When things are not going your way in life it’s easy to get hypnotized by the chess board and sucked into a mesmerizing world of complex ideas in a effort to forget what’s really wrong. Surely you have a genuine interest in the game; maybe you’ve played it for quite some time, but mark my words–chess is bad therapy when you suck at it. Losing over and over again will compound negative thoughts and reinforce this idea that well… you’re a LOSER.
Don’t give up chess until all is well, just be aware of how much time you’re committing to the actual game. Devote equal or more time to studying the game. More importantly, find sports and games that will increase your odds of winning in a social environment. Bowling, pool, Scrabble, ping pong, whatever! Nothing will pick you up and motivate you to tackle your greatest problems like winning.
Chess is also poor therapy because it is a sedentary sport. Get moving. If you’re feeling down, be sure to get your exercise.
Schedule thirty minutes a day tackling your most difficult problems. Don’t sweep your problems under a chessboard and think all will be well when you make master.