This is one of the hardest skills to acquire in chess.
In chess, the difference between knowing and understanding is as clear as night and day.
For example, you may know the 11th move in the Breyer Defence of the Ruy Lopez but understanding why the moves are played as they are is more important.
When starting out in chess (I still am by the way), I always try to incorporate understanding into my game play especially in opening theory and sometimes, I would try to formulate specific strategies and ideas into my game play.
Have a look at the position below. I arrived at this position in an online game with White to play (I am White).
Now White is an exchange up but Black can defend very resolutely. If you were White, what would you play?
Note that this puzzle has NO DEFINITE answer. The idea is to make you think of possible solutions and try to think of a coherent strategy.
I am always open to suggestions and criticisms so feel free to comment.
You can highlight below to see the move I played (which I will explain in my next blog post).
Note that I may be wrong and as I said, there are no sure-fire wins in this position.