Shooting Confidence for Survival

Annie’s Got A Gunshooting

Shooting guns used to scare me. I was never an anti-gun person, but because I didn’t have training, I assumed a gun would jump off of the table and hurt someone. The first time I ever handled a gun, it was awkward. I felt like I was handling a concrete brick while wearing mittens. My husband gave me a Sig Sauer P226 and I struggled. We later came to realize that because my hands are really small, my finger couldn’t press the trigger correctly! No wonder I was having problems shooting. Once I switched to a different pistol (my Springfield XD-9), it was instantly better.

Practice with Skilled Marksmen

Lucky for me, I married into a family who knows guns like I know fashion. Greg and his brothers, along with their dad, are expert marksmen. Their mom is a pretty damn good shot these days, too. They talk guns. They go to the shooting range…often. None of them simply rely on their military training. It’s been years of continued practice to become so proficient. You’ll find them at the range in three feet of snow and sub-zero temperatures.

Don’t Be Discouraged…

When I first went to a shooting range, in Idaho, I had a lot of good resources for instruction. Keep in mind; I didn’t know how to load a gun. I didn’t know how to put a bullet in a magazine. Again, think fumbling mitten hands… but I started to practice. I had never really held a handgun. I was introduced to an array of rifles with a million different names. I couldn’t hit a target, or anywhere near one. I also had the pleasure of having the scope of a rifle slam into my nose. It was frustrating and confusing. I wanted to leave.

Start with a Rifle

A few summers ago, I spent several days on the range, determined to not feel so out of my element. I am glad I changed my attitude. Eventually, I saw improvement. I started shooting small rifles like a Ruger 10/22. Over time, I was able to hit a body-size steel target from about 300 yards away with my AR-15, without a scope. Hearing that “PING” of the steel from that far away is motivating! I was smiling to myself, feeling all kinds of proud!

Defensive Handgun Shooting

I took a training course from a family friend named Mike. He’s spent decades training our military Special Forces in advanced shooting courses. Even so, he was very patient with me, but was all business. That training was invaluable. Any feelings of awkwardness or fear regarding my pistol were gone. I left the shooting range that day feeling way more confident I could defend my family or myself if I had to.

A few pointers for success

  • When purchasing a pistol, get one that’s sized correctly. Make sure you can carry it, maneuver and handle it safely. Make sure that you can still shoot when wearing gloves.
  • Surround yourself with people who know what they’re doing. Take courses from professionals. Don’t just drive out in the desert and shoot at cans. Learn gun safety, proper methods, and GET TRAINING.
  • Practice, practice, practice! Over time your shooting precision, accuracy, and overall confidence will grow. It will become second nature.

The confidence that comes from having the option to defend yourself, your loved ones, and your property is a good feeling. There may come a time when the SHTF and the only thing between your life sustaining preps and the bad guys is you and your gun. If you would like to learn more about shooting and gun safety, contact Survival Tactics NOW!, here.

About the Author

Andrea B. is the Vice President of Survival Tactics NOW! and is passionate about educating others in the art of self- reliance. She loves family, fitness, and challenging herself by learning new and interesting survival tactics!


  1. Aaron B says:

    I liked how you mentioned that the gun won’t jump up and hurt anyone. They are simple mechanical devices and only do what the user “tells” them to do. If people follow your advice and learn to shoot from someone with the proper training, they can be safe (just remember not to get complacent about safety).

  2. Andrea – would you mind if I posted this blog post to my blog? Great information that would help many. Let me know!

    • Patrick – Thanks for your comment. We would be happy to have you share the blog on your site! We just ask that you have a live link back to our website from your article and cite Andrea from Survival Tactics NOW! as the original author.

      Thanks, again.

      Greg & Andrea