If you’re in search of a way to reduce your stress levels, here’s why it might help to pick up a puzzle.

Whether it’s practising mindfulness, journalling, or taking a walk and being in nature, many of us turn to stress-relieving activities for a break from our busy lives. With research from healthcare brand Forth revealing that one in five UK adults feel stressed every day, it’s important that we make time for ourselves to de-stress and reset.

While we may commonly associate stress relief with exercise activities such as yoga and jogging (which, of course, offer a huge number of benefits), completing brainteasers can potentially alleviate stress, offering an entertaining and relaxing activity that can help boost our mood. Specialist healthcare agency Greenstaff Medical also reports on how crossword puzzles in particular can help lower stress levels.

“When thinking about how to reduce stress, puzzles might not be the first solution that comes to mind,” explains Shameem Begg, our Head of Promotions and Innovations. “However, the act of completing a puzzle creates a thought diversion, guiding the mind to focus only on the here and now. The problem-solving process is akin to that achieved through traditional mindfulness techniques used to help alleviate stress.”

A mug and crossword puzzle

Puzzle enthusiasts will likely already know how these types of activities can have a positive impact on their mental health. However, for newbies, Shameem has the following advice: “The most important thing is to pick a puzzle you enjoy. Regardless of the type of puzzle – be it crosswords, sudoku or wordsearches – their inherent nature means that the brain centres on just one task: piecing the puzzle together.”

In a world where we’re all busy with work, social lives and relationships, it’s important to make time for ourselves. So, it could be well worth picking up a puzzle the next time you’re looking for a moment to relax.

Read the full article over at Stylist for more information.

Plus, explore our fantastic range of puzzle magazines, products and free online puzzles for a stress-busting mood boost!




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