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Louis Buccino

Founder & Managing Member, Applicate LLC

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Everything I need to know to be successful in the game of life I learned from the game of chess.

This idea and resulting conversation are perhaps best explained by enumeration of generic chess playing principals, such as -


- There is a readily discernable cause and effect for everything (i.e. for every move I make)
- I have only so much time to make decisions and there are consequences to moving too quickly or too slowly
- Documented, transparent moves speak for themselves and no excuses are relevant (you cannot deny or debate the facts/moves which speak for themselves)
- The strongest force or approach is not necessarily the most desirable in all situations
- Positioning is everything and positions change constantly
- All action typically emanates from and is connected to the center
- Once the move/decision is made its difficult if not impossible to take it back
- The first mistake made, haven shaken the player, often results in another
- Winning is not a matter of having the most material things (more pieces)
- Sometimes the threat itself is actually stronger than its full execution
- Failure/defeat is often quite apparent if not inevitable before the very end
- Even a little, casual ill timed or ill advised mistake can undue vast preparations and seemingly invincible positions
- There is often a better alternative to the first impression, considering all alternatives
- Intuition is quite useful and essential but probably develops from principles and experience
- Preparation and homework usually pay off, all other things being equal
- A sound mind and game plan usually exist and propel from within a sound body
- Sometimes the best outcome is a draw, with both sides having made concessions and hoping for more the next time
- And the corollary: It's no fun to win all the time ...


Experienced and beginning players will have their own favorites to modify or add to this list; please feel free to send yours along or to contest those offered.

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    Oct 3 2011: 1. life is not a game

    2. if you learned everything from chess, i don't want to live your life.
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      Oct 4 2011: Thank God you said it. Life was given to us, one way or another, if you think of it as a game, you are doomed to be ruthless in what you take from others, and life will not give you ANYTHING in return. I suggest you (Louis Buccino) seriously reconsider the way you look at life.
      • Oct 4 2011: It is usefull to learn different ways to deal with situations in life where you need some kind of strategy esp. at work from chess.

        Now I also think that there is much more to the life? What about relationship with your friends, with your kids, helping others?

        In my mind, being successfull at work or materialisticly is less important than being good to others and helping where you can? =)
      • Oct 4 2011: I beg to differ - there is absolutely nothing ruthless about the game of chess (or others) - it is simply a contest and comparison of wills and ideas, neither good nor evil, just the pureness and simplicity of a voluntary competition governed by mutually agreed upon, objective and ultimately fair and equitable rules.
    • Oct 4 2011: Metaphorically, as is the genesis of this Conversation, any experience has elements of game theory, behavior and learning; this is also the essence of the nurture versus nature debate; and in any case, no one has asked or suggested that you live my life - that's neither the point nor relevant to nor in the spirit of the question.
    • Oct 4 2011: Metaphorically, as is the genesis of this Conversation, any experience has elements of game theory, behavior and learning; this is also the essence of the nurture versus nature debate; and in any case, no one has asked or suggested that you live my life - that's neither the point nor relevant to nor in the spirit of the question.
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        Oct 4 2011: I should not have been so harsh in the way I responded. Though I still don't agree with what you are suggesting, it is not for me to decide what is the right or wrong way to view life. I also have to admit you put alot of effort in the comparisons you have made leading to the discussion.

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