For the past two weeks, I’ve had to suffer through watching my dad and bae play chess. I’m talking bring out the glass set, downloading chess apps, all of that. Let me tell you, I fell asleep several times watching these games.

Now, I didn’t learn a ton of things, but I did pick up a few tricks here and there that actually benefit my life. Here’s what a figured out:


Strategy 1: You can’t play chess if you don’t pay attention. Be aware. 

Ladies and gents there are a million and a half snakes in the grass. I know this and you know this. I bet both of us learned the hard way too. I just won’t tell you how many times I learned this lesson. Ensure that you are always watching what’s going on around you. Don’t put yourself in positions where people can take advantage of you. I personally do this way too often. It’s like I want to be nice and believe the best in everyone to the point where it prohibits me from seeing someone’s actual agenda. Then when I do finally see it I’ve made myself too vulnerable to them and they’ve already taken advantage of my kindness or my openness.

Strategy 2: In chess, you want to watch who you have protecting the King, or in my case, Queen. 

You guys, birds of a feather flock, and club, and gossip, and cut up together. If Joe from down the road talks about his friend with you around, please believe that Joe talks about you as well. It’s awful to say, but you cannot trust everyone. Every person doesn’t have your best interest at heart. It doesn’t make them bad people, it just means you need to protect yourself. Think about it. Who’s around you when you’re feeling vulnerable or you’re at your lowest point? Are they building you up and being real with you, or taking advantage and telling your business? When you’re playing chess you don’t want to leave yourself surrounded by weak pieces, so don’t surround yourself with weak-minded people.

Strategy 3: Reflect on past moves, plan for future moves, and be present in the game.

Listen, pay attention to the mess you’ve already been through. What you’ve been through was strategically put into your life to teach you so that you DO NOT DO IT AGAIN. Stop thinking that the same situation will heed different results. Let me help you out right now, it won’t.

Secondly, plan for your future. I’m not talking heavy goals or a one track plan, but have some sort of end resulting goal and be okay with a little variation here and there. Just as long as you don’t compromise your end goal.

Lastly, and my favorite part, be present. Live in the now. My college years I spent a lot of time wanting to graduate. Now all I want to do is go back and take the time to live in the moment. So much of life is wasting by living in yesterday or waiting for tomorrow. Don’t wait! The now is where all of your serendipities are found, and you know I love me a good serendipity.

So, long story short here’s your three part challenge for the week:

1. Pay attention to what’s going on around you

2. Keep positive, empowering people in your circle

3. Reflect, plan, but be present as well

Go out and take your next step towards serendipity! You’ll be great!