Puzzle fanatics know that putting together puzzles requires focus and patience. Now medical studies have shown that assembling jigsaw puzzles can help prevent neurocognitive disorders and protect from cognitive aging. It’s true that putting together a puzzle is a simple and entertaining way to have fun, but it can be so much more.

I’ve long had a love for jigsaw puzzles and have realized that they are more than just a fun pastime. They help me on my spiritual journey by helping me slow down and be more mindful.

When I feel disconnected or like there is something missing from my life, I “close the gap” by remembering that God is present in every situation, even in that missing puzzle piece.

Here are three lessons I have learned from jigsaw puzzles:

1. Every Piece Is Important

I will never forget the Sunday when my minister handed out pieces of a jigsaw puzzle to each of us. He talked about how every piece is important. Have you ever tried to put together a puzzle only to discover a piece is missing? It doesn’t feel complete, even with the tiniest gap.

When I look at my own life, I can easily see God in the “good” pieces—my loved ones, my job, my writing. But is it also possible for me to see God in difficulties and challenges I have had to manage?

When I feel disconnected or like there is something missing from my life, I “close the gap” by remembering that God is present in every situation, even in that missing puzzle piece.

2. It’s Great Practice for Creating the Life You Want

I have always loved jigsaw puzzles as a metaphor for creating the life we want. You start with one clear image of what you desire and a pile of puzzle pieces that are meaningless individually. Holding the original vision in your mind, you slowly put all the pieces together until you have the exact picture you imagined.

Anyone who has ever used a vision board can tell you how beneficial it is to visually picture something you want to create day in and day out, and putting together a jigsaw puzzle is excellent practice. To put together the puzzle, you are required to reference the image (or the “big picture”) of what you are trying to create and be open to what shows up to fill each niche.

3. Putting a Puzzle Together Is Excellent for Mindfulness

You must be extremely present and mindful when assembling a puzzle. It can be a form of meditation, like adult coloring books, crocheting, painting, or even taking a walk. It can reduce stress and anxiety, especially because you are taking time away from screens and devices.

The next time you put a puzzle together, stop and center yourself before you begin. Take a moment to vision your puzzle time as a sacred time to become peace-filled. Then, bolster your centeredness by taking a deep breath each time you place a piece. This will ensure you leave your puzzling time with more mindfulness than when you began.

Add a Puzzle to Your Spiritual Tool Kit

You can find a jigsaw puzzle for virtually everything under the sun. You can put together jigsaw puzzles of beautiful nature scenes, inspiring quotes from spiritual teachers, or works from your favorite artists. There are even websites where you can create your own custom jigsaw puzzles with your own photos. Imagine creating a vision board, and then creating a puzzle from that vision board!

Check out the latest jigsaw puzzles from Unity.

About the Author

Sara Crawford is a digital content specialist at Unity World Headquarters. She is also a playwright and the author of Time After Time as well as The Muse Chronicles trilogy. For more information, please see saracrawford.net.

Sara Crawford


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