Alphas and Mikes (Part 2)

Originally posted on the Team SIG SAUER website.

Yeah, I screwed up. Somewhere along the line, a supposedly easy stage snuck up on me When the last piece of brass hit the ground, I was drowning in sub-par marksmanship, ego, and penalties. I’m not sure where it all went wrong. At the time, I was getting feedback from my sights, and blazing away a good time. When we went to score and paste, well, the targets told another story. Lots of Deltas where I thought I had hung them in at least the Charlie zone. None of the shots were hard. I’d made each and every one of them a thousand times before with live ammo or a Simunitions® pistol. When the proverbial smoke cleared, I had screwed that one up big time.

Off to the next stage. The next stage was even simpler, with one twist. A special order you had to engage the targets. I started my way through the stage strong. But, leave it to me to screw it up. At that point, I didn’t think I could take two bad hits in a row.

e·go ~ ēɡō [noun] ~ a person’s sense of self-esteem or self-importance.

pride ~ prīd [noun] ~ a feeling or deep pleasure or satisfaction derived from one’s own achievements, the achievements of those with whom one is closely associated, or from qualities or possessions that are widely admired.

In looking at ego and pride, one would think they are cut from the same cloth. I do not believe they are. I think ego is the thing hampering our performance. I think pride drives us to be better.

During the match last weekend – after the second stage I screwed up – I got my ego out of the way and my pride kicked in. I hit the next four stages hard, and managed to finish really strongly. If I had wallowed in my ego, I am not sure my performance would have picked up. I just kept reminding myself that ego and pride are not the same beast.

They say ego is healthy. Ego keeps us competitive. I think it’s pride that keeps us competitive and fosters the drive to be better. Ego just drives the ship more than it should, and it spends too much time looking at the past.

A positive mental attitude may be tough to keep at times, but it is as important as any piece of gear you own.

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