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Why is the game of chess similar to life?

They say Playing chess teaches us lessons of life. I never understood this as a child or a teenager. But ever since I started teaching people how to play chess- it became clearer to me that there is a striking similarity between Chess and many aspects of life, I see players lose and win, I see them get disappointed and excited, disdains and come backs and these are few points that strike a chord. Read on...

1) Perseverance: Yes all games more or less need it but this quality will be required more than ever while playing chess. Chess requires a high attention span and focus and missing out on one good opportunity or failing to predict your opponents one strong attack can change the game for worse. A player just can’t afford to lose focus in chess even for a single move. Most of the time for amateurs losing a piece during a game will hamper their zeal and concentration , thinking more about how the mistake was made rather than planning the next strategy or predicting the next attack. Chess is a game where one good move can change the course of the game. Don’t focus on your losses , count your wins. The exact thing is true about your life !

2) You just cannot have a Plan A : Those of you who know how to play the game, already know that you have to keep changing your plans and strategies constantly while playing the game- there cannot be one single plan that you can execute seamlessly without any interruptions. Isn't this true about life? There will always be unexpected situations and turn around in your life and in order to succeed you have to overcome the interruption and identify the opportunity that is thrown along your way.

3) Bad or Good luck: Luck is a matter of preparation meeting opportunity. While some do debate about how luck also plays some role in chess, it’s mostly about how you make best of the current situation. I personally believe the same is true for life. Just play the game with the best moves and you will get the best !

4) Losing your Queen is not the end of the world: I know what you are thinking here but Queen in the chess game is not the only metaphoric to your partner. Take any important aspect of your life, be it, career, business, education- sometimes you feel lost if you have failed to achieve it– the feeling is similar to losing a Queen in chess. But Chess teaches us that you can still win the game without a Queen if you play your moves carefully and strategically. See, you are getting it !

5) Not losing the big picture : Well, most of us know, even if we haven’t played this game ever , that Check mating the opponent’s king is the goal to win the game. If you have done this, then all small losses during the game don’t count. You should not lose focus of the ultimate goal of your life, oops Chess ! See, how similar it is. In Chess, more often than not we get so busy chasing an enemy piece that we might lose the sight of a potential checkmate strategy that we are close to. What is your ultimate goal in life- don’t lose track of it. They rightly say “ Don’t lose a diamond while busy collecting the stones!” . It applies to Chess and life, doesn’t it ?

PS: Do you like to play chess? If you are a parent would you like your child to learn this game?


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