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Staying in the Present


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I am not looking for a magic answer or fix, but was wondering if others have experienced what I am currently experiencing, and if so, how you managed it.

I took a couple of months off from competition and did a moderate amount of dry firing during that time. I also focused on taking life (and competition) a lot less seriously and leaned to "breathe" a little and focus on basics.

When I returned to competition about a month ago, my mantra was to:

Stay in the present

Take my time

Breathe

See my sights

Control the trigger

Call my shots

I shot four or five matches and did pretty well following that mantra. I felt very relaxed and at ease., did not "try" too hard, relaxed, and enjoyed the experience of shooting. As a result, I achieved some very good results, with significant achievements in accuracy. My speed was down a bit, but not as much as I felt it would be, because it seemed to me as though I was really shooting extra slow. My times didn't show a great big reduction in speed, though, and the improved results were coming from taking my time, minimizing mistakes, and not dropping a lot of points.

This success lasted for several consecutive matches. Then suddenly, two weeks ago, my scores began to suffer, my accuracy fell way off, I made a few mental errors on some stages, and my results were not good. I had made no conscious effort to increase speed, or think about results (instead I stayed focused on the process of shooting), and can't really say what suddenly seemed to change, other than I felt less calm and confident, and could only identify what I had done wrong retrospectively. I had stopped taking my time, I wasn't seeing what I needed to see to make the shot, my trigger management skills had fallen off badly, and I certainly wasn't calling my shots.

Even when I recognized what was happening, I seemed to be unable to correct it, and the past three matches have produced continuously worse results.

The bottom line for me is that I think I am not staying in the present and observing my shooting as I should, but don't seem to know how to get back into the groove I seemed to be in for several consecutive matches.

Any suggestions, exercises, or thoughts regarding what I might do to regain my peace of mind and work back towards success. My first thought is that perhaps I should just completely forget about shooting for a few days and let my mind clear.

Sorry for this terribly long post, but thanks in advance for anything you might want to share..

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  • 3 weeks later...

Stay in the present


Take my time


Breathe


See my sights


Control the trigger


Call my shots



Conscious mind can only do one of those. That's the problem. Faced with this dilemma, your conscious mind will attempt to give you what you want, but it's guessing because you gave it more than one thing to do.



Pick ONE.

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At my level, there's only one major consideration - keep the

sights on the target until sights lift.

That. Maybe, keep the sights on the target until you KNOW you saw the sights lift. Forgetting everything else...

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