Hello Chess^Summit fans!
My name is Xiao, and I’m glad you’re joining me on my first article with the team.
In this post, I’ll chat with you on my chess stories and how chess shaped me in many aspects outside of the game. Without further ado, let’s get started.
My Chess Beginnings
I learned chess in China when my mom brought home a chess board from work. And then I joined a chess club in kindergarten to get started in chess training.
My memories are fuzzy about the details of these chess days, but I do remember chess always brought more fun for me.
Losing in chess were not painful at all for me during this period.
One thing led to another, while in China, I joined a chess school, where my foundation was build.
I played in many tournaments in and out of my hometown Tianjin. Around third grade, I also worked with a chess trainer, who helped me further improve my chess fundamentals.
Losing now started to become annoying, but not much more than that.
Continuation of Chess in the U.S
In 2001, I came to U.S with my parents. And without much break, my parents found the Atlanta Chess Center after a month in Atlanta. My chess days in the U.S. started there. When you go thru my rating history, about 80% of my tournaments were played in the Atlanta Chess Center.
From 2001 to 2007, I played chess intensely, and really worked towards improving my game and rating.
I will talk about more about one of the painful games in my next post.
Going to College. Stopped Playing Chess
Before my senior year in high school, I decided to take a break from chess. Academics was a driver, my SAT was not good, and I haven’t taken any AP classes yet.
Another reason was my lack of tool set in terms of running the chess marathon. My psychology was reactive. I was chasing the destination instead of the journey.
The initial one year break, turned out to be over 7 years. I followed chess sparingly. However, my mind was unconsciously connecting the dots between chess emotions with everything outside of the game.
This period is when I started to think about psychology in and out of chess, and today it is still an interesting topic for me to pander.
My psychology to losing in anything become more robust. And I started to enjoy the process of running a marathon than crossing the finishing line.
Came Back to Teach Chess
I started working in 2014 and I learned the concept of side hustle during this time. I immediately found it enticing. Teaching chess was an easy choice, and it didn’t take long for me to get started.
When I teach chess classes, talking about chess concepts is certainly important, but I try to constantly relate to student’s chess emotions.
The vast amount of chess knowledge online has made information much easier to acquire. Simply type ‘chess’ in Google and you can get started.
However, building a strong emotional foundation in and out of chess is a more intense process. I’m still trying to figure out the route for myself, and I hope to share with the readers.
I’ll write about chess analysis from time to time. But I’d want to talk more about chess psychology in my posts at Chess^Summit.
Welcome to my Chess^Summit journey, and I hope you had enjoyed the first run so far!
See you in the next post!