A humbling dose of reality yesterday - I kind of suck at defensive pistol matches. Granted, yesterday was only my second one, but I came in dead last. LAST. Ouch. For a competitive, it's-never-good-enough kind of person like me, this is incredibly painful.
I mean, I do shoot. We go out with our steel targets and practice with all our pistols. I'm a dead eye when there's no class staring at me, no pressure and all the time in the world to make a good shot. I'm good with a rifle, even without a rest when hunting. I can drop a buck at 100-200 yards (I'm no long range shooter yet either) with a perfectly placed shot.
What it comes down to is being comfortable and getting stuck in an "I'm awesome when I keep doing only the stuff I'm awesome at" rut. Getting out and doing new things can be ego-crushing. (I started training for a high elevation 28K mountain run, and it turns out I suck at running uphill right now too). But the thing is, if I really want to do these things, and I really want to be good at them, all I have to do is learn and train. Put the time in. And I will improve. I run 5 or 6 nights a week now, and I'm starting to suck less at running uphill. If I spend more time shooting and get more training, I will become a better shooter.
It's hard to suck, and it's hard to be uncool and un-badass, but the only other option is to stagnate, to stop doing the work and thereby fail.
Which is not really an option at all.