Using a mixture of desk and field research techniques, we developed an understanding of key groups and archetypes who engage in mindfulness, or are ‘mindfulness-adjacent.’ Across these groups, we built a robust understanding of people’s journeys towards, and into mindfulness, outlining what attracts them to mindfulness, where they enter the mindfulness space, and how their relationship with mindfulness evolves over time.
We were able to broadly map the typical life journeys these groups of mindfulness-engaged and mindfulness-adjacent people have, with focus on how they find out about, move towards, enter, and grow within the mindfulness space, as well as identifying the key drivers and pain points on these journeys.
While the research phase concluded with a large body of insight, there were key four learnings which emerged:
Meditation apps are an attractive entry point
Especially when approaching mindfulness after periods of self-help, mindfulness apps are the most accessible and attractive point of entry into meditation and the general mindfulness world. The ability to meditate in your pyjamas, without needing to emotionally open up to others, reinforces a much needed sense of safety and control.
Beyond the App
In many cases, at some point people find that meditation apps aren’t satisfying their needs, and start looking ‘beyond the app.’ Most commonly, this comes down to one or a mixture of three reasons; finishing, or exhausting the material in the app; concerns around their meditation technique; desire to share their experiences with peers.
The Leap of Faith
Moving from the security of meditating on your own, in the safety of your home (using apps), to meditating with strangers in an unfamiliar space (attending classes or retreats) is a huge leap, and little exists in-between to ease the journey.
Make other entry points attractive
While the most obvious opportunity is to try and facilitate the ‘leap of faith,’ another approach might be to focus on making other beachheads more attractive or accessible, by for instance, integrating them within contexts and spaces which people are already comfortable with.
Surrounding these four learnings, we developed a series of design opportunities, from which we developed, prototyped, and tested a series of product and service concepts for Mindfulness Everywhere.
The design opportunities and concepts which were outlined at the end of the project have been de-risked through a round of prototyping and testing, and are now being further explored. Beyond these specific concepts, we have also created a template for Mindfulness Everywhere to supplement their core products by building out more formal medium and long-term innovation cycles.
The body of knowledge generated throughout the research phase of the project has been assimilated into other parts of Mindfulness Everywhere’s business — new terms to describe concepts, challenges, pain points, or types of meditator introduced throughout the project have now been assimilated into the company’s shorthand.
Our emphasis on embedded learning throughout the project has affected Mindfulness Everywhere team’s way of working, introducing them to human-centric, systems-centric and futures oriented approaches to innovation.