Do you ever feel like you are never getting any better? You work and train and maybe have a set back or two but still feel like you are right where you were a day, week, month or even year ago? Well, I am here to tell you that your wrong. I know we might not have met and you may think I’m daft, but you are wrong. Your shooting is improving and I will tell you why.
- You want to do better! Being an adult has taught me a lot. One of the biggest things I have learned is you can’t make anyone do anything. You can’t make them love someone, eat their veggies or take better care of their finances. People will only improve by wanting to and it has to start with them. If you have wanted to be a better shooter for any period of time you are improving.
- You probably don’t track your scores- but if you did you would see improvement. For many years I did not keep formal track of my shooting. I just shot. I practiced with my grandfather and shot matches with him but other than hitting the target I didn’t keep any kind of records on what I was doing. Or so I thought.
In reality, I kept lots of records. When we would go shoot he would draw and I would draw. At first his draw was seconds faster than mine. His stages were tens of seconds faster than mine. For many years I didn’t beat him. If you looked at the numbers in simple ways like who won, you might feel you aren’t getting any better.
But, if you look closer you might see the changes. At first his stages were 10 seconds faster, then 9 then 7 then 4 and then we started tying.
Even if you don’t have a shooting partner you can keep track with, or even if you do, start a shooting journal. Pick a few drills: the IDPA classifier, a USPSA classifier, a made up something. Go to the range, shoot it, write down your time. In 6 months do it again. Are there differences? Even little differences are good. You aren’t going to eat that whole elephant in one bite.
- You are open to change and have changed something in your shooting. What is the definition of insanity? Doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. Since you are reading this the chances are pretty good you aren’t insane. If you are practicing and have ever tried anything different than when you first started you are a better shooter. You are getting better because you are refining what you do and improving skills that were once hard. Remember how difficult that first draw was. Now you do it without thinking.
It is easy sometimes to look at the big picture and say, “Nothing has changed I am still not doing X.” Well, you are wrong. You may not be doing X yet, but you are getting closer. Step a little closer to that picture, pull out the magnifying glass if needed :). You are a better shooter today than the first day, and the last week and last month. Plus, you are on your way to being an even better shooter tomorrow!