7 Things You Need To Know About Fidget Cubes For Stress
What’s the deal with fidget cubes? How are they different from fidget spinners? Believe it or not, fidget cubes are built around things we already do when nervous, anxious, or otherwise needing a calming routine.
Have you ever ever clicked a ballpoint pen over and over again, or tapped on a table repeatedly at work? This is because some people focus on tasks better if their hands are otherwise occupied. Such repetitive motions can calm stress and anxiety.
Fidget cubes provide a variety of ways for you to keep your hands busy with repetitive motions, without occupying your visual sense the way fidget spinners do. In this way, you can concentrate on your work while your hands are occupied.
According to Scientific American, fidget toys are not just a fad and they’re not going away any time soon. Read more about fidget cubes to see if they can help you or your child deal with stress and anxiety.
1. Where did fidget cubes come from?
The original fidget cube was the brainchild of two brothers, Matthew and Mark McLachlan. In 2016, they took their idea to Kickstarter to crowdfund the production. It ended up being one of the highest-funded campaigns — they originally were looking for $15,000 seed money and ended up with nearly $6.5 million.
Needless to say there are many different versions of fidget cubes around, but the original is this one by Antsy Labs. There are many different styles of fidget cubes available. They generally cost in the $8-$10 range.
2. What’s on a fidget cube?
There are six different types of fidget widgets, one on each side of the cube. They are named click, spin, roll, glide, breathe, and flip.
- The click side has five buttons, some louder than others, like the head of a ball point pen.
- The spin side is a disk that clicks as it spins.
- The roll side has two types of widgets: a trackball and some cylinders like a combination lock.
- The glide side is a game-style joystick.
- The flip side is like a light switch that rocks back and forth.
- The breathe side is simply an indentation, so you can rub it like a worry stone.
Basically, the six sides represent six different sensory options, combining sound and touch in familiar ways that are comforting and help to lower stress levels.
3. What does a fidget cube do?
It’s been described as a “baby toy for adults,” but it’s really more complex than that. Since there’s been an increase in diagnoses of anxiety and attention deficit disorder among adults, such devices can be of great use, especially when one works in a high stress environment.
Children use them as well to learn to control their fidgeting impulses, but some schools are banning the cubes because the clicking noises can be distracting to other children. You might want to keep that in mind if you work in a high traffic office where the sounds can be distracting to your co-workers.
4. Are there silent fidget cubes?
If you work in a packed office with an open floorplan, clicking and spinning may not be an ideal workplace item.
Some companies have come up with a silent version that has the same buttons, knobs and fiddly bits that the original cube does, only without the noise. Orisignall is a popular option if you’re looking for something on the quiet side.
5. Why buy a fidget cube when you can just use other things?
Why spend money on a fidget cube when you can just tap a pencil or roll a worry stone between your fingers?
Well, for one thing, desktop gadgets are everywhere. Some people build with magnets, some have a Newton’s cradle on their desk… everyone has some sort of coping mechanism at their desk.
If you’re on the phone a lot, you’re probably on hold a lot, too, so having a soothing repetitive motion toy at your fingertips makes the waiting less excruciating. And because fidget cubes are so popular now, they’re a must-have for the busy desk jockey.
6. Can you make a DIY fidget cube?
Sure, if that’s what you want to do! There are many good tutorials on Youtube for making your own fidget cube.
Here’s a clever way to build one yourself, using cardboard, with step by step instructions:
Or, if you have some spare Legos around, you can build yourself a cool fidget cube by following this tutorial:
But, since fidget cubes are relatively cheap and can be found everywhere, you might just be better off buying one rather than making one.
7. How do you pick the right fidget cube?
Remember, there are many cheap, breakable knockoff versions of fidget cubes available. Depending on the level of use, if you’re particularly fidgety and plan to use it frequently, you’ll want one that is built well.
There are so many moving parts to consider, even though they don’t actually do anything, they’ll do even less if it comes apart in your hands. Here is a good comparison guide of several manufacturers.
Above all, do not stress out trying to pick out a stress reducing gadget — that kind of defeats the purpose. Pick up a fidget cube today and enjoy your stress-free days!