Moodnotes - Thought Journal / Mood Diary ($3.99) by Thriveport, LLC is a new app that will help you keep track of your emotions and thoughts, and it will even offer advice on how you feel over time. The people behind the app are interesting too, as Thriveport has worked with a team of healthcare professionals, as well as the guys behind Monument Valley, in order to create this app. Think of it as something like Day One, except it is designed specifically for capturing moods.
We are all human, and as such, it’s only natural to be emotional. I’ll admit it — I can get pretty emotional over things, but I try my best to not show it too much. Of course, it’s never good to bottle things up inside either, as that can just lead to more issues down the road, or at least that’s what I’ve always believed. When I have strong feelings, I usually turn to friends and family to talk about things, but sometimes that isn’t what I want either, so I turn to journaling. Normally, I just open up my trusty Day One app and start writing, but when I saw Moodnotes on the App Store, I was intrigued. It surely seems like a better way to keep track of my emotions rather than by mixing them up with memories in Day One.
When I heard that the developers of Monument Valley contributed to this app, it was one of the biggest selling points for me. I love the design of Monument Valley, so I was pleased to see that Moodnotes looks pretty good too. The app itself is simple with a mix of white and creamy beige for the color theme, along with some teal and dark gold accents. I did think that using several different typefaces throughout various sections is a bit inconsistent, but I can live with it, because at least the fonts look good and are fairly readable. The icons used to represent each feeling is straightforward, and I found the app super intuitive to use.
By default, the main thing you see when the app is launched is the “Mood Notes” section. This will organize your entries chronologically by month and day in descending order. Each entry will display the timestamp and the first two lines of text, and the mood icon representing your feeling at the time is shown on the right column. Tapping on any entry lets you see it in full detail, including the feelings that you’ve selected and thoughts about it, as well as some general advice from the app before it prompts you about reassessing your emotions. If you decide you don’t want an entry anymore, just swipe left on it to bring up a contextual delete button.
To create a new entry, just tap on the plus button in the Mood Notes section. The first step is to swipe up or down on the face to find and select the mood that suits you, and then you have two options: Quick Save or Add Detail. Doing a Quick Save will just save the mood, but you won’t have any information about why you feel the way you do, though you can go back later. The Add Detail option lets you go in-depth with your feelings.
When adding details, the first thing Moodnotes will ask is “What’s happening at the moment?” This is just a description of what is happening right now that is contributing to your mood. Just think of it as a journal entry, and write whatever comes to your mind. After all, that’s what the app is — a thought journal and mood diary.
Once you’re done describing it, the next step is to select your feelings. These are split up into two categories: Positive and Negative. Generally speaking, you should be able to scroll through these lists and find what you are looking for, as they are basic emotions for anyone. However, I think it would be nice to include the option for custom feelings if there is something else that you think applies, but is not listed. Hopefully the developers can consider that in the future. As you select your feelings, you can adjust the intensity by dragging your finger horizontally across the bar. The default setting for each feeling you select is 50 percent.
After you pick out your feelings, Moodnotes lets you enrich the entry (if positive) with some journaling activities. These include things like talking about an act of kindness that you can do for someone, or reflect how you may benefit from such an action as well. For negative entries, Moodnotes offers Thoughts instead, which help you identify the “traps” that you may be falling into that cause you to feel down. Regardless of how you’re feeling, I found that Moodnotes helps develop different perspectives on your life, which can lead to more happiness and better well-being overall.
Another feature that Moodnotes offers is the “Moodtrends” section, which is accessed from the side panel menu. This gives users a line graph of the month and how many entries are associated with a particular mood. This gives insight on your thought patterns, which help you find out what triggers your emotions.
Since it can be hard to remember to record your mood on a regular basis, Moodnotes offers reminder notifications. You can choose to specific days and times to receive a reminder, but if not, the app will send an evening alert every two days. If you have an Apple Watch, there is a companion app for it that lets you add Quick Saves only.
While I’ve only been using Moodnotes for a few days now, I’m finding it to be a useful addition to my app collection. I go on emotional rollercoasters sometimes, so I see this app as something that can help me out a bit when I’m in a rough situation. It’s also interesting to see how my mood fluctuates on a regular basis, and the journaling activities are enriching. The only improvements I would like to see in the future is the option for custom feelings, auto-adjustment of feeling intensity (it should always equal 100 percent), and a passcode lock or Touch ID.
I recommend checking out Moodnotes if you want an app to help you track your feelings and thoughts while also offering ways of positive reinforcement. Moodnotes is $3.99 on the App Store and is for the iPhone only with a companion Apple Watch app.