They say one can get wisdom from anything. From stones, people, experiences even games. Board games too? Possibly.

Chess in ancient game used to be played by kings.  Kings have gone and normal people like you and me play this game when they have ample time, or during lockdown like nowadays.

It is game representing a war yet when one of totally focused the game can be like meditation and takes you to a ‘State of Flow’, an experience when one of fully absorbed in what one is doing. More of flow can be read in the Book ‘Flow’ by Mihaly ( his surname can only be pronounced by spell bee winners). 

Some key learning’s I got while playing are written below:

– Focusing on the goal to checkmate king as early as possible gives better results than moving without purpose and waiting for the opponent to strike first.

– Sometimes small sacrifices are fine to achieve the bigger goal. Can be used also as distraction for the opponent . The big picture must always be prioritised.

– Planning moves is good but some of the best moves come into the mind just a moment before the move and could be different from what earlier planned. Do not be afraid to take this and play with open mind depending on current situation.

– Preparation before the match is equally important. Ensuring mind is both calm yet energised helps in playing better. Lethargy and distraction limits one’s performance.

Are these learning’s limited to chess? These could well be used in different situations in life. So keep playing and funding your own learning’s in any game of life you play.

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Kapil Nautiyal

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