Being fairly new, a good number of my games are played with a handicap. I have found this to support and encourage a solid, slow, primarily defensive style of play, in which I am spending most of the game just defending my opening lead, and either being whittled down to dust if I am not successful, or winning mostly by virtue of my advantage. This has led to my offensive capabilities becoming woefully underdeveloped. I find that when I do make aggressive plays, more often than not it diminishes my advantage rather than advancing it.
I know that one natural solution is to play more even games, or handicap games where I am white, forcing the issue. But I’d love to hear any advice on offensive style, or engage a discussion of the principle distinctions between offensive and defensive play. In my case, I think some of it comes down to a weakness in life and death situations- and so more practice there. There seem always to be higher levels of thought about it, and if any float in your minds, I invite them here.