If you’re reading this, there’s a good chance you’re stuck at home with the current shelter-in-place order due to COVID-19.

Life is more uncertain than ever, and it has people scared. For a good reason too. Every day, I’m reading about criminals released from prisons and police forces absolving themselves of certain types of calls.

I’m also reading that droves of people realize they need to protect themselves and their families and becoming new gun owners. As a staunch supporter of the Second Amendment, I’m here for it! I especially love seeing women become gun owners.

There’s no better way to take your safety into your hands than learning to use a firearm and carrying it concealed wherever you go.

It’s not a choice or lifestyle to take lightly. New gun owners need training, practice, and attention to detail.

I went shooting at a range with my husband for five years before I ever thought about carrying concealed. And even then, it took me some time to get comfortable with it. I wish I would have started earlier, but these days I’m focused on helping other women in their concealed carry journey.

I’ve worked from home for years, and that was the perfect opportunity for me to get used to carrying, in a controlled environment. Since you’re stuck at home, it’s the ideal time to start.

Disclaimer: I don’t suggest carrying concealed until you’ve had basic firearms training. You should be able to safely operate and fire your gun before you move to this step. Assuming you’re there, let’s get on with carrying.

Get used to wearing a holster first.

When I first started, I wore my empty holster around the house. You’ll be surprised how different it feels to walk around with a piece of Kydex stuck in your pants. It took me a few days to get used to the feeling, and then I progressed.

Keep your pistol unloaded in your holster.

Next, I carried my pistol, with an empty magazine, to the holster and wore that around for a few days. This step gave me a chance to get used to the extra weight and the idea that I was carrying a firearm. I kept a loaded magazine nearby so I could swap it out quickly if there were an emergency.

Try carrying loaded but not chambered.

It’s a hot-button issue, but for the first several weeks I carried, I didn’t chamber a round. I needed to practice and get into the right mindset.

RELATED: We Asked 6 Women Why They Conceal Carry: Here’s What They Said

And finally, move on to carrying with one-in-the-chamber.

You can find all sorts of advice on the internet saying if you don’t carry chambered, you might as well not even bother. I disagree. I believe this should be your ultimate goal, but I’d rather see someone carry than not. There are lots of techniques and ways to get yourself to this point, and once you do, the feeling of personal safety can’t be beaten.

Test out different options.

Carrying at home gives you the option to try different options and see what works best for you. If you’re new to carrying, you’ll want to go through your closet to see what clothing conceals the best. Maybe you’ll prefer a bellyband or carry leggings to jeans and a Kydex holster. Thankfully these days, there are plenty of options for women.

If you’ve been thinking about concealed carrying your pistol, I hope working through these steps helps you on your journey. We must stay on top of our safety and security because you never know what is going to happen tomorrow.

Elizabeth Cuzzacrea Bienas is a business owner with a passion for female concealed carry education. Currently working as a copywriter, she loves to write inspiring and informative articles in her spare time. She lives in Seattle with her combat veteran husband, Adam.

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