How Chess Changed My Life
Games occupied a big part of my life growing up and they are one of the reasons why I became who I am today. When I was still little, aside from playing different video games like Feeding Frenzy, Zuma, Plants vs. Zombies and many more, I was also into puzzle and board games.
One peaceful afternoon during my elementary days, as I was preparing to go to school for my afternoon class, I saw one of my uncles sitting under our Caimito tree in our backyard who looked like he was playing something (don’t get the wrong idea). I looked closer and I saw that he was playing something that looked like a board game with black and white pieces. I didn’t had much time back then to watch him play because I was getting late for school, however, at that very moment I felt that I found a game that interests me as much as the video games I played. I was so curious and distracted about the board game I saw that I even got scolded from our teacher for not paying attention during my afternoon class.
The moment I got home, I immediately went to my uncle and asked him about the board game he was playing. The game was called Chess. He saw that I was interested and explained to me the different chess pieces and how they move, and he also taught me how to play the game. My eyes were sparkling at that time as I was learning how to play chess.
Days later, I learned all the basics and I also formulated my very own strategy in order for me to beat my opponent. I became confident and I challenged my uncle that time and guess what? I won! Just kidding. Yea, I lost. But for me, it was not a complete loss on my part because I gained experience, and I was able to see some of my uncle’s moves and strategies. At that very point of my life, I lost the match, but at the same time, I felt inspired, so I stood back up and continued honing my skills.
Weeks passed; I challenged my uncle again for the nth time. It felt different that time because I think I was already on par with his skills. We were trading back and forth, continuously countering each other’s moves until I moved my Knight at a specific spot, cornering his King and Queen at the same time. And at that moment, we already knew what comes next, he looked at me and smiled, we both shouted at the same time, “Checkmate!” I was so proud, and he was also proud of me for getting better each day.
The following school year after that amazing moment, I decided to join the chess try-out in our school. I was nervous, but I held on and fortunately, I was able to join the team. During our trainings, I learned a lot from my coach as well as from my teammates. I don’t want to brag but I was able to beat my coach when I was in 4th grade. During the actual competition, I’m proud to say that I won my first match in a matter of seconds using the 4-moves technique.
The game chess shaped me who I am today, and it taught me a lot of things that I can apply with my daily life.
In a game of chess, nothing will happen unless you make a move. Similar to life, if you want to achieve your dreams, you have to do something. Don’t let dreams remain as dreams. Remember, hard work pays off.
The game chess has this “touch-move” rule where you as the player, who deliberately touched a chess piece, is required to move that specific piece. This rule literally taught me to think before doing an act. It also taught me to be careful and be kind to others all the time. As much as possible, I try to make sure that the words I say to someone will not mislead anything and will not hurt his/her feelings. When I am engaged with an argument with others, I try to remain calm because one wrong move will make the situation worse.
Playing chess requires a person to think critically and make sound decisions under pressure (especially if it’s a chess blitz). Since I played chess for a very long time during my elementary days, I was trained to analyze my moves as well my opponent’s moves. It even got to a point where I even tried to predict and visualize what the board looks like if I make a certain move. And since official matches are usually timed, I was also used to working under pressure.
When I entered college, those trainings became useful because I chose to enroll in a very difficult course, BS Accountancy. During my first year, I think my performance was great and I’m proud of my grades but still I struggled a lot because accountancy is a deadly course to take. Unfortunately, the covid-19 pandemic happened, and everything changed. It became harder to study but I am still holding on. I’m now in my third year and hopefully I’ll be able to get that CPA title soon.
Playing games are not just leisure activities for people to relax or to pass time. When we look deep enough, we are able to realize how these games can help us become better persons.
I like to take this opportunity also to thank @Eurydice for becoming my sponsor. Thank you for appreciating my works!
All photos are from google.