A tricky visual puzzle is doing the rounds online, and rumor has it that only the smartest 3 percent of social media users are able to spot the odd one out.
The puzzle, originally shared on Wake Up Your Mind, comprises three parts and gets progressively harder, testing both one’s observation skills and powers of concentration. If your instinct tells you that you might be good at this, then consider setting yourself an extra challenge: put 10 seconds on the clock for each round!
In this first round, take a look at the sea of white ampersands on a black background and see how quickly you can spot the odd one out. One character is different from the rest—can you find it?
In puzzle number two, the sea of ampersands is denser and deeper; how quickly can you locate the odd one out this time? Is the hidden character the same as before, or something different?
For the third and final puzzle, the ampersands have been swapped out for emojis; can you spot the odd one out? Remember to put 10 seconds on the clock if you want to challenge yourself, or if you’ve found the puzzles easy so far!
If you found the odd one out in all three puzzles, then give yourself a pat on the back and count yourself among the smartest puzzle aficionados on the internet! If you struggled to find the hidden characters, however, we’ve posted the solutions below. Practice makes perfect.
For anybody who spends a significant amount of time in front of a computer, it’s vital to take regular breaks from your work or study to challenge your brain in a different way. Consider sharing these puzzles with your colleagues or classmates and help them to power through the working day.
Here are the solutions!
Puzzle One: Solution
Puzzle Two: Solution
Puzzle Three: Solution
Puzzles are not just a fun way to break the monotony of a long stretch of work or study; taking a puzzle break can actually help improve your performance. According to the Oxford Royale Academy, there are numerous ways to boost your creative or academic output, and one of them is puzzling. Other tips for staying productive throughout the working day include the following:
Listen to good music: For many people, music without lyrics is the least distracting while still having the capacity to boost your mood and your motivation. Film soundtracks can be fun and rousing too and are long enough that you won’t waste time putting together a playlist instead of focusing on the task at hand.
Work in a new environment: As the old adage goes, “A change is as good as a rest,” and sometimes a change of scenery can work wonders for rejuvenating your morale.
Set yourself mini challenges: If work is becoming too monotonous, then inject a little frivolity into the proceedings. How many emails can you answer in 20 minutes? How quickly can you write a two-page summary for your boss? The adrenaline will keep your momentum going.
Take regular breaks: Reward yourself for good, productive output by planning short, fun breaks throughout the day. Perhaps line up an episode of your favorite TV show, arrange a catch-up with a friend, or take a walk around the block to breathe some fresh air into your lungs. Then, return to your desk with a fresh perspective.
Having fun and being productive go together like peanut butter and jelly; start with a puzzle!