“Numbers maniac.” “Puzzle fiend.” “Sudoku junkie.” Anyone who regularly completes Sudoku puzzles at work has heard at least one of these taunts from peers who simply don’t understand the burning desire to fill boxes with numbers at least once a day. Well, it turns out that Sudoku bullies are missing out on the serious benefits this simple logic game provides. The next time a co-worker leans over and laughs at your well-worn Sudoku books, you can tell them all about these outstanding reasons Sudoku makes you better.
1. They Get Quick Breaks Throughout the Day
Though they don’t quite look it, those tiny boxes filled with numbers provide an outstanding opportunity to escape. It is well-established that the brain needs disruptions from monotonous work every hour or so, and a Sudoku puzzle provides a small, stimulating break anywhere, anytime. In contrast, those who don’t play Sudoku may engage in less wholesome habits, like smoking or eating, during their rest periods, which may contribute to poor physical and mental health.
2. They Gain Self-Reliance and Self-Confidence
More than one person can work on a single Sudoku — but more often than not, it’s a one-player game. As a result, frequent Sudoku players must learn to trust their own skills, gaining confidence in their abilities to think quickly, logically, and decisively without reassurance from others.
3. They Filter Out Distraction
Like a basketball player on the free throw line or a surgeon in the emergency operating room, a Sudoku player is a master of ignoring commotion and focusing on the task in front of them. Because Sudoku is an inherently mental puzzle, players are unable to complete even a single quadrant when their attention is torn to other issues. Thus, it doesn’t take long for a Sudoku player to learn dedicated concentration.
4. They Meditate on Numbers
It isn’t a stretch to say that math doesn’t come easily to most people. Still, regardless of their academic background, most Sudoku players have a self-taught math skill due to their frequent exposure to the numbers of the puzzle. Math is useful across disciplines; even content creators need math to calculate the worth of views, clicks, shares, and more on social websites to make online marketing more potent. Therefore, Sudoku is akin to remedial math — wrapped in an engaging puzzle form.
5. They Practice Structure and Organization
A single Sudoku is rigidly organized, with small squares making up larger squares to form a unified box. Moreover, to complete the game, players must place numbers in order. The entire puzzle is based upon structure, and often spending so much time in a strictly planned environment allows Sudoku lovers to organize their real worlds, too.
6. They Silence Nagging Thoughts
During times of trouble (or just times of boredom) a person can be tormented with repetitive thoughts, like a catchy song playing on repeat or phrases of self-doubt. Fortunately, those who play Sudoku are able to banish such thoughts faster by focusing on a puzzle, according to a study from Western Washington University.
7. They Build Memory With Logic
Among aging adults, Alzheimer’s disease is a terrifying concern, but Sudoku lovers have nothing to fear. A study from University of California, Berkeley, found that Sudoku (as well as a number of other brain-stimulating games) could help thwart the development of mental disorders like Alzheimer’s and dementia when they are played consistently over a lifetime.
8. They Make Quick Decisions
In business, dallying over a decision is a recipe for failure, even if the right choice is made in the end. The modern world is fast-paced — which is ideal for decisive, clear-thinking Sudoku players. Hesitation is never rewarded in the game of Sudoku, so players must practice quick, resolute problem-solving which they can apply in the real world.
9. They Continue to Make Quick Decisions
Then again, a Sudoku player’s first instinct in the puzzle is rarely correct; still, a wrong answer is never a reason to give up. Sudoku lovers are nothing but dogged at locating mistakes and correcting them quickly, which gives them a further edge in the business world.
10. They Feel Accomplished
Fulfillment isn’t always about career or relationship success — sometimes it comes from the knowledge of a puzzle well-done. Completing one or more Sudoku puzzles every day leads to a sense of accomplishment and a persistent feeling of happiness that makes for a satisfied person more willing to engage in work and play.
Featured photo credit: rlmccutchan via flickr.com