The world’s most technologically advanced army equipped with everything known to man is still ineffective without good leadership. Good commanders are crucial to success. Poor leadership, inexperience, incompetence, or simple fear severely reduce the effectiveness of any military operation.
When talking about personal defense and concealed carry, the same holds true on a smaller scale.
Your body and weapons are the military and your mind is the general.
Is your general on point and ready for action?
Your mind requires training, just as our bodies do.
You know that regular, focused practice is important to keep and improve your shooting skills. You invest in professional training to better understand the complexities of personal defense. Improving your holster draw and accuracy is great, but there is still more to consider.
Your brain is an important piece of the puzzle and it is critical for a person to function as an effective whole. There are many hurdles to overcome in the mind. It can become crippled by fear, distracted by unnecessary stimuli, or even subject to depression and low moods.
Author Bruce N. Eimer, PH.D. wrote about these issues in his article “Managing Uncertainty Two: Five More Simple Solutions” on USConcealedcarry.com. Here is an excerpt:
“It is very important to view obsessions not as your enemies but rather as your brain’s unsuccessful attempts to control your underlying fear and anxiety about the unknown. Viewing obsessions in this new way allows you to change the way you think about this problem. Instead of fighting the obsessions by telling yourself to “stop obsessing” or “stop thinking this way, this is crazy,” you can begin to re-educate your brain to control the underlying anxiety in a new and more functional way. This redefinition of the problem is the key to the solution. (Read more about useful concealed carry tips here)”
Dr. Eimer goes on to explain that the human brain is re-trainable, and can think more effectively with regular conditioning. If you are able to identify the mind’s default defense mechanisms, you can then closely examine them to determine if they are causing hiccups in our overall defense strategy.
For example, it is common to obsess over what could happen. You could be the victims of a carjacking. Someone could mug you outside a restaurant at night. These things are all possible. However, stressing about them and over-thinking what might happen isn’t a useful way to spend your waking hours.
Sometimes these insecurities are rooted in our own lack of self-reliance. It’s possible you aren’t carrying your firearm everywhere we are allowed to. You might be getting lazy and leave your firearm at home or in the car. You might not be training enough and consequently, losing faith in your shooting skills.
The internal buildup of tension and stress can also cause mental obsession with what might happen. A good way to combat this is to incorporate regular stress-relieving activities in your life. These include daily physical exercise, regular target practice, and continuing education about concealed carry, whether through classes or simply reading.
As a final thought, if you are having trouble clearly identifying your thoughts and their usefulness, try writing them down. Make a bullet point list of the ideas your mind suggests and examine them on paper in front of you. Writing thoughts down has a power all its own, and will help you to clearly see what is helpful and what is harmful to your concealed carry lifestyle.