Most often, when we think about puzzles, or doing a puzzle specifically, we think of it as a hobby, or boring old way to pass the time. However, the truth is, that not only are puzzles a fun way to pass time, puzzles also have numerous health and well-being benefits many people don’t know of. Ranging from aiding young children in developing skills, through improving mood and memory, as well as preventing major illnesses commonly found in the elderly, and more. We’ve compiled a list of secret benefits that puzzles have on us, that many people don’t know about! So if you’re looking for a new, and healthy way to pass time and improve your well-being and brain capacity, read on!
Doing a puzzle is considered a full brain exercise, as it engages and implicates both hemispheres of the brain, the logical left side, and the creative right side. Puzzles engage your logical and observational skills, as well as your creativity and emotional aspects of your brain. It’s like a fully body workout, but on the brain.
When engaging in a puzzle, both sides of your brain communicate and collaborate to complete the puzzle. This increases your cognitive functions skills. Exercising the brain is a proven solution to preventing cognitive decline and loss of cognitive abilities.
Solving puzzles strengthens neural connections and increases the generation and creation of new connections. This process increases mental capability speeds and overall thought process speed. For example, when we pick up a piece, we quickly search among all the other colours, shapes, and sizes in front of us, and create a mental image, a visualization of what it should look like, and where the specific piece should fit, while doing a puzzle, you do this on a large scale to see the bigger picture. When you exercise the part of the brain in charge of storing this information, you are maintaining and improving your short-term memory.
When solving a puzzle, especially difficult ones with extremely similar pieces, it is critical to pay attention to details, no matter how big or small they may be. You subconsciously train your eyes and brain to find small differences in colors, shapes and sizes that will help you complete the image. The ability to capture small details and visualize where pieces of the puzzle are missing or could fit, increases our ability to catch small errors and details. This can be applied to workplace tasks and daily life. When we are more detail and precision oriented, our quality of work increases, in any aspect of life. And as all things in life, the more we do and practice these skills, the better we become at them.
If you’ve ever done a puzzle, especially more than one, you would realize that you must take different approaches to solve the problem. For example, sometimes you flip all the pieces upside right and start from the corners and build inwards, or top to bottom, bottom to top, right to left, or maybe you combine little sections and fragments of the centre and work outwards, or save those pieces for later…
The point being, you trial and error what works best. You also learn the value of formulating theories, testing hypotheses, and changing your perspectives when something doesn't go as planned. The more you do it, the better you become at it. These skills can easily be applied to your everyday life and workplace. Making you more innovating in problem solving, more critical thinking, and increasing your adaptive skills.
If you’re having trouble staying focused on your studies or work, you may want to consider taking a quick break to do a puzzle and reset your mind. Studies have shown that when you’re happier and less stressed, it becomes easier to focus, and when your concentration improves, productivity increases by a ton!
Many businesses and offices are beginning to include puzzles and similar games in their resting areas and staff lounges. These puzzles and games help employees disconnect from the stresses of work for a few minutes and engages their minds for a few minutes, so when they get back to work, their minds are refreshed and ready to tackle work again.
With all the other benefits we’ve described, and scientific research from the University of Michigan, it is proven that spending just 25 minutes a day solving puzzles and riddles, can raise your IQ by 4 points in general. And that is just on a base level! You can always further improve and develop your cognitive skills with the more difficult and practice puzzles you do.
So there you have it! Did you know that doing a puzzle for even just 25 minutes a day can increase your overall IQ by 4? Or about the other secret benefits working on puzzles can have? Now its easier than ever to improve your cognitive abilities! Get your own puzzle at Gabmit Games! Click Here!