It’s that time of year again. A new year has begun. Some of us spend a little time to reflect on the year that has been. Most of us also think about ways to make this next year better. The practice of writing New Years Resolutions has been around for years. We think of changes, big or small, we can make in our lives.
Today’s post is about New Years Resolutions we can make as shooters and gun enthusiasts. These are just a few of many that we have brain-stormed. You may have a few of your own, but this is a good place to start. We limited this to only 10. There are many more we could add, but we wanted to keep it short. Take a look. Which ones will you consider doing? What other ones would you add?
- Write, email, call or even meet with your elected officials! This is without question the MOST important thing you can do right now as a gun owner and proponent of your 2nd Amendment Rights. In the wake of the Aurora Theater and Sandy Hook Elementary shootings last year, our rights are under attack now more than ever. Make sure you let your elected officials know that you do NOT support infringement on YOUR right to keep and bear arms! (link here to email them)
- Be more aware of your surroundings. Too many of us just go about our lives every day assuming nothing will ever happen. Just go to a mall and see how many people walk w/ their heads stuck in their smart phones. Better yet, see how many people in line at the coffee shop can’t wait even 2 minutes w/out posting on FB or checking email! Be more aware of your surroundings. Notice when people come into a room. Read the body language of others. Don’t be crazy about it. Just be more aware. (To learn more check out our Combat Mindset class)
- Get your concealed carry permit. For now, Colorado and many other states are ‘shall issue’ states. This means that we shall be issued a concealed carry permit if we are qualified. For many, the firearm is the best way to protect yourself. Martial arts and other hand-to-hand training is great. But it’s no match for a firearm. The firearm is the best way to defend yourself, your family, or others against: 1) a bigger/faster/stronger attacker, 2) a numerically superior force or 3) an armed attacker. But don’t just do the bare minimum. Take a concealed carry class that teaches you the legal aspect as well as the technical aspect. Find a class that allows you to practice shooting from either your concealed carry holster or even from your ‘pistol packing purse.’ (link to that concealed carry class here)
- Keep your firearms secure when not in use. As a gun owner, it is your responsibility to keep your firearms safe and secure when not in use. A large gun safe is perfect for keeping your guns out of the hands of others when you aren’t using them. But, they can be difficult to hide or place as well as access when/if necessary. Another great option is a quick access GunVault or similar product. These safes secure your firearm yet keep them at the ready in your home, office or even vehicle!
- Train more frequently and effectively with your firearm(s). Frequency is better than duration when it comes to firearms training. It is better to spend 30 minutes every 2 weeks than 3 hours once a year. Since time and money is at such a premium for ALL of us, it is important to also train effectively. Don’t just place your target out there at 10 yards and shoot 50 rounds at it and call it good. Train effectively. Practice the most often missed shots. Work drills that will make you better for self-defense situations. Use your time and money (and AMMO) more effectively! Anyone who has taken our Pistol Fundamentals Class knows what we are talking about.
- Carry your concealed firearm more frequently. We all get complacent. Sometimes it’s just a hassle to carry. We think it won’t happen today. Nothing is more ludicrous than thinking we’ll carry only when we think something is going to happen. If you think something is going to happen, then DON’T GO! (simple de-escalation). Things happen when we are NOT ready. So be prepared. Better to be annoyed w/ the gun than be mad at yourself for not having it. The best, most expensive firearm in your range bag is worthless if it’s in your range bag and you are not near it when the time comes. A smaller, easier to carry option with a good holster may not be as fast as your competition gun with competition holster, but you’ll carry it more often and thereby be more prepared!
- Become more informed on the issues. See #1. The argument is coming. We all know that it is. Our elected officials don’t think we need certain guns. Some of our friends and co-workers probably do to. Be prepared to politely and professionally state your opinion and back it up w/ facts. Have the courage to articulate your own convictions and beliefs. Being informed will also help you fight the stereotype that us gun owners are just ‘gun crazy hicks.’ Defy that stereotype. Be informed, be articulate and be prepared to help the uninformed see the truth! The media sure won’t!
- Buy some ammunition in bulk. No, not for ‘prepping’ or ‘zombie attacks’, but for training. Honestly, range owners LOVE it when you come in and buy 50 rounds at a time. It’s a LOT better for us, trust me. Too often, shooters think they don’t wan’t need that much ammo. But buying your own ammo in bulk can drastically lower your overall cost of firearms training. More importantly, you will be more inclined to practice more frequently (see #5). Buying ammo in bulk will make you a better shooter.
- Try some different shooting techniques and drills. If you have only taken our classes, please branch out and look at the techniques of others. Give them an honest assessment. See if some of what they preach will work for you. Combine things that work from others w/ things that work from us. Always make sure you know the background of the instructor. Not all instructors are as qualified as others. Make sure it’s simple, and repeatable under stressful situations. Make sure it’s combat proven or proven in self-defense situations and make sure the instructor “shows you and doesn’t just tell you.” We don’t claim to have a monopoly on all the best shooting techniques and training ideas. Far from it. That is why we bring together law enforcement, military, special ops and competitive shooters all into one curriculum. There are a LOT of other awesome instructors out there. Learn from them too! If you haven’t yet taken one of our firearms training classes, give it a try. Give us an honest assessment. Use what works for YOU!
- Buy an AR-15, while you can! Sadly, there is likely to be some infringement on your right to keep and bear arms. The first firearm to be affected will be the AR-15 platform rifle (see #1). It is demonized by those who aren’t informed (see #5). There are those that would say ‘good people don’t need these.’ Obviously, we couldn’t disagree more. We’ve posted many articles lately on this topic. But, if you have been waiting for the right time, that time may have passed. The prices are now HIGHER than ever. They will likely keep going up. If you’ve been waiting, don’ wait too long. You may not be able to at this time next year. Similarly, if you have been waiting to buy a semi-automatic pistol, DO IT NOW. Of course, if you’ve never owned either of these, you have LOTS of responsibilities as a new gun owner (safety, training, being informed, etc!)
These are just a few. We could come up w/ more. What do you think of these? Anything that you as a shooter, gun owner or enthusiast could embrace? Let us know. Happy New Year!