Solving Puzzles In Your Library For Improved Mental Fitness

By Catherine Eagleson

Many people are struggling with the situation they currently find themselves that has been brought on by the pandemic.   Solving puzzles can help them to develop good coping strategies to combat this.  The perfect place to do this is your public library.

At a time where people around the world are having their movements severely restricted movement it is important to find activities to keep occupied when isolating at home. Solving a puzzle is a game that is educational, fun, engaging and beneficial to mental health. During these different and uncertain times, it provides a way to focus on something positive and wholesome. 

Puzzling is often seen as a solitary activity.  However, our technological age has changed all that.  It allows us to be much more innovative with our devices and online platforms.  Staying connected is the most important thing during these challenging times.  You may not be able to meet face to face, but it is perfectly feasible catch up with friends to solve puzzles.  You do not even have to be in the same room.  In fact, depending on the time-zones, you can be in different states or countries.  All you need is the Zoom Room.  

Solving puzzles together promotes health, wellbeing, and resilience.

At a time where we are all staying home far more than we used to, keeping connected with our friends has never been more important. Research shows that 3 in 4 people with a mental illness develop symptoms before the age of 25.  Forming an online puzzling club is a great way to stay connected, help reduce anxiety, as well as foster learning and social interaction. A puzzling session can be set up via Zoom.  Puzzles are enjoyable, stress-free, and non-threatening activities.  They allow puzzlers to engage with their friends and let their brain focus on something helpful and wholesome. If they tend to suffer from mental health issues, it is vital they keep important people around them currently. Regular puzzling sessions can be something they can look forward to and provide a strong coping strategy for the times they know are difficult for them.  They will feel much better knowing that they have a plan in place to deal with it.

Online group puzzle solving maintains social interaction and boosts knowledge  

It is quite feasible to connect with friends to solve a puzzle in an online setting.  Your public library provides the ideal vehicle.  Puzzlers will be able to draw on their own general knowledge skills to help solve puzzles, which will give them a feeling of satisfaction.  In turn, they will also learn new words and facts. 

Solving puzzles provides the perfect coping mechanism

This is an anxious time for all of us.  It is easy to feel disconnected and isolated.  However, it will not last forever.  Keeping in touch over an engaging puzzle is the ideal activity to keep the problem at bay.  So, grab those cups of coffee and enjoy a puzzling session with friends and/or family.  Use these challenging times to develop a love of lifelong learning that will stand you in good stead.


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