Mental Pictures of Your Gunfights

I have suggested you practice presenting the pistol on target from a concealed holster using a four-step draw and pressing the trigger. When your mind says, “Draw and shoot” and that person is over arms length away you can do what you have practiced without any further thought. When your mind says, “Draw your pistol to the retention-position and shoot” because the person is within arms length you can go to step 2 of the draw, stop and shoot without thinking. If your mind says, “Draw to the ready-position” because you have no threat you could draw to step 3 while keep your finger off the trigger (used to search for a bad guy or in the rare case you want to display the pistol but not fire.) You will be able to do these subconsciously if you practice them individually. One method of drawing provides three different pistol positions depending on the circumstances. Your mind says draw this way and you do it without thinking because you have practiced each of them repetitively. The circumstances of the confrontation will dictate which step you stop the draw. Now you can practice each of them separately in your home practice routine.

A second suggestion was that you read, study and understand the laws of your state. That post talked about answering eight questions pertaining to force.

Mentally applying the eight questions in realistic situations and deciding what environmental circumstances or actions of the bad guy will mentally trigger a particular reaction are “What if” scenarios. You are making a generalized plan for a particular legal place or circumstance. I have a plan for inside and outside of my: home, car, work and public building. Most of the locations are similar but the mental triggers gets a different response depending on state law.

I suggest you go back through the eight questions and ask yourself what particular action would you need to see or hear from a bad guy to make yourself use the listed force.

That noise at night. That person yelling at you and clenching his fist while advancing towards you. That person approaching you at an inappropriate way, time or place. All the little things in life that lead a reasonable person to believe something is not right and something bad is about to happen are MENTAL TRIGGERS.

The properly trained mental trigger is what allows you to quickly decide and use an action subconsciously. When X happens do Y. It’s not always about drawing and shooting. The mental trigger might need you to: suppress your ego, go home, say your sorry, run, fight, talk, walk, move, pepper spray, club, shoot or one or more. We can practice using mental imagery by thinking of mental triggers and immediately seeing ourselves deploying the response appropriately. We know the law, we mentally envision deploying the lawful force. Of course we physically practice the responses at home, pistol range or gym.

While planning your “What if’s” think about the following:

1. Avoid false mental triggers. Are you really in a confrontation? Have you identified the person as a bad guy. Is the bump in the night really a family member. Is the person pointing a pistol in the store a robber or is she a citizen about to shoot a robber. Mistakes are your fault. You can only use the amount of force a reasonable person would use. This is why coming to the aid of someone else, while legal, is much more dangerous.

2. How can I conduct my life to avoid confrontations? Confrontation causes emotional and financial problems. Avoid it at the cost of ego. Don’t go to stupid places. Don’t associate with stupid people. Don’t do stupid things? If you cause the situation, any force used is usually held against you as a crime. i.e. you can’t start the fist fight and when it turns into a gunfight claim self-defense. It’s usually your fault.

3. How can I physically place myself to have an advantage if a confrontation occurs quickly. Such as where you sit in public, how you arrange your office at work, how you walk to/from your car to the building, how you answer the door, how accessible is my pistol or how you move before/as something happens.

We will discuss some situations in the future.




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