PDN Training Tour Instructor Jerah Hutchins discusses the role of time management in helping shooters become – and remain – committed to improving their personal-defense readiness.
FRONTLOAD YOUR TRAINING
Jerah has a companion video, Tips for New Gun Owners, that will be helpful if you’re getting started.
There is no magic formula for accelerated learning. You have to spend time with your defensive firearm in order to become proficient with it. Frontloading your training means that, similar to the way you studied at a trade school, university, or elsewhere to learn the skills and knowledge you now put to use at your job, you need to train with your firearm step by step.
Jerah suggests that in your first month as a new shooter, you take as many classes as you can. Other things in your life will have to be sacrificed for this, but it’s temporary. Is your safety more important than attending a few happy hours?
In that first month, make sure to take an introductory handgun training course, then a drawing from the holster class, plus get your permit to carry process started (depending on where you live). This month is time and focus intensive as you gain a lot of knowledge.
After that initial intensive period, you can begin to space out the time you spend working with your firearm, into short increments every day or every other day. For example, every morning, Jerah straps on her holster and does dry-fire reps of drawing her handgun from the holster. This practice keeps her mindful and consistent. She spends 15 minutes per day working to keep consistent with her gun handling.
Shooting skills are perishable. If you take a basic handgun class and then don’t touch your handgun for three months, you will forget everything you learned.
If you have trouble with time management, numerous books on the topic can show you how to keep a calendar, how to buffer things in between appointments, how to make lists of things to do and do them, and how to work in a new activity such as firearms practice with your existing schedule.
In addition, Jerah has other suggestions for increasing your defensive readiness and incorporating that into everything else in your life.