Tuesday, June 4, 2013

How does tough open selection build mental strength?

Ref: Here.

I have said many times that mental strength trumps technical knowledge. And I have said that if you lose your self belief then all the technical in the world won't take you any further. And I have also said that building your self confidence is harder and more elusive than merely gaining technical knowledge. I have also talked about setting realistic goals within realistic time frames.

They are all connected.

But let us just focus on that decision by Nabila and Najiha for today. What has that achieved? We are seeing a lot of chatter about self destruction among certain players on our chess blogs. So why does this phenomena happen? Question. Would there be conflict in a young boy's mind if he is going out there and "knocking out" Super GM's and GM's like they were flies and then can't beat much much much lower rated players at home? What is the casualty in this dilemna? Is it not self confidence?

Also what happens when you have taken away the place of other players better than you? Do you not build up shame and guilt? Guilt some people try to explain away in very off hand ways?

Does this not affect mental strength? Doubt that you are not the strongest. Guilt because you have taken something that does not belong to you. How can that be resolved? Can you now escape into self delusion? And does self delusion help your chess?

But when you know you are the best. You have been tested in a tough and open selection and not found wanting, will you not go out with your head held high and with strong fighting spirit? Will the Malaysian team be stronger or weaker when every member of that team knows that every player there is the very best there is in the Country and no one is taking a free ride?

Can we think about this without over-reacting and freaking out? After all this is just a question; an idea. And we are a mental sport. Can we be strong in a mental sport if we are afraid of questions and ideas?

Another question if I may. Who do you think is responsible for taking away the self confidence of those players mentioned on the blogs? Who are the ones making up cheap excuses to remain relevant and continue representing the Country but cannot perform anymore and who are the ones facilitating the back doors with all sorts of devious ways?

Just another question for a mental sport.

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