On a downward spiral and need help

I’ve played Go off and on for a few years. Whenever life gets in the way, it takes me a bit to find my way back to go consistently, which has stalled my progress.

I started playing again and after getting back into the swing of things, I’m on a horrible downward spiral. Losing games before they’ve even really begun and have seen my ranking sink horribly from 16k to 22k in a matter of days.

Looking for someone who can help me reset myself and get back on the proper path.


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I recommend Dwyrin’s “Back to basics” video series.

Listen to what he says, watch as he does it. Hear it while you are playing, and apply it.

It’s working for me :smiley:

@GreenAsJade Thank you! Is that on youtube?

Yep - here is the first one:

Note that Dwyrin was developing with this style of teaching from “the idea” - the first video is indeed his first attempt at it, and he refines it as he goes along. They definitely get “smoother” as you go along - in the first couple he’s still finding his feet on the topic, and justifying himself to the skeptical chat crowd.

But I think even the first ones are good and worthwhile. Each one has something to teach us :slight_smile:

Having watched most (all?) of them, and read the comments, a common response to Dwyrin winning while obeying his basic principles is “oh, but you Dwyrin can succeed this way because you have tons of experience and are phenomenal at reading. But I don’t have that experience and I’m no good at reading, so this won’t work for me”.

Even I felt like that at first.

What this fails to realise is that while it is true - Dwyrin can beat 1Dans doing this, and surely we can’t - it doesn’t detract from the usefulness of the teaching.

At our level of experience, if we apply what he’s teaching, we can do well against people with our level of expertise.

IE the idea is not to show that everyone can use basic principles of play to defeat 1Dans, even when you are DDK. The idea is to use basic principles to beat DDKs when you are DDKs.

Again, just from personal experience, I’ve found it very helpful in this respect.



I hear you, I hear you. I lost 5 straight and watch my play descend to amateur status overnight. Sadly I don’t learn well from the way video teaching is done these days, but here is a resource that includes some excellent printed material that’s allowing me to find my way again.

Sometimes you find the rut, but sometimes the rut finds you.


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Attitude and your approach to the game is very important. Are you really present when u play? Or are u slapping down stones with little regard?

I know playing online had instilled some bad habits in myself. I often play when tired or bored, I do not really concentrate, I lose, I play another, lose, get frustrated play another, lose .

When I play my best I find I am concentrating on the game, I am present. Winning or losing is less important than finding a good move.

Sometimes it is better to play fewer games but make them count!

And remember to enjoy the game!!!

If u wish a game let me know. : )


This is something i need to remind myself of more often!

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lol me too…

Thank you all for tips! Been checking out the back to basics playlist on YouTube and it’s really well put together.

And thank you for that document with the resources, been going back to basics with it.

@nghtstalker - you are right, my attitude was probably not focused enough. I was so worried about getting back into playing and then forgetting that it’s been a while which led to frustration over my current abilities. Sat down and played a game last night, and while I didn’t win, my focus was on playing my moves and reading out and overall was much more enjoyable. I’d certainly be up for a game!

Sometimes, during a downward spiral, rank can be distracting. In the push to improve our rank we push for a win. In the push for a win we focus too much on our opponent’s weak points. We try to kill rather than surround and we try to invade rather than reduce. In the process, we end up leaving ourselves exposed and taking risks we wouldn’t have taken on better days. Calmer opponents punish our frantic play and the situation gets worse.

Your rank is just a number. In a few weeks today’s number will mean nothing to you. It’s fundamentally unimportant. Just play, keep your stones connected and let go of the desire for a stronger rank. Right now it’s more important just to relax, find some peace of mind, and enjoy the game.


I am easy enough to find send me a request but no analyze feature pls… I was lucky enough to play with a friend at a coffee shop tonite. Played better than I often do here.

Keep on enjoying the game! I look forward to meeting over the GOBAN!

good advice for us all…

If you are truly 4d, you can’t be a very bad player. I can’t tell your rating from your profile. In any case, my advice would be:

  1. Play more games. You’ve only played 4 games here, if I read your profile correctly. Play unrated games if you keep losing, or play against one of the computer players.

  2. Analyze the results from each game, win or lose. See how you could have played better, or avoided disaster by staying connected. The OGS Analysis tool is wonderful.

  3. If you haven’t read any go books, buy some. I own 25 books and I feel that working through them helped me (I don’t have great ambitions for a better rating, just enjoy playing).

Sorry for my errors above–I replied to your first posting due to lack of time to read all.