Originally posted by Eladar
It drives me nuts to even look at my horrible position. You know your position is really bad, but you continue to play anyhow. How can you do that? I'd go crazy or have a heart attack.
I think you're confusing two issues. One is playing in a bad position. The other is playing long games or playing time-consuming games. Unless, that is, you find that you get into bad positions so often that you prefer to play quickly, end that game, and start another one.
I suggest that by spending more time on the game, you will get into bad positions less often. If you get into a truly hopeless position, or one which saps your morale so badly that you would rather lose than play on, there is always resignation.
Chess can be approached as an exercise in puzzle solving. Spending time analyzing a position, playing with it and through it, can yield rewards by giving you better positions more of the time. It can also build mental stamina and improve your game skills. You might also try looking at the game more impersonally. Taking a philosophical approach won't ease the disappointment of poor play, and I don't advocate a lackadaisical attitude toward winning; but you can let failure motivate you and not regard every mistake as proof of your inferiority.
Are you responding negatively to the stress of trying to figure out what's going on and play a good move, or are you actually talking about the stress of playing from bad positions? If the former rather than the latter, you may want to try a different game since chess requires constant effort and decisions. If that wracks your nerves intolerably, instead of being a challenge that you enjoy more often than not, then why not try something else? Painting, or creative writing, or crosswords or sudoku: something noncompetitive.