50 life changing chess nuggets

THE GAME OF CHESS

After reading “Little Book of Chess Tips” by Peter French i sought my own interpretation of the same and how the rules can apply in our day to day lives. Enjoy………………………….

Things may not be as they seem!

  1. Pay close attention to every move your opponent makes – figure out the reason behind the step in life.
  2. When you see a good move, wait – look for a better one! – try to find the best move you can in every single position.
  3. Always have a plan in mind – what are you trying to achieve in a few years time.
  4. Remember value according to the type of position – strike where it hurts the most by optimising chances.
  5. Avoid repeating mistakes – analyse your games to understand better your opponent’s plans.
  6. Time is a vital element in chess – establish yourself in the strongest possible way using as few moves as possible.
  7. Control of the centre – everything flows from the heart, guard it with all your might.
  8. Never compromise or neglect your king – stick to what is most important and never derail.
  9. Know when to swap – difference between hoarding and spending relies on both timing and wisdom
  10. Weaken your opponents pawn formation – don’t miss an opportunity of tackling your problems and shuttering it’s structure.
  11. Consider the endgame – envision the end from the beginning.
  12. Concentrate all the time – remain frosty till victory is established at the very end of the game.
  13. If you are losing in the endgame, set stalemate traps – restrict your opponent as much as possible so as to increase chances of your victory.
  14. Be much more alert to your own attacking possibilities – be readier to defend against future threats or even to remove them completely.
  15. Relieve the pin/tie as soon as possible – be aware of any issues that may be tying you down as they narrow down your options to succeed.
  16. Moving to discover a threat from another piece – ensure you consider every potential move your opponent can make.
  17. All games are eventually decided by tactics – the most advantageous weapon that you can carry into a fight is tact.
  18. Always be on the lookout – search for indicators/red flags that may reduce your chances of winning or increase your opponents chances of losing.
  19. Reasons for making a sacrifice – be mindful in order to maximise your gains and limit your opponents options.
  20. Defend with the weakest available piece – wherever possible, use pawns to defend as much as possible.
  21. The knight is the weakest defensive piece – your game is as strong as your weakest link.
  22. Exploit overloaded pieces – read into your opponents game and take advantage of any mishaps.
  23. Don’t spend all your practice time learning opening theory – in any case, a thorough grasp of strategy and tactics is a far greater asset in the opening than mere book knowledge.
  24. When you are not sure of the best plan – improve the position of your worst placed piece.
  25. Balance pawn moves – thereby creating your opponents weakness that will be exploited later in the game.
  26. If your king is under attack – sometimes the best defence is to retreat and evaluate yourself, plan, strategize and come back with a better tactic.
  27. Never begin with insufficient material – the intensity of an attack should correlate with the resources available to execute the same.
  28. If your king is castled behind unmoved pawns – don’t put all your eggs in one basket in regards to defence.
  29. Look for the Greek gift sacrifice – sometimes death of a team member is necessary for the sake of the team’s survival.
  30. Look for opportunities – at times it may need you to make a calculated sacrificial tactical move that can win immediately.
  31. Never attack unless and until – only commence aggression when you have a tangible positional advantage.
  32. Do not attack on the flank unless – the centre should be strong, impenetrable and infallible.
  33. Spend time studying endgames – understanding the endgame makes the player more likely to win when the opportunity presents itself.
  34. Do not underestimate the king in the end game – do not hesitate to use your best resources at your disposal at the time when they can be fully optimised.
  35. The knight should stay as close to the king as possible – keep your priorities in life straight.
  36. Aim to exchange so that when the endgame is reached it is your opponent not you, who has the pawn – foresight is key.
  37. If you are defending the king against the king and pawn – strategy and tact is vital to draw the end game.
  38. When defending with a rook against pawns – sometimes you have to lose some to get some.
  39. To build batteries on files or diagonals – working together will yield a stronger result than the sum of its parts.
  40. Consider playing a system – the more things change, they more they stay the same.
  41. If winning beware of exchange into an opposite coloured bishop endgame – stay on your toes until the last victory whistle.
  42. Consider playing your opponent, not the board – assess as far as you can what type of problem you have and seek to frustrate it by all means necessary.
  43. Never neglect your control of the clock – it is essential to invest you time wisely, and conserve it for when you really need it.
  44. Don’t give checks for the sake of it – every resource should be used frugally in a nifty fashion.
  45. Do chess puzzles – always look for ways to expound your critical thinking ability.
  46. Use a good chess computer program – constantly seek to challenge yourself in order to grow.
  47. Do not fall into the habit – seek virtues rather than vices in all your deeds.
  48. Do not forget to look for traps – nothing is for free, always question and be suspicious.
  49. Play your best game all the time – let your lifestyle reflect your *A* game in all your endeavours.
  50. Remember that chess is a game – be generous to your opponent when you win, and never, ever be a bad loser. Play to win, play aggressively by all means, but treat your opponent with respect!

My favourite take away from this book is “The winner of the game is the player who makes the next – to – last mistake”

Do not be afraid to take risks even though they make your stomach churn – they may just be worth it!

Credit goes to the author of the ‘Little Book of Chess Tips’ by Peter French

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