Milestones in Chess and how to achieve them.

Milestones in ChessMilestones in Chess – a discussion. Rome was not built in a day. The same with Chess achievements – one brick at a time and the chess Mansion is built. We all know that going slow and steady is what it takes to reach a milestone. But what are the Milestones in Chess, the prerequisites and more importantly, how to sustain our motivation and achieve them eventually?

Some important milestones in chess are:

  1. Grandmaster Title
  2. International Master
  3. Fide Master Title
  4. Candidate master and
  5. Decent Fide Rating.

While striving to reach these milestones is desirable, understanding the way to approach these goals is essential, to make the journey smooth and enjoyable.


How do we reach (and cross) Milestones in Chess? What are the ingredients that make up for a successful accomplishment? How can we maintain the momentum that we had, when we first started?

What I really believe in, is the idea that a real journey is no different from a psychological one.  

Where there is fun, merriment and company and the journey becomes less tedious and less time consuming.

  1. So the first step is to make sure that you are passionate about this = Deeply passionate.

By that I mean that your whole day must be focused on this single passion. You can relax and must to but at the end of the day if you did not dwell in your pursuit of chess goals then it is not an earnest endeavor.

  1. Form a group that shares your passion = Together we win.

Join a club or make one if there is none!That way the energy levels will be sustained. Back in those days when I was an amateur I used to invite a lot of chess friends and they helped me when my energy was low, due to stress from other aspects. That was actually a boon for me as if I had not had these friends to push me up I would have quit and stagnated, resigning to my fate.

  1. Teach someone = Moral responsibility.

Yes… it may be strange to hear but teaching someone will give you a sense of what you have understood fully and what you have only a superficial understanding of. You will be morally responsible and that will bring sincerity to your efforts. I gained a lot by teaching some younger players a few things about chess training software and in return I was daily increasing my knowledge by conscious reinforcements and boosting my energy levels.

  1. Don’t be afraid to ask questions = Fearlessness.

Sometimes a stronger player will take the pains to teach you something ONLY if you bother to ask. Just try it. I have met quite a few good souls who later on turned out to be good friends in my chess journey!You can try it out in your club or during a tournament.

  1. Don’t be afraid of criticism = No Ego.

Sometimes players who are far younger than you will chide you for your game quality – take it in your stride. After all, that kid is giving you a free lesson! These nifty tips will be in your memory for a long time.

  1. Spend some time doing self-study = Gaining momentum.

That is the most important tip I cannot stress enough. Too many students of mine need to be weaned off the spoon feeding that they undergo as beginners. When they reach a certain level they must be forced to study on their own for sometime daily. This will give them a sense of achievement that will drive them to higher pursuits. A coach can only act as a battery charger. The ‘capacity of the battery’ is what you will be increasing by self study. Its your prerogative.

  1. Meditate daily. It is the hidden compass in your life that will constantly guide you on your path.
  1. Take a break, once a week.
  1. Exercise regularly. While everyone knows that exercise is a good idea, the scientific evidence about its benefits in the old age is there for all to see. Remember that Chess has to retirement age. So if you love chess you will be playing it for a long time to come and for that you need to be healthy.

I hope you liked this article. If you can do me a favor spread the word. Let us help the chess players who are struggling. I know because I was also once there in that plateau.

Editor’s picks for further reading:

Mind is much more powerful than you think 

Chess Informant – the esoteric art of learning chess – hacking your chess brain.

Empire Chess is offering a huge discount on digital and hard copies! Make sure you get the deals while they last.





  1. Hi,

    Thank you so much for this excellent website.
    The articles are also very good. I am looking at reaching all the milestones listed in this article. It would be great if you could please help me with the same.

    I am a FIDE rated chess player. Rating 1110. In the long run, I am looking at being a GM.

    Praveen Sadasivam
    Ph: +91 – 99 62 55 05 73

    • Thank you Praveen! Glad you liked it. Just follow the advice given in this page and the upcoming articles and you will be armed with the necessary info in the right direction.
      Wishing you all the best!


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