My Chess Frustrations

Dec 13, 2007, 11:48 PM |

Frustrated, but not me.I love chess. I really, really do. But it is perhaps the most frustrating thing I have ever tried to learn. When I say learn I don't mean the rules and basic play; I've been playing since about age nine. I mean that I have had a desire to play at a high level for about 7 months now. I'm taking chess lessons from a guy in my area here who has some great credentials. I've had 2 lessons now and they have confirmed that I know I know what I know - if you get what I mean. We're going to get into tactics and openings more, so that will be better for me.

The frustration is that I cannot devote the amount of time needed to play at a high level. I want to play local tournaments and such, but I know at this stage in my development I will get crushed - and make Garry angry. Chess is such a demanding game if you want to be great. And I want to be great.

I hate losing. I think this is an advantage. You want to care about winning, and you want to hate losing. However, losing does not ruin my day. Now, my teacher would tell you that chess masters take losing very hard. Fine. I just have things in my life that outweigh chess.

My frustration is, I suppose, in the fact that it's going to take me time to be great. I feel I can be a very strong player with study and time. It's just the time part. It's frustrating to look at a position, think it through, think you have the right move, make it, and then find out when your opponent moves that you were blind. That is frustrating.

It's frustrating to see your rating inch up and then drop drastically.

All these frustrations add up to something I know about: nothing good is easy. I'm a pianist, worship leader, and multiple business owner, so I have work ethic. Now I have reached the decision that I want to take chess from a childhood hobby into an adult hobby and further into something competitive. Why? Am I a glutton for punishment? Am I a workaholic - well, I am busy, but I know how to unplug. Chess is unplugging for me, but I'm worried it's becoming an obsession...(cue scary music)

On a side note: one thing very appealing about chess to me is that so many people on different levels are involved in so many ways. On these forums you'll see people talking about specialized openings and famous player's and their theories, quoting algebraic notation left and right, talking about deep chess. You'll see others asking, "What does castle mean?" I love that. Members like Batgirl and BillWall blow my mind. That is what I aspire to be in chess. I love their intellect and more-than-general knowledge of the game. I want to play at the level where I crush everyone I play and humiliate them in a Fischer-like frenzy of forks and pins and discovered check. I want to see at least eight moves ahead by the end of June, 2008.

See, I may need psychological help.