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Chess Not Checkers

Over the years, I’ve heard people say “It’s chess not checkers.” But (respectfully) I’m not fully convinced that many of them truly knew what that even meant or entailed.

Meaning, sadly, many have missed it, as society has taught us the ‘appearance’ of winning, yet failed to teach the ‘mindset’ of winning. It’s not just about “jumping”—because “jumping” without strategy could backfire.

Hence, why I absolutely cringe at many “New Year” resolution movements, as they tend to have the appearance of winning, yet lack the plan & strategy for sustaining that win (outwardly & inwardly)

Moreover, I’ve always marched to my own God-given beat—and danced to my own God-given rhythm. And, personally, it’s God, not luck. It’s purpose, not vanity. It’s a life long changing decision, not a “New Year” resolution. It’s impact, not acceptance. It’s God’s ultimate will & peace within—not the hamster wheel of the inconsistent societal expectations.

And just like Chess , life is about making strong decisions and sticking by them. It’s about tuning out all the outside pressures & distractions—and zooming in on your next God-led move.

And contrary to “social media” trendy beliefs…winning isn’t a destination, it’s a daily journey. And it looks ‘different’ for different folks.

All of that to say, if you are blessed to see 2023… focus on faith, purpose, sustainability, longevity, family, perseverance, community, healthy relationships, wholesomeness (mind, body and soul), and ultimately on your God-given “WHY.” Legacy is NOW. Not later.

Don't hop on a trend...make a lifelong decision to win (in every area of life) and stick with it.

Canena Adams, MA, BSW, SRAS

Communications Coordinator at

The University of Tennessee

Wife | Mother | Writer | Author | Public Speaker | Social Worker | Business Owner | Nonprofit Founder & Director | Sexual Risk Avoidance Specialist | Healthy Family & Relationship Advocate | Adjunct College Prof. | PhD Student

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