When I feel stressed or anxious about anything, I usually find that one of the best ways to help regulate my stress level and feel calm is to keep my brain busy. Some of the activities I find really effective for this are jigsaw puzzles, which I have explained before in the linked blog post, and also puzzles like suduko, word searches or even online games.

Playing games online on your phone or laptop can definitely be an effective stress reliever if you find the right game that keeps your attention. For me the key is finding games with the perfect balance of difficulty – too easy and it won’t keep your mind off your worries but too hard and it becomes frustrating.

A new website I came across where you can play many different games online for free is plays.org

Plays.org has over 100 games available on the website and they are regularly adding lots more, both for kids and adults. There are a variety of games including puzzle games, arcade classics and simulation games.

Puzzle games are definitely one of my favourites for stress relief, as they keep my brain busy and give a sense of satisfaction as you complete the challenges. The game below is hero rescue, which is a pin pull logic game. You need to pull the pins in the right order to save the princess, get the treasure, defeat the troll and more. If you pull in the wrong order, then maybe you will be engulfed with fire or have a rock land on you – but once you figure out each puzzle it works perfectly and you can complete the level.

The games are all free to play online within your browser, whether on your phone (as the screenshot above) or computer, with no adverts or downloads needed.

De-stressing and finding time to unwind is also super important for our kids, and my kids also share the online gaming passion.  They often choose to spend their free time in this way after school, and enjoy trying out new and different games.

Another of the games which caught my eye on plays.org was the corona virus hospital simulator game. I love simulation games, and this one would be an interesting option if you feel a lot of anxiety over the current pandemic situation then maybe it will help to play through it in game format and see yourself virtually beating the virus. I found it quite satisfying, clicking on all of the little virus icons as quickly as possible to defeat them and rushing your patients through the hospital as quickly as possible.

Whatever type of games or relaxation you prefer, it is so important to take the time to switch off from your worries and give yourself the space to regain some calm.