very recent thing people have needed to do,” she continues. “There is a hierarchy of needs here. We all need positive relationships, and to demonstrate compassion and kindness. We chose to include ‘be kind to someone’ as a task because it is one of those things we need to do in order to feel happy.” All tasks, which the user has complete autonomy over, fall under three umbrellas: emotional, mental and physical. And Discko’s inclusion of a community feature certainly feels like the right move to bolster commitments because talking about self-care helps make it more acceptable. Regardless of how organized any person can be and how well-ingrained they are in open, caring communities, a reminder to check-in with themselves never hurts.
A $25 pledge on Kickstarter will lead to beta access of the Aloe self-care app in January 2018, if it becomes fully funded.
Images courtesy of Aloe