As a responsible gun owner, you’re trained on the fundamentals of shooting, and you know the law. You’re capable of responding to a situation with force to protect yourself and others.

However, if you can reduce the chance of a violent encounter, you will do everything you can to achieve just that. Read on to learn about de-escalation tools and strategies for CCW gun owners.

Utilize a Discreet Holster

One of the top reasons to carry a weapon discreetly is to avoid attracting unwanted attention. If other people notice your firearm, you no longer have the element of surprise on your side. What’s more, if someone else sees your firearm, you can become a target without realizing it.

Choose a discreet carry position and reliable holster to keep your weapon out of sight. Hiding your firearm can keep you safe before and during a tense encounter.

Maintain Situational Awareness

When you have situational awareness, you know what’s going on around you. You know key aspects of your environment, such as the location of entrances and exits, and you’ve observed the people around you.

Knowing your surroundings means if a negative event begins to build, you’re aware of it and can respond appropriately. And if something happens suddenly, you can spring into action. In either case, you’ll be able to use the information gathered beforehand to help you respond to the problem in a cool-headed manner.

Treat Others Respectfully

When it comes to avoiding violence, showing basic respect to the other person can help tremendously. Avoid talking belligerently or rudely and keep a calm tone. A challenging tone and rude words can light a dangerous fuse.

Keep a calm tone of voice that projects confidence. Avoid standing too close, talking too loudly, or talking too quietly.

Attempt a Tactical Retreat

If it’s possible and safe to do so, retreat from an unsafe person. Some aggressive people have mental health conditions or are under the influence of a substance, which makes it impossible for you to talk them into a calm state.

Regardless of the circumstances, if retreat is a safe option, it’s better than using deadly force. If you’re talking to the person, continue speaking calmly as you position a barrier between yourself and the other person, then escape.

Use a Force Alternative

In some situations, you might not be able to make a clean escape. A secondary defensive tool can prevent a deadly encounter.

Pepper spray is the generic term for capsaicin-based sprays. This non-lethal self-defense tool can stop a threat in its tracks and give you the opportunity to escape.

Know your state’s laws and restrictions regarding pepper spray. Practice using the pepper spray so you can deploy the spray efficiently and avoid injuring yourself.

These de-escalation tools and strategies can help prevent CCW gun owners from having to use their weapons. Whether you get pulled into using your gun or can make a clean escape, call the police after reacting to the encounter.

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Dianne Pajo

Dianne Pajo is a writer based out of the Chicagoland area with a passion for music, combat sports, and animals. She enjoys competing in amateur boxing and kickboxing, but in her other leisure time, you can find her performing music around the city. She is also a dog mom of 2.