20 Feb Moving Through the Blacks and Whites – Life Lessons Through Chess
It is a board game.
It is an indoor game.
A checkered board in black and white, thirty-two pieces and two players – this is all it involves.
Yet, Chess teaches some of the most profound life lessons. The game is not as much about skill as it is about strategy. In every move, every thought process there is a careful analysis preceding it.
It is exactly the same way that life works!
A careful, measured step is what leads us to success; a mistake and we need to retract! If only we know how to play the game of life the chess-way, we can walk our way to success.
Use Your Grey to Manoeuvre Through the Blacks and Whites of Life
Life is all about situations – a few good, some bad.
It is theses blacks and whites that are arranged in the board-game called life! And the best way to move through these different situations is to use your grey –
Plan each step with care and the chances of being stuck are less. Think before you act and you minimize your chances of making a mistake. Like chess, your success depends much on how you use your thinking power to tackle situations.
It is all about moving on.
There is no way you can stay stuck. Tricky situations, set-backs, failed plans – all these are part of life just like the risk of losing your pieces to your opponent. There is only one choice you are offered – keep moving.
Just like chess, there may be situations when you may have to retract your steps, reorganize your thinking, and then make the next move. A bad move, a mistake is allowed but in no way can you stay static.
Chess and life are all about ‘moving on’.
Be Prepared – Always
Be prepared – to be caught unawares.
Be prepared – for loss.
Be prepared – to win.
In chess, often your well-thought-of moves don’t work. The carefully planned strategy may be check-mated by your opponent. And all you can do is to accept your failure with dignity. In the same way, a game you had never thought of winning may suddenly be in your favor.
Life can throw up unexpected situations.
Your carefully planned business may fail. The relationship which you had held on to for years may suddenly not work anymore. And a stranger you had met at the bus-stop may end up becoming your best friend.
Be prepared – to face every situation with the grace of acceptance.
You Opponent is Just a Co-player
This perhaps is a much-needed truth you need to accept and believe in. Life brings you across various types of people – family members, friends, colleagues. It is also possible that they are playing the same game that you are, in their own way.
In every workplace, there is this colleague who is vying for the same position that you are. You are trying your best to reach a certain level, so is he.
Strategically, he is your opponent.
But he is JUST your competitor – he is NOT your enemy!
Much of your workplace anxiety, your bitterness would reduce the moment you learn to accept this truth. Imagine what would have happened if every chess player had developed animosity with his opponent player! Every player knows that either of them would win.
They accept the outcome, shake hands, and move on – preparing themselves for the next game. Use the same thought-process and life will be less bitter and people would be more acceptable!
You Cannot Win a Match, You Cannot Quit the Game
Winning and losing is a part of chess.
You either win a game or lose it, but the outcome of a match is not the decisive factor. You do not give up on chess just because you lost a single game. You pick up your pieces and rearrange them for the next game. Then you refresh your strategy and play on.
Copy-Paste the same rule to life as well. You may or may not find success in every venture, every relationship, every planning. Pick your pieces, rearrange your dreams, and get ready for a new game. Do not give up on your dreams, on people. Play on with the hope that this could be a match-winning strategy.
Do not quit!
The best part about chess as a game is that there are endless possibilities of winning a game. You can have different alternative strategies to reach to your victory. The more alternatives you can think of the greater is the probability of you winning the game.
Life too is a game of permutation and a combination of different possibilities and alternative solutions. There can be multiple strategies – if one doesn’t work, try the other. If Plan A fails, there can always be a Plan B that works. Explore alternatives and you will be back in the game!
Learn to Win; Lose to Learn
No game of chess is ever won without learning about the game. Knowing the game, learning about it, building knowledge on it is vital. Unless you learn the game you can never win. Knowledge as the basis of empowerment works for life as well.
Learn from your education, from your experiences.
This will help you win in life as well. Learn from failure as well. Unless you lose a game of chess you will never learn where you can go wrong or which move doesn’t work. Only when you know what doesn’t work, will you be more clear about what works! Failure is a process of learning in life is crucial as well.
“A winner is just a loser who tried one more time.”
As you move your pieces through the black and white squares of the chess-board you learn little lessons of life. Chess teaches patience, it helps build resilience, it implants an attitude of never-giving-up.
Learn chess and learn to live life the chess way!