Hello, chess diagnostic here and welcome to complete chess strategy [part6] your thought process [I’m] really excited about the next two lessons because they really [tie] together all the previous lessons and information we learned so far As a recap we know from the previous lessons in the strategy course that in order to play chess well you have to know your Overall goal in order to be able to recognize the specific strategic elements in the position when we play a real game We go from General to specific [this] will be our main model when we start to build our comprehensive thought process [for] playing the game When a beginner asks what he should study you might hear many different responses of information to learn how to improve if he just starts amassing any and all information [are] trying to solve hundreds of tactical puzzles this is like learning calculus before doing basic addition the first and most important thing is to learn how to apply any Information you learn which basically means the thought process you use to select the move We know our thought process will go from General to specific from strategy tactics and this model strategy and tactics are not separating [confusing] elements of chess a Combined and one leads to or informs the other [it’s] not strategy verse tactics But strategy to tactics for example if we look at this position We could simply look for tactical shots, but in a game You don’t know you don’t know if there’s a tactical shot or if it’s a strategic position that you need to focus on maneuvering pieces so if you are guided by your overall strategic understanding in a game Then you’ll find both good positional moves as well as title opportunities Of course chest is a two-player game, and we need to consider the opponent’s possibilities as well The thought process [I] use is a four-part process That begins by finding and considering what the opponent plans to do? Then [I] go into the general strategic considerations to find possibilities for my move Once I have found possible moves that helped me with my overall goal of increasing [piece] activity I calculate the various moves using my visualization and tactical abilities to Determine the best line Once [I] make a decision on the move [I] will play [I] then spend a second to consider what my opponent might play in Reply? As you can see the thought process looks like this Two steps considering my opponents move and two steps finding my move based on my strategic and tactical understanding As you can see this framework of thinking is very simple and can incorporate all kinds of just knowledge that you learn The important point to make is it through this model You’ll be able to figure out what the worth of chess information is and how to apply it right away If you can’t find a way to incorporate it [that] maybe you can determine if learning certain chest information is a waste of time Now we will analyze the four-step process Which is basically a series of four? questions To pertaining to the opponent’s move into pertaining to our move that we can use to find the best move on the chessboard when playing A game the good thing is is that this thought process? Can be used to solve tactical puzzles as well to analyze games And [anytime] you train it [you] will improve your overall [chest] playing ability as well Step one Is basically asking what is the purpose of my opponents move and what does he plan to do next? By answering this question you will understand what your opponent is threatening? And you’ll be able to see what his plan is for future moves as well Once you have this information You will then move on to step two? Step two is basically focusing on asking the question. How can [I] move my pieces forward and attack the opponent? By answering this question [you’ll] be able to determine you can attack first which will increase your activity And push the opponent back or if you need to move on to the other strategic elements Maybe you need to increase your least active [piece] Maybe you need to centralize a piece or maybe you need to chase back the opponent’s piece Step three is the calculation aspect of our thought process now We will address tactics and a future 10-part tactical series to compliment this strategy course But in this aspect of our thought process basically the calculation aspect takes precedence after you use your strategic Understanding to find the best possible moves the calculation process You should use should be comprehensive and go through every single piece to make sure you don’t miss something So the process [I] use is to go from the piece of the highest value to the piece of the lowest value Going in the order of the king the queen The rook [the] Bishop the night and then the pond and what I do is From all the candidate moves I chose and step [two] from my strategic understanding I will look at all the possible checks captures and threats till the end of the line And then I will determine the best evaluation for each move and decide my move Now once I’ve decided my move in step 3 from my calculation I will move to step 4 and perform a simple Blender check So step four is the last step and the blender check is very important because it will prevent any mistakes you made in the previous steps And the only question you have to ask is what forcing replies can my opponent make after I have made my decided move As you know chess is not a simple or easy game to learn to play But blenders are a huge part of chess and even the strongest players in the world make blunders By simply following step 4 of this thought process [you] will reduce your simple blunders which will increase your playing strength exponentially As you can see from this lesson in previous lessons. [I] have not taught huge plot of chess information I’ve taught very simple rules and understanding you can follow getting better at chess is not just [a] massing lots of chess information, but reducing negatives such as blunders and Misunderstandings that you can play better Following this thought process will take practice In the next lesson we’re going to go through an entire game using this thought process To understand how to use it for an entire game, and we’ll go through a tactical puzzle as well So that you can understand how to apply it and use it to improve your chest your chest training Sessions will then not just become reading a book and amassing information But to improve the one thing that really matters which is your thought process you use to apply that information Follow along to the next lesson where we analyze the game and the tactical puzzle As well as leave a comment, and let me know what you think about the thought process And if you have used it to improve your game Thank you very much. Have a nice date


  1. If you would like to go deeper and work on your tactics with this method check out my 28 DAYS TO BETTER CHESS TACTICS series:

  2. Did you find that listing Steinitz's elements helped you expand your use of your activity based thought process or made you rigid? I notice you listed Laskers manual for the elements which was a pretty undogmatic journey as I recall. What are your thoughts on Nimzowitch's My System?

    —— I am really enjoying the tactics book you recommended and am memorizing the side variations to the fifth game I have memorized since taking your advice on chess improvement, and, combined with analyzing the mistakes in my own games, I am really enjoying the process. But strategic/positional book questions for the future (and from your past) pop into my head regularly.

  3. Thank you very much. I appreciate all your work. You are very Kind and mya God Bless your Soul and may you be successful in your endeavours. !

  4. Good lesson… I used an acronym for my kids 30 years ago… THOPD… Time, his, obvious, plan ,develop… not as good as yours and with some flaws, but it helped the kids improve. I’ve now returned to chess in my retirement and I’m glad I’ve found this .. Thx

  5. Andrew, this process is allmost perfect. I've compared this process with classical process "evaluation — candidates moves list — calculation — blundercheck — move". Pls explane me, when and in what step do you evaluating the position ?

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