Hi. My name is Tracey and I am a Sudoku-holic. I basically binge Sudoku – a lot over a couple of days and then I lay off for awhile. The binges are usually aligned with long car trips and late night movies with scenes I don’t care to watch closely (those epic battle scenes with flying body parts and gore). I have learned some great life lessons as I “ku” (a verb I have coined for the act of solving Sudoku puzzles – you may use it yourself; I only ask that you give me credit three times and then it’s yours).
First, take risks. I have learned this by solving the puzzles in ink. I used to use pencil, but where’s the danger and excitement in that? It usually works out okay, but on those rare occasions when I do have an error (gasp!) I have learned to get back at it and try again. Oh, the victory in finding the mistake and moving on to solving the puzzle! And when it looks like I have more than one error (multi-gasp!), I just trash the whole puzzle and start a new one. After all, it’s only paper, people!
Second, take a break. Ever have one of those puzzles (problems) where you feel that you have looked at all avenues yet you are at a standstill? You are frustrated, your eyes are crossed and your head is beginning to ache. You keep counting from 1 to 9 in any foreign language you know, as if that will help. Here’s the solution: slowly put the puzzle and writing instrument down and back away slowly. Go do something else. When you come back to it, you will not believe what you had missed before and will move on to solve the puzzle (problem). Can’t this be applied to many of those little irritating situations in life? Take a break…say a prayer…don’t rush it … and the right answer/decision/solution will appear.