We're never hearing the end of how technology is ruining our lives.
But while it's undeniable we're slaves our smartphone overlords, it's also true that we can use them to our advantage in the battle for self-improvement.
Try these downloads to help you run faster, lose weight quicker and get off the cigarettes for good
1 | Nike +:
Train yourself to run faster and for longer with this very clever app from Nike. Using GPS, it creates a map of the distance you covered to review when you're done, which is colour-coded to show where you were strongest and weakest. Challenge yourself to beat your personal best and – if you're a proper show-off – connect it to your Facebook app to receive 'cheers' through your headphones for every 'like' you receive.
2 | Sleep Cycle
Never get yanked awake to a honking alarm again. Not only does Sleep Cycle sense when you're in the lightest phase of slumber and wake you up with a gentle little tune, it also tracks the quality of your kip. A motion sensor lets it create graphs that show your sleep quality every morning, with weekly and monthly versions available so you can compare how you fare over time. Plus there's options to note if you drank coffee or had a stressful day, so you can check what habits are getting in the way of your eight hours.
£0.69, available on the Appstore
3 | Smoke Free
Nicotine-fiend? If your 2014 aim is to give up (for good, this time) then you need to download this. A massive incentive comes in the form of a display of how much money you've racked up by not buying cigarettes and how many days you've been fag-free, and the diary lets you track when your cravings hit, so you can identify your triggers.
Free, available on the Appstore
4 | My Fitness Pal
If you want to lose the paunch but manage you convince yourself that your lunch time burger joint run isn't doing too much damage, then this is the one for you. With a data base of over 3 million foods, you search for what you eat, when you eat, and see how many calories you get through each day. With a load of medical studies showing that shaping up happens a hell of a lot quicker when you record your diet, it's a simple way to get there quicker.
5 | Headspace
We know you're busy, and sitting in a room chanting 'ommm' for half an hour isn't a massively feasible regular activity. But the benefits of daily meditation have been picked up on by the great and powerful for a few years now, and those that are into it are evangelical about its results. Headspace is an app developed by former Buddhist monk Andy Puddicombe, which guides you through a ten minutes a day of breathing and mindfulness practice. It's not easy at first, but it only takes a few days to notice the effect on your stress levels.