Sudoku and Life: Learning from the Game

They say that in every game there is a lesson, not just in how to play the game but in how to approach life. Sudoku, a numbers game is no different. Here too, there is a group of lessons that can be applied to every day life and how we should be living it.

1. Play – Sudoku is one of those games that refuse to be ignored. It lures you in and then doesn’t let go. It is fun and it is continuous fun. So the first lesson Sudoku teaches is to take the time to play.

2. Be consistent – To play Sudoku the player has to systematically go from cell to cell figuring out the possibilities. A player has to be consistent in the way that he or she plays in order to play the game. Be consistent in life and things will fall into place.

3. Think – Sudoku is a logic based game that requires that the player use local reasoning. Life is the same way. Use logical reasoning in your approach to life’s problems. There is always an answer.

4. Beware of illusions – Things are not always what they seem and Sudoku teaches this in the simplest of ways. This is not a game that requires math however it “looks” like it is a math inspired game. Things are not always what they seem to be.

5. Look ahead – In Sudoku part of the game is to try and determine where the future numbers will go. In life we should plan for the future and plan ahead so that the numbers will fall into place.

6. Remember where you came from – Backtracking is a huge part of the game of Sudoku. If you don’t know which numbers you have placed, you can’t move on. Life is the same way. If you don’t know where you have come from, you will not be able to determine where you are headed to.

7. Sometimes you have to scan the horizon – Scanning in Sudoku is done for a simple reason, you must know the lay of the land. In life you also have to “scan” before making a move so that you know what you are dealing with. In the simplest of terms, look before you leap.

8. Mark it up – Marking up in Sudoku is done so that you can leave yourself a path to know what to plan next. Life requires the same thing. Leave a path not only so that you can get back to a previous spot if you make a mistake but also for those who will follow.

9. Be persistent and don’t give up – Part of the appeal of Sudoku is that it is a challenge that many find impossible to put down however to discover the answer to a good Sudoku puzzle one can’t give up. This is life’s greatest lesson, don’t ever give up, there is a solution.

10. Don’t settle – Sudoku puzzles are designed to get harder and harder. This is done so that the player is challenged every time. Life is a challenge also and one should never just settle on what life has given them within a moment. Always strive for better in the world and in yourself.

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