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Shooting consciously


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Been shooting matches continuously for the past 16 yrs. and haven’t had this conscious mind for yrs. Suddenly found myself in such situation in the recent AustralAsia lev. 4 match. Naturally resulted in disastrous performance. What confounded me was, I never expected to shoot in such conscious mind after yrs  of shooting subconscious and knowing the supposed correct mind set. So it caught me unprepared and even knew while into it. And could not get out of it not until the end of the match. 

As Brian said, the mind is one tricky bastard. Indeed!

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9 hours ago, perttime said:

Any idea what put you into such a conscious state of mind?

Something about the match or stage design? Something internal? Something different about the conditions?

Almost everything was different since it was a lev. 4 match. But I was confident enough since I have lots of lev. 3s in my belt prior so I was least expecting it. 

eta. I also treat every major different so everything is new every time

Edited by BoyGlock
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1 hour ago, CrashDodson said:

What do you mean by treat every major match different?

Dont subscribe to familiarity of cofs, range ambiance, shooters, ROs etc. I just rely on my shooting skills whatever it may be. I may be familiar w/ some of them but when its time to study learn and run the stage, have fresh focus on the cof reqts. In short Im in guarded confidence mode. 
In hindsight I could have been a bit too careful that it threw me off of my normal match pace.
A Class Open by the way fwiw

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I’ve only been shooting competitively for four years, but have competitive experience in many other sports. I used to play big money golf matches so being in the zone was mandatory otherwise you would find yourself down a lot of money in just a few holes.

I shot my first major match last year. I performed very poorly. Even my friends who I shoot with a lot said that I looked to be shooting carefully versus shooting up to my capabilities. The second major was later that year. I shot the match extremely well, placing higher than shooters who I never thought I’d place higher. Both of these were 3 gun matches.

Earlier this year I shot my first sectional. I did the exact same thing i did at my first major...I tried getting my hits, over aiming, resulting in a whole bunch of mikes, and slow stage times.

Only after that sectional did I realize what I did wrong at that match, as well as my first 3 gun major. I was thinking too much, and shooting with fear of missing targets. I shot another 3 gun major back in September and did even better than the previous year that I performed well at. I went to the match with confidence, had solid stage plans, and just shot without thinking. I visualize how I’d shoot the stage and seared that into my mind.

I brought up golf in the beginning because when I played with fear of whatever, it made me second guess myself, my choices, my mechanics, etc. When I got out of my own way I was able to visualize my shots and then hit them. I found over the decade I played golf for money that my confidence was tied to my subconscious mind. If my confidence waned, my conscious mind would start thinking about dumb things like my swing tempo, and mechanics.

At least that’s my take on mental performance.

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In hindsight, I think what distracted me most and caused a lot of stress was, in all stages we were required to fall in line to walk thru. If the cof is as simple as a few targets and few or no options Im ok. But in most cases there were several options in almost all stages. If I had to walk the other options I saw I had to fall behind the line again eating up all the time limits in walk thru and I ended up undecided and unprepared in my mental programming of the stage. This caused a lot of apprehensions and at worse panic w/c I was not used to. I could scout some cofs from a distance in advance (we were not allowed to enter the stages even if the range was closed)  but its quite different when I actually walked thru them. 
Maybe Im just a slow mind?

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