Originally posted by bill718
I was an active OTB and Corrispondence player from 1980 to about 1996. .... I wonder...is there any way one can rekindle the passion one used to feel for chess? I've takes several vacations from chess over the last few years, thinking I was just a bit burnt out, but have been unable to sustain my interest for very long. Any ideas?.... 😕
I would like very much to take your inquiry seriously, and shall try to give a helpful reply....
"Chess, like love, like music, has the power to make men happy." -- Siegbert Tarrasch --
If you have ever truly known the passion of chess that, like music, can bring joy to your heart, then you can only be burnt out a little, fatigued a little, frustrated a little.... you haven't really "fallen out of love", you're just a little weary for some reason. The very fact that you *want* to increase your passion again seems to be proof that this could well be the case.
So what to do about it? Well maybe it is as simple as that you just need a break, a vacation, a little time away, which you should take without qualm or pang of conscience. Athletes in physical sports do not train and compete all the time, and especially not with the same intensity all the time; why should we be any different?
In addition to genuine and guilt-free time off, you might also consider changing your routine, much as sprinters log some long miles and distance runners also do sprints. If all you do is play chess, how about doing some actual study? Or maybe change to a different style of play? Or play different openings for a while?
Keep in mind that no changes you make need be in the least bit permanent; you're not bound to them in any way. The idea is only to refresh your outlook and take a different point of view for a while, and who knows where that might lead. With any luck you will simply refresh your heart for the game, or you might be lucky as I was and discover a whole new and joyful approach to the game.
As another possibility, I would suggest with all sincerity that you look into XiangQi, which is Chinese chess. The similarities are such that you can start getting into the game within minutes, and your skill set will transfer, yet the differences are so profound that you will be quickly aground and have the fascination of learning a new game. And odd as it may seem, XiangQi seems to actually be a very fine training ground for western chess -- by and large, Chinese masters of XiangQi who come to western chess do FAR better in that game than do masters of western chess who try to move to XiangQi.
regards and best wishes that you find what you seek,