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Re: Tips for controlling anger after losing in chess
Reply #16 - 10/31/16 at 20:43:57
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There's a saying that talks about the person who becomes violently angry is a person who has run out of ideas: Out of frustration, lacking any non-violent reaction, an angry person lashes out.

cyronix, I would suggest mentally going "outside of yourself" and describing what you did (and will do), not from your point of view, but from your friend, the outside viewing self, and responding that way.

Congratulations for developing a list of ideas for what you can do.  I hope you'll publish a list of what made sense to you, and how they worked.

Namaste
  

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Re: Tips for controlling anger after losing in chess
Reply #15 - 10/26/16 at 14:09:18
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As has been said many times by many: Chess does not build character so much as reveals it.
  
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Re: Tips for controlling anger after losing in chess
Reply #14 - 10/24/16 at 21:17:17
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VKap wrote on 10/24/16 at 19:54:09:
if i lose, i can storm away from the board without acknowledging my opponent.

Why storm off if you lose? To try to hurt your opponent off the board because you are helpless to hurt him on it? Insulting your opponent or storming off without acknowledgement (it comes to the same thing) only shows the whole world psychic weakness and sleazy manners. If you do that, you are almost sure, like von Bardeleben, to be laughed at by more than just your opponent after you have left--and deservedly so.

For myself, when I said "coldly leave the premises" that meant engaging in a handshake and all normal protocols, only with a reserved demeanor.

If my opponent has acted so very badly during a game that my dignity is involved I simply say I will not continue such a farce and resign immediately. I did this when an opponent in a blitz tournament tried moving fixed pieces around and brazenly lying about it. Self-respect is much more important than the outcome of the game; one owes it to one's self not to place one's self in such a position.

If you want to beat me like that, feel free. Some people are, to quote Beethoven, "sufficiently punished by being what they are."
« Last Edit: 10/25/16 at 14:17:15 by ReneDescartes »  
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Re: Tips for controlling anger after losing in chess
Reply #13 - 10/24/16 at 19:54:09
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OP this is the very reason i like to play with my opponents set.

So that if i lose, i can storm away from the board without acknowledging my opponent.
  
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Re: Tips for controlling anger after losing in chess
Reply #12 - 10/24/16 at 01:54:20
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Surely what follows is not for everyone, but in my case it helps. It's a special kind of meditation or relaxation training.

At first I do the basic relaxation.
When relaxed I start to question my Ego:
- What does hurt me really?

B.e. it is a behavior of the player. I drew against an IM and he was arrogant in the analysis.
- Whose problem is this?

If I think it is my problem I ask myself
- Why do I accept his/her behavior as my problem?

If I find it is something from myself, like the idea I have to play better the next question is
- Why can't I accept my actual strength/form?
- Will I feel better or worse, if I accept where I stand?
- What for can I use the energy behind my anger? What will really help?

I hope you get the idea. It doesn't help at once in my case. And I cannot say how much relaxation training must have been there. I started training with 15 and did do it sometimes and sometimes not. The questions help me to get really my point and not points I have taken from real or imaginary others (b.e. pleasing the comrades of my club).
  

Medical textbooks say I should be dead since April 2002.
Dum spiro spero. Smiley
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Re: Tips for controlling anger after losing in chess
Reply #11 - 10/22/16 at 19:05:58
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chk wrote on 10/19/16 at 10:57:11:
I realised that my opponent also made good efforts only with reverse timing (lost a pawn -> stubbornly hanging in there -> finally neutralising the pawn disadvantage => making the shot in the end). His psychology throughout the game would not have been good either, so that also adds to the effort. My whole point is in all times both opponents may feel justified in asking sth from their game, whether this is "I ought to have won this" or "I could have drawn this if I was getting a tiny break".

That is really excellent. The other player is a human being too, in the very same position as you.

I thought of another thing I do that helps. I try to imitate Karpov and immediately look toward the next move, the next game, the next match. I try to shift right away and think "ok, now let's try and see how I do." Sometimes you can trick yourself into not getting angry by simply removing the time in which you could be angry (i.e. the time when you're clinging to the last situation instead of preparing for the new one).

This can really work; I am speaking from experience.
  
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Re: Tips for controlling anger after losing in chess
Reply #10 - 10/19/16 at 18:32:32
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One of the problems with separating the ego from the equation is that emotions can be powerful allies, especially in a difficult fight. Emotions aren't always the enemy. It's ok to be so invested in the game that you feel like crying after a loss. That means you've put everything you could into the game!

But the hard part is controlling that emotion. There have been some excellent suggestions on how to control emotions. But we aren't machines. Don't try to play with no emotion at all. You won't succeed, and even if you did, you wouldn't play as well.

  
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Re: Tips for controlling anger after losing in chess
Reply #9 - 10/19/16 at 16:08:54
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Paddy wrote on 10/19/16 at 13:09:10:
I suggest that it's really important to try to "disconnect" one's self-esteem from one's chess results.

Feeling annoyed with oneself after messing up is natural - it's how one deals with that feeling that matters.


Suggested reading:"The Chimp Paradox" by Steve Peters


I agree with Paddy here. I'm usually playing similar or higher graded players, so can probably be a bit blazee (sp?) about whether i win or not. I think it more important for me to get positions on the board that i think i am good at, than simply win games. So, if i lose but either get a sharp, tactical game, or a chaotic mess i still tend to feel good about myself.

I also make it a point to congratulate anyone i lose to, regardless of how well either of us played, and to commiserate anyone i beat...i dont know if that helps keep me centred.
  

