Over the last couple of days, I’ve been doing a bit of self-reflection. Amidst the thinking and introspection, one of the things that I realized was that I had a really inconsistent approach to my games. Although I didn’t realize it at the time, I often found myself trying to play a game for the heck of it or to try and fit in a quick win before I needed to do something else. Then, on the complete opposite end, there were times when I played games where time was not a factor and I could completely immerse myself in my games. As one might expect, this made a significant impact on the results of my games.
While time is clearly one of the aspects that impacted my games, I realized that more blame can be attributed to my attitude toward the games. After all, a number of my ranked games were played with the idea that, “I can beat stronger players in even games, so this game should take only a fraction of the time and energy.” Unbelievably cocky no? Way to completely overrate myself and not respect my opponents for the strength they possessed.
I’m sure I’ll write more on this in the future, but I think it’s important that you give every opponent the respect they deserve. Trying to complicate a game in order to utilize your strong reading abilities to win is very different from underestimating your opponent and expecting them to make poor decisions. After all, I think a lot of us can agree that losing a game because you underestimate your opponent feels pretty crappy.
So while I’ve been a little quiet in terms of playing games, it’s not because I’m taking a break from go; but I’ve decided that I want to give every game I play the attention that it deserves. I’ve been rather busy as of late, but I’m trying my best not to play a game just to satisfy an itch. After all, I want every game I play to be a game I am proud to call my own, regardless of whether I win or lose.