In today’s world, everyone is desperate for ways to de-stress. The questions is: how?
According to recent studies, the answer may be as simple as logging onto your computer for a game of Tetris.
Indeed, it appears that repetitively fitting puzzle pieces into a larger block of squares isn’t the time suck you once thought. In fact, it can get you in the “flow”—and on the road to a more peaceful mindset.
“There are two elements that create flow,” professor Kate Sweeny told The National news website. Sweeny oversaw a University of California study about Tetris, published in 2018. “Firstly that the activity challenges us at the right level, so it doesn’t overwhelm us and doesn’t bore us. The other is to present us with goals and know where we are in terms of meeting them.” For many, Tetris meets these criteria.
Feeling such flow means forgetting your worries for the moment. Indeed, the University of California study found that [Tetris] could “reduce feelings of anxiety during periods of uncertainty,” notes The National.
It can also help players fight addictions. The reason is simple: “Craving involves imagining the experience of consuming a particular substance,” a professor involved in a 2014 university study told The National, “[but] it’s hard to imagine something vividly and play Tetris at the same time.”
Other studies have shown that the game can benefit those with Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome. Researchers have described it as a “cognitive therapeutic vaccine.”
Short of the other vaccine we’re all waiting for, game of Tetris anyone?