View Full Version : Emotionally Calm and Intentional

Christopher Calhoun
01-12-2020, 07:10 AM
I am no operator. I have never been to war, nor have I roamed the streets looking for trouble (paid for by any government...ahem). I have had my share of fights, some okay, some good, some bad. Through all the messiness of life recently I have frequently caught myself behind the curve emotionally as far as events or otherwise that, for lack of a better way to describe it, piss me off. Nobody would call me hot headed in any measure however, I will say I have caught myself having more "what the hell?!?" moments where my brain has to catch up because my emotions took over. Some areas this is fine, normal, even preferred. I would say not so much in an instance where you need immediate action.

I personally have started to challenge myself and change that reaction from "what the hell," to "alright move." It is a little mental note to myself to just work through whatever the thing is and either make a decision or move on. Obviously, these are done in minuscule amounts of real time, split second as it were. Something that has helped however is four count box breathing. I bet some of your seasoned warriors like Gabe, Brent, Jon Payne, Chris, and anybody else are already doing something similar.

Here is an example. It is a stupid example but illustrates the point clearly: I hate traffic. I have to drive into Dallas every morning and then back home every evening. Traffic makes me needlessly angry. It is the only thing I can openly say I am utterly unreasonable about which is why I started doing box breathing on the way home and to work in the mornings. Not every day, because not every day is a bad day of traffic. Do I wish I was not in the traffic? Yes but that will be solved once I own my own business or have more than one income stream and will not have to work like this any more. The breathing calms me tremendously. I am better focused and it helps my decision making skills stay on par with when I am not stressed. Not quite ahead but still on par.

I like staying ahead mentally, so this helps. Will it help anybody else? I believe it will. I will even confidently say that on a forum where everybody knows a whole heck of a lot more than I do, that I can recommend this with an, "it works."

For those not familiar with box breathing it goes like this: Inhale for a steady count of four: 1...2...3...4. Hold, 1...2...3...4. Exhale, 1...2...3...4. Hold, 1...2...3...4. Repeat.

Try it. You may find it works for you. I even do this now before I hit the sack some nights and am going to purposefully start to throw some small meditation in before bed.

M1A's r Best
01-12-2020, 04:07 PM
Reminds me of the 2nd deer I killed. Huge. Acting odd (never seen one do that, was told later it was as dominant buck chasing a doe in heat). Huge? Field dressed at over 200 lbs. (limit of the scale they hung it on).

I first saw the buck, coming my way at over 400 yds., but he was coming my way, so I just watched him get closer and closer through the scope. After some time I realized I could hear something thumping and it was my heartbeat. So loud/violent that I could hear it. And about that time I noticed the cross hairs were bouncing all the way up above the deer's back. I knew there was no way I would take a shot with that going on.

I laid the rifle down on the stump I was sitting behind and forced myself to take a breath, hold it a few seconds, let it out and wait a few seconds to inhale. I watched the big buck, run with his nose to the ground, stop, throw his head up in the air and shake his head/antlers about violently, then drop his head to the ground and run a few yards again before stopping to repeat the head/antler shaking. This happened again and again as he got closer. He got to within a 100 yds of me and turned to his right.

I could no longer hear my heartbeat in my ears and picked the rifle up (M1A, by the way) and put the cross hairs on him as he trotted along. I was steady now, too (man, amazing what adrenaline can do against you, or for you) and as he was heading for the brush on the edge of the flat I squeezed the trigger and dropped him.

That is the only time I ever got so shook up on a deer, but he was big and I had to watch him for a long time vs. the other deer I killed.

If I'd had to do all that for a deer (or any other shot that needed to be made ASAP) I'd have not taken the shot or missed the deer unless I was very lucky.