Small changes can lead to big results

When we think about progress, we often imagine how good it feels to achieve a long-term goal or experience a major breakthrough. These big wins are great—but they are relatively rare. The good news is that even small wins can boost inner work life tremendously. Many of the progress events our research participants reported represented only minor steps forward. Yet they often evoked outsize positive reactions. Consider this diary entry from a programmer in a high-tech company, which was accompanied by very positive self-ratings of her emotions, motivations, and perceptions that day: “I figured out why something was not working correctly. I felt relieved and happy because this was a minor milestone for me.”

Even small wins can boost inner work life tremendously. On the flip side, small losses or setbacks can have an extremely negative effect. And the work doesn’t need to involve curing cancer in order to be meaningful. It simply must matter to the person doing it.

One result of deepening your connection with beneficiaries may be that you learn things that aren’t necessarily what you wanted to hear. This is a positive outcome, and a great opportunity for growth. Really listening to the community you serve means being open to hearing how you may have missed the mark. That conversation is constructive, and a good indicator of trust. Welcome it, and implement changes based on what you learn.

Systematic practice and training are key to improving concealed carry effectiveness

Whether it is defense of yourself or your loved ones, learning the proper concealed carry skills are critical. After you complete your concealed carry training class, learn the basics of handguns and safety, and receive your License to Carry, it’s time to start mastering the skills of CCW. Anyone who relies on a handgun for self-defense is best served by mastering these essential skills of concealed carrying.

Effective concealed carry require practicing situational awareness. You need to be hyper aware of the people and places around you. For example, know escape routes. Be aware of physical threats around you. Note people, patterns, and objects that seem out of place. Good situational awareness skills have saved many lives.

One of the most important habits to develop when you concealed carry is a level of comfort with wearing your gun, holster, and gun belt. This comes only with practice. Wear your gear around the house until you hardly even know it is there. Putting on your firearm and holster first thing in the morning should feel as natural as pulling on your socks.

Establishing and adhering to personal training and practice goals

Now you have a clean slate to start building better habits that stick. It’s important to begin with the end in mind. Take a peek at the goals you’ve written down and think critically about how to achieve them. What specific steps do you need to take? What regular behaviors will help you achieve your goals? What constructive feedback have you received that you should implement? Write them all down. Just as when evaluating habits to eliminate, evaluate potential new habits by how they’ll benefit you long term.

It’s impossible to know what habits to implement if you haven’t identified your goals. Before you do anything else, get clear on those goals. What are you training for? What skills do you want to develop? Where do you want to end up? Physically jot down your goals — they’ll become the basis for your firearms training habits. It’s particularly helpful to have a dedicated notebook to keep track of training goals, habits, and progress, whether an actual notebook or in your favorite app.

This means that you must invest the most time practicing the skills you are most likely to use. It also means you must practice with the gear you will use in the environment you are likely to use the skill. Listen, the truth is that we all like to practice the stuff we are good at. And we also like to use the gear that is the easiest to do the best with on the range, which oftentimes is not the same gear you might carry daily. I have made this same mistake myself.


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