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It’s been known for a long time that a little bit of mental exercise before work can improve productivity and general performance. It is an even better performance enhancer than incentive programs. These exercises can sharpen your mind, allowing you to focus better and memorize more accurately and quickly. They can even improve your mood.

Whether you’re a manager, a business owner, or an employee looking for a way to improve your working efficiency at the office, this article can help. Here is a definitive guide to brain games!

Why Are Brain Games So Important?

According to a licensed psychotherapist, brain games help improve your memory and creativity. As you play, new mental pathways are created in your brain, which allows it to work more efficiently and sharply. It’s similar to a muscle. The more you work it, the stronger and better it gets!

Brain games can also improve your alertness, which, in turn, improves your reaction time. This is especially helpful in sales or similar positions that require you to think on your feet. For example, if you’re cold-calling a client, you need to analyze conversational cues and develop a response quickly.

And, as we mentioned earlier, brain games can be a mood-booster. Exercising your brain means retaining more information and becoming more knowledgeable and proficient in your field of work. Proficiency equals confidence. And confidence can make you happier and more proactive at work.

Last but not least, brain games can alleviate boredom like any kind of game out there. Everyone has been bored at work before. When it strikes, your productivity sinks. By introducing an element of playfulness to work, you can keep your mind occupied and make work less dull.

All of these improvements are useful for your overall performance at work, no matter what field or industry you’re in!

There are health benefits associated with brain games, too. Researchers have found that if you were to make brain exercises a habit, they could slow down age-related cognitive decline.

Brain Games to Play to Improve Productivity

1. Crossword

Crossword is a classic game that probably everyone knows how to play.

But for the rare few who haven’t heard of it before, here’s the rule. You have a card with blank boxes arranged in horizontal, vertical, or diagonal lines. The objective is to fill these lines with suitable words or phrases. Each line is numbered. Underneath the card, you will find clues that will lead you to the answer.

Albeit the game is simple, it is super stimulating. According to one research , crossword puzzles can help preserve cognitive functions and stave off cognitive decline due to dementia. And for healthy people, it’s a great way to force your brain to think deeply and creatively to find the right answers.

Crossword puzzles can be easily found online. But you can even create them yourself with tools like Wordmint .

2. Riddles

You don’t need fancy mobile apps or boards to play riddles. Think of riddles and play with co-workers. A fun riddle or two are mentally engaging. They can be helpful if you’re working in a tedious or slow position. They can distract you from having to think about the monotony of the job.

There’s a time and place for playing, however. You should only do it when it’s a slow day at work or during breaks. Riddling your co-workers during busy times may get you in trouble.

3. Sudoku

Sudoku is a classic game that’s available both in pen-and-paper format as well as mobile apps. The objective is to fill a grid with numbers from 1 to 9. However, each number only appears once in a line, column, or box, so it’s not as straightforward as it may sound. To solve a sudoku puzzle, you need to concentrate and think critically. The heightened level of concentration and alertness that you’re in after solving a puzzle can transfer to your work, improving your efficiency.

4. Rubik’s Cube

A Rubik’s cube can be a good way to keep your mind sharp at the office during breaks or downtimes. Everybody has heard of this cube and probably solved (or attempted to solve) one before. But with over 43 quintillion possible solutions, this simple, multi-colored cube always has a challenge on offer for your brain.

5. Brain Training Apps

There are many brain training apps that you can download and play during breaks. Apps like Lumosity and Happify contain several kinds of mentally-stimulating games and puzzles designed to boost your problem-solving skills , memory, mental flexibility, and more. These apps are the ultimate way to train your brain and keep it sharp at work.

6. Chess

Chess is an ancient game, yet it’s still popular today for one reason: not many games require logic, strategic thinking, and concentration quite like it.

You can bring a chessboard to the office and invite a co-worker to play with you. Or, if that’s not an option, there are chess apps that you can download. With these apps, you can play against computers or real players, so your brain has no shortage of challenges if you decide to pick up chess.

There is much scientific research on the mental benefits of playing chess. Like crossword, chess is highly beneficial for the brain, enough that regular chess matches can slow down the progression of dementia.

7. Scrabble

Scrabble, like crossword puzzles, is a game that revolves around vocabulary. Since a game of Scrabble can span an entire dictionary, you’ll be able to improve your vocabulary and train your mind to recognize patterns better. Scrabble requires a high level of alertness, too. After a game of Scrabble, your brain will be quicker and more focused, which, in turn, will improve your performance.


Though playing games at work may sound like a bad thing, as you can see, if done right, it can greatly improve performance at work. Try some of these ideas out and see how efficient your work is going to be after a while. There should be a marked difference!

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