What has chess taught me?
Playing chess is a useful activity. The game resembles business and life in general. What can we learn from playing chess?
- It pays to have a goal; it’s worth focusing on the desired goal. If you play without a goal, you will lose more often. If you have a goal – let’s say you’re attacking the opponent’s weak pawn with everything you’ve got, or all your efforts are directed at attacking the king’s wing, you are more likely to succeed. And what’s more, you’ll have fun. Have a goal – any time and any place. Set yourself daily goals; set yourself goals for every project!
- You are most likely to make a fatal mistake – one which cannot be easily corrected, at the beginning! Like in a game of chess, if you play the opening badly, the initial mistakes and weaknesses will only show up at the agonizing end.
- The most important games are best played when you’re calm and relaxed.
- Do your homework. Basic moves, openings, endings, etc. simply must be learnt. Improvisation comes into play once the basics have been mastered.
- If you don’t have enough time to think it all through and calculate your moves, then go with your gut feeling. If you don’t do anything, you’ll lose, because you’ll run out of time.
- Underestimating the opponent is dangerous.
- Practice makes perfect.
- Without the help of a mentor, books, seminars, chess videos, etc. progress is (too) slow. Two games with an international master and a piece of his advice had an immediate effect on my progress in the game.
- Playing doesn’t necessarily mean getting better. The key is to analyze your own mistakes and learn from them. The best way is by enlisting the help of a mentor.
- Even the best pieces, if they are passive and badly placed, don’t mean a head start – the same goes for projects in companies, employees, other assets, etc.
- “It ain’t over till it’s over!” Even if you’re not very good – you can still win in the end. But you have to play with passion, have a goal, and believe in it. If you see that you are in a worse position and start playing without a plan and determination, you will most certainly lose. If you play, play 100% or else start a new game.