Even though most people will never be as good at Sudoku as Thomas Snyder, it’s interesting to look at some of the top personality traits of the greatest Sudoku players to see if we can emulate them – maybe if we can think more like the Sudoku champions, we can improve our Sudoku skills in the same way!
Here are a few typical personality traits of the best Sudoku players:
Orderly, Methodical Mind
Thomas Snyder is a scientist in his day job, and so it’s no surprise that he brings a rigorous, scientific process to solving Sudoku puzzles. The best Sudoku players know how to cut through the visual clutter of a Sudoku grid and start scanning immediately for the most valuable clues and information that they need – they know how to apply a process to the Sudoku grid where they can see which places are the most promising. They have a good visual memory that helps them remember which numbers are which. They seem to have a preternatural ability to scan, sort and analyze their options on the Sudoku grid at every moment.
Focus, Focus, Focus
Some of the best Sudoku players seem to be exceptionally good at “switching off their minds” to the outside world and being able to focus for hours on solving Sudoku puzzles. Sudoku is a game that requires concentration.
If you love the feeling of getting immersed in a Sudoku puzzle (or solving a series of Sudoku puzzles) to the point that you lose track of time, then you might have the intense focus that is common to excellent Sudoku players.
Cool Under Pressure
Sudoku competitions are tough – players have to compete against each other as well as against the clock. Solving the most high-level Sudoku players requires speed, quick decision-making, and an element of confidence and “guts.” The best Sudoku players are unflappable under pressure. Even if a puzzle is devilishly challenging, they stay calm and keep working through their analysis and doing what it takes to solve the puzzle.
Great Sudoku players are made, not born. Sure, it probably helps to have some sense of logic and deductive reasoning, and some people might have more of an innate ability in those areas than others – but if you want to be great at Sudoku, it’s not a matter simply of talent, it’s a matter of putting in the time and effort to develop your skills.
The best Sudoku players have taken a fun game and transformed their skills to a higher level. Whether or not we ever play at a Sudoku World Championship, this type of determination and diligence is admirable, and is something that we can try to emulate in other areas of life.
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