Puzzles – crosswords, Sudoku, logic puzzles, disentanglement puzzles, jigsaws, the Rubik’s cube.
They require mental agility, problem solving skills, and provide you with a new challenge to get better at.
Well guess what? It doesn’t just stop at getting better at puzzles – it translates into mental development, and every sector of your life. While not something we commonly refer to as a manly pastime, this is one of a number of hobbies that help promote overall growth as a man. And because we’re big fans of expanding your mind, capabilities, and skill set, we’re big fans of this and other non-traditional manly hobbies (think of things like gardening or sewing).
Let’s go over why you should make time to solve puzzles regularly.
We go to the gym to get stronger, improve our bodies, and relieve stress. This is accomplished through working your muscles until exhaustion, and distracting yourself from the outside world while you focus on your health. Then back to the grind it is, working, thinking, and giving the brain a rest every once in awhile.
Well what about training the mind as well? Think of puzzling like the gym for your mind. Your brain controls your muscles, so improving brain function could even benefit your workouts. With this new mental training, solve your work and life problems more efficiently with better solutions.
Have you ever been so immersed in something that you lost track of time, and all your other worries? Yeah well puzzling is kind of like that once you get into it. Solving a complex puzzle, whether it’s a Rubik’s or logic puzzle that you dive into can provide immense therapy.
Put those complications on hold while you refresh your mind and come back ready to conquer the problems you struggled with before. I find my most effective work sessions are around 45-60 minutes with a 5-10 minute break where I make coffee and solve a twisty puzzle like the 3x3x3 Rubik’s cube once or twice.
When’s the last time you put your smartphone down? Didn’t go on the computer? Puzzles are REAL and can give you an escape from the dreaded 24/7 screen syndrome. Exposing yourself to blue light (yeah the kind that comes from the screen you’re staring at right now) before you sleep can cause restlessness and trouble falling asleep. My favorite times to puzzle are first thing in the morning to clear my mind and prepare myself for the day, in between work sessions, and before bed. Escape the technology-lock and refresh yourself – it’s a treat.
Thinking deeply about a solution, looking for the right piece, finding a new way to solve the cube will all improve your concentration skills. Guess what’s required to excel in any form of work? Concentration.
Work on concentrating for longer each time you solve puzzles and while working you may be able to concentrate harder, work longer, and be more efficient.
If you’ve ever lost a family member to a disease like Alzheimer’s, you know how absolutely terrible it is – don’t be that person to your family. Studies by the Alzheimer’s society of Canada do show that solving puzzles regularly can reduce your risk of Alzheimer’s and other mental diseases including dementia.
Puzzles like cubing or jigsaws give you a unique approach to training spatial awareness. If your job, or even hobbies require spatial skills then solving puzzles that improve that area of your brain can help hone your skills.
Overall, puzzles give you a unique approach to training a wide variety of mental skills including concentration, problem solving, spatial awareness, competitiveness, and they can even give you a new hobby if you got into something like speedcubing. As a man, entrepreneur, employee, think of solving puzzles kind of like reading. The one thing everyone should do except that puzzling is actually fun!
Relieve stress, strengthen your mind, hone your work skills, and become more successful by solving any puzzle of your choice on a regular basis.
Learn more about the author of this article at PuzzleDude.com.