If you go through all the various blog sites, there are a ton of articles about various tips and tricks you can take away from concealed carry courses. In the past, I’ve written everything from my favorite carry handguns to accessories and even mindset articles, but I’ve never really talked about the certain tricks you learn after you’ve carried for a while. When you start off carrying a gun, people always talk about being proficient, concealing properly and training with your firearm. What they don’t talk about are the simple tricks that will help you be more confident and help with having a firearm on your person every day. Let’s dive into the things I’ve learned after carrying over time.
Confidence is Key
One of the hardest things to get over initially was the paranoia of having people find out I was carrying a gun. I started to have almost this unnatural fear that I would be caught carrying a concealed firearm legally and would still go to jail. Having that overall feeling of paranoia or uneasiness is extremely common among new conceal carriers. After a while, that feeling starts to get real old and eventually you start to realize people can’t actually tell you’re carrying. Being as close to normal when it comes to carrying a concealed handgun will help ease and take any unwanted attention off of yourself. Being able to be outgoing enough where people are enjoying you for your personality or manners rather than looking at potential negative aspects is always the best way to go.
Part of having confidence is being able to effectively conceal the firearm you decide is the right one for you. Having a totally concealed gun and checking in the mirror before leaving is one of the best ways to set that confidence high and not worrying over time. If you are married or have a significant other, they are a great judge as well since they can see various angles you can’t. Having some little tricks like this will ease your mind when heading out in public which will slowly but surely build your self confidence.
Being Conscious with Normalcy
For a number of people, once they start putting a firearm on their hip, they start acting like a super spy with their head on a swivel. They constantly look around thinking anyone can be a threat just like they are Jason Bourne. The truth is not much changed from before when you weren’t allowed to carry a handgun. The same masses of people are around you and for the vast majority of the time, you’re perfectly safe. The only difference between then and now is the fact you’re able to carry a concealed firearm legally.
Rather than letting that paranoia taking control of you, it’s better to just go on with your day as you did before carrying a firearm. If anything, there should be a higher level of confidence because you have a firearm on your person to protect yourself. The big key to blending in with people in the community is to not bring attention to yourself or any form of suspicion. Just going about your day like an average Joe while being observant really is the best policy for not standing out in public places.
Constantly Touching And Fixing Your Firearm
My biggest issue was always making sure my handgun was secured properly in my pants when carrying in an IWB holster. I would always fix my shirt and adjust my pants to make sure my handgun was secure while I was out. I always had this irrational fear of dropping my handgun in front of a huge crowd of strangers. It’s irrational and not realistic, to say the least, and after many months of working through the problem, I finally started to feel better about it. It’s easy to not feel confident in your carry system when everything is so new to you.
The best piece of advice anyone gave me to get over the urge to adjust your firearm is carrying in your home. Just walking around carrying in your home is one of the easiest ways to not only get comfortable with your carry set up but also to try out new pieces of gear. If there’s a new holster or magazine carrier being put into rotation, it’s always a good idea to carry the new gear inside your home to test out before heading out in public with it. There’s always a chance of issues or something feeling uncomfortable, it’s much easier to address and fix in the comfort of your own home rather than while you’re out in public. If you absolutely need to adjust your gun or pants, my best piece of advice is to do the same thing on both sides to avoid any suspicion to yourself.
Starting out as a new conceal carrier is never an easy feat. There will always be struggles and things that you will need to learn but having a few helpful hints will always help. Even for experienced carriers, it’s fun to look back sometimes and see just how much we struggled with certain things about carrying concealed. What did you guys struggle with as a new concealed carrier? Be sure to sound off in the comments below about your struggles learning to conceal. We all had issues so don’t be afraid to share your experiences below. If you have questions, feel free to shoot me a message on Instagram @fridgeoperator. Stay safe out there.