Monday, March 04, 2013

The Chess Game

In Central Park in New York City there is a spot where people meet to play chess.  Several boards with several games are going at the peak times.  Here is the story of two such games side by side.
At one board is a player who contemplates his every move against every possible move his opponent could make in response.  It takes him hours to come up with his next move. He thinks and thinks knowing that the right combination of moves will end in victory for him, but he is afraid to make his next move because it may be the wrong one which would not lead to ultimate victory. Because of his method of considering every counter move he is a very slow player. 
At the other table is a player who looks at the pieces and makes the best move based upon the current standing of the board. He is a very fast player.
At the end of the day, the two different players have very different experiences.  The fast player has participated in 30 games and has won not quite half of them.  The slow player has played only two games during the same time period and won one and lost one.
Which one is the better player?  It is hard to tell based upon a day of playing.  However, the fast player has much more real time experience at playing than the slower chess player. The fast player has seen many more unexpected moves from his opponent and had to continually adjust his play.
The slower player did not make as many mistakes as the faster player, but by nature of sheer numbers, the slower player has not seen as many defensive strategies to play against.  If experience is the best teacher then the faster player has the best coach. 
A chess game begins with the first move.  If you don't move some piece on the board the game never begins.  You can be afraid of making a bad move, or you can make the best move you can at the time. The fear of a bad move will keep you from enjoying the game and the experience.  Making a move and constantly adjusting to try and make it better starts the game, provides experience, brings the joy of participation and eventually you learn how to play the game better.  
It is a metaphor for life. Make the first move and adjust as you need to with future moves.  If you sit around waiting for the perfect move you won't be participating, you will only be contemplating on the side line. The perfect move is always the best one in the moment, even if you plan years in advance.

As you were,

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