A  couple years ago I did a speech for a graduation at CDI college comparing life to chess. I was reading it over and decided that it is still relevant to today.

Why do people quickly assume that the pawn is weakest piece in a chess game? Probably because at the start of the game, a pawn has no value. The word pawn literally means “foot soldier” or “peasant” in some languages. I don’t agree that she is the weakest piece on the board but I will say that she is ironically unique.

For those of you who don’t play chess, let me explain to you about the pawn piece and its role in the game. In chess, a pawn can only move one direction. Forward. It’s the only piece that can only move one way. Pawns only changes their coarse of direction when they are able to capture another piece. A capture is one square ahead to the left or right of the pawn -still moving forward NEVER looking back. Although many pawns are lost during the “big battle”, in the end game, even that one last pawn can make a big difference. Why? Because the pawn is the only piece that can promote itself to any other one.

Pawns face a competition within themselves. They have to help capture the opponents king and/or make it to the other end of the board to be promoted. Pawns often get in the way of other pieces and are sacrificed for the greater good of the game, however; a true chess player knows it’s important not to sacrifice all your pawns too early and/or all at once. How you arrange your pawns is crucial to the game.

A lot of work for the so called weakest link right?


Having said that, it is understandable why one would compare life to a game of chess. But to compare your life to this engrossing game, you have to know and accept yours. What position do you play? I think it’s fair to say that majority of us are all pawns looking for a promotion.

In life there are rarely any short cuts. Every move you make affects people around you whether its intentional or not. Work hard to survive and succeed in life regardless of what people may think. Pawns are the lower middle class and poor people of society. In Toronto, I believe that we all have the same shots at success whether we choose to believe it or not. The decisions we make today determine how far we will advance tomorrow.

There are so many resources in Toronto that people do not take advantage of (or take too much advantage of). Some of them are easier to get to then others, but they are there (that’s a whole other blog in itself).

Think before you make a move and never look back. Don’t run off course unless opportunity presents itself. When a pawn has been promoted it can no longer move like a pawn Life is a milestone of promotions. We may not all have been born first class, but that doesn’t mean that we cannot advance in our lives to become the person we want to be.

Experience is inevitable.