"As Mikhail Tal would say ' Let's have a bit of hooliganism! '"

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Re: Tips for controlling anger after losing in chess
Reply #8 - 10/19/16 at 13:09:10
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I suggest that it's really important to try to "disconnect" one's self-esteem from one's chess results.

Feeling annoyed with oneself after messing up is natural - it's how one deals with that feeling that matters.

"Chess is the struggle against error!" (GM Tartakower). There are only three results possible in a game of chess so one is bound to lose some games, whether through being outplayed or through one's own error(s), so unless a player can develop a stoical attitude, chess is going to be a recipe for unhappiness and depression.

"When I lose a game I feel pretty bad but I get over it because it's only a game and tomorrow you can set up the pieces and play again." (GM Joel Benjamin)

Suggested reading:"The Chimp Paradox" by Steve Peters
  
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Re: Tips for controlling anger after losing in chess
Reply #7 - 10/19/16 at 10:57:11
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Nice thoughts actually. I also believe that one has to put an effort to learn from his/her own mistakes, however overdoing it in this direction could cause your subconscious to interfere with your efforts in actually winning a game.

I have recently lost one of those "won" games. At one point it became equal but even then there was no signs of loss in sight. Still I lost it and it does happen to most. My initial thoughts were that all my good efforts (gaining a pawn -> gradually building an advantage -> converting => but in the end missing a tactical shot) were spoiled while my opponent was lucky to get a shot in the very end. After reflecting on this for a couple of days, I realised that my opponent also made good efforts only with reverse timing (lost a pawn -> stubbornly hanging in there -> finally neutralising the pawn disadvantage => making the shot in the end). His psychology throughout the game would not have been good either, so that also adds to the effort. My whole point is in all times both opponents may feel justified in asking sth from their game, whether this is "I ought to have won this" or "I could have drawn this if I was getting a tiny break".
  

"I play honestly and I play to win. If I lose, I take my medicine." - Bobby
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Re: Tips for controlling anger after losing in chess
Reply #6 - 10/19/16 at 04:33:27
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Ah, I'm not sure that these stories are helping the OP find ways to manage after losing. Shocked

The great principle is that time heals anger. In other words, you may suffer a strong feeling of humiliation and rage when losing, but it will pass, and that knowledge can help--as can the resolution at least to go into "manual override" and not say or do anything while you are in the grip of passion.

I would be lying if I said that I was not sometimes  angry after losing if my opponent did ungentlemanly things. But though I may have felt anger, I maintained control over my actions, usually just coldly leaving the premises.

Second, knowing that you behaved like an aristocrat even if you felt rage is some consolation. When Capablanca lost his title to Alekhine, he had to have been upset. But, asked about his loss, he said that it is difficult to play Alekhine, who is "worthy of any man's steel. If you don't believe me, try it." This is to his eternal credit.

Third, play in person, not on the internet. And for God's sake, turn off the ability of other players to talk to you if you do play on the internet; trolling is an avoidable source of anger.

Fourth, don't expect yourself to be able to blow an unsound opening or strategy off the board. In fact, such an effort induces stress that makes losing feel  humiliating and can actively interfere with your thinking. I approach these situations by trying to get a safe small advantage; if I happen to see a way to blow it away, that's just icing on the cake.

Fifth, don't rejoice just because you have a "won" game. I cultivate a certain paranoia from first to last move and assume that every situation is potentially dangerous. That way the sense of "I should have won this" is lessened (though I would be lying if I said that I don't suffer from it).

Sixth, remember that ratings are merely the record of recent results, not of ability. Fatigue, sleep loss, disturbance because of other problems in life--all play a role, reduce your current ability below its normal level, and are not a reflection of your character.

I also believe that players who take the attitude "I play against pieces," such as Gligoric, Rubinstein, Smyslov, and Fischer are generally less affected by anger at losing than players like Korchnoi who see themselves primarily in a psychological duel. Fischer, who sometimes had tears in his eyes when he lost, from what I have read never expressed rage at losing a game.

I also try to focus on my own craftsmanship whatever the opponent did. When I win or lose, I annotate the game (not blitz) and conclude by listing things I learned from the game. If I made a horrible mistake, I ask what circumstances contributed to it and what I could have done to avoid that. Then later I go through a catalog of my  mistakes and look for patterns. That way, at least a new mistake promises new information for the long-term enterprise of honing my craftsmanship, information for which I can be grateful.

I hope this helps some.
« Last Edit: 10/19/16 at 23:32:12 by ReneDescartes »  
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Re: Tips for controlling anger after losing in chess
Reply #5 - 10/17/16 at 13:14:39
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In Edinburgh around the year 2000 a player uppercuttedd the board.  his way of resigning in this game was to smash the pieces in all directions Smiley
  
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Re: Tips for controlling anger after losing in chess
Reply #4 - 10/14/16 at 11:55:18
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There have been quite few cases of people being murdered because of a game of chess over the years. I remember a case of Yugoslav blitz players in Paris many years ago, or more recently the case in Ireland involving an Italian.
  
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Re: Tips for controlling anger after losing in chess
Reply #3 - 10/12/16 at 09:32:37
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I have in the past year seen a master hammer the table with both hands and use the friendly f-word IIRC when he realized he was losing to a lower rating player. He then repeated both actions for effect. Quite unpleasant.
  
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Re: Tips for controlling anger after losing in chess
Reply #2 - 10/12/16 at 09:23:42
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Goodness knows - I've very, very rarely had anger from this sort of thing. Playing unusually awful chess is of course never fun.

Think I just don't care enough! Also a limited drive to win too mind Smiley
  
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