What’s the most important part of using a gun for self-defense? John Correia over at Active Self Protection has a few ideas:
The first and most foundational part of Active Self Protection’s defensive strategy of “Attitude, Skills, Plan” is Attitude. You must cultivate the attitude that you are responsible for your own self-protection and you are the primary agent in your own rescue. You and only you can choose to cultivate an attitude that no one has the right to harm you or your loved ones and you have a right and a responsibility to stop anyone who threatens to harm you and yours.
Regarding choice of carry gun:
Please carry a quality firearm that you have tested and know to be 100% reliable. Malfunctions DO happen even in the best guns (machines all fail at some point), but quality firearms made by reputable manufacturers such as Glock, Heckler and Koch, Sig Sauer, FN, and Smith and Wesson have well-earned reputations for reliability. Vet the reliability of YOUR particular carry gun such that you know it’ll function reliably in the moment of need. (my standard is 400 target rounds and 100 of the rounds that I will carry in it without a single malfunction before I will carry it, and any non-ammo malfunction in the gun resets that clock after fixing the problem) Knowing how to clear a malfunction is an important skill to have for defensive pistol use, but preventing the malfunction before it happens is a far superior strategy.
– John Correia, Armed Victim Fights Back Against Carjackers