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3 Ways to Overcome Your Fear of Carrying with a Round in the Chamber

Whenever you draw your pistol and pull the trigger, you want it to fire. The last thing you need is for there to be a click and you having to rack the slide to chamber a round. Even though it only takes mere seconds, if that, to chamber a round, that can mean the difference in a life or death situation.

And yet, there are some individuals who conceal carry without racking a round into the chamber. The primary reason why these individuals do so is because they fear a round going off when they don’t want it to. But before we go into three different reasons for how one can overcome this fear, let’s first go into more detail about why you would want to carry a round in the chamber.


The short and simple reason for why you should carry a round in the chamber is to be prepared. Like we’ve already touched on, the 1-2 seconds it takes for you to draw and rack a round into your gun could potentially cost you your life.

When your body is under stress, it reacts much differently than it would when normal. It may take you only half a second or less to rack a round into your pistol’s chamber right now, but when under stress when your adrenaline is pumping it will be much more difficult. The chances of your failing will increase, such as failing to pull the slide back all the way.
It’s much better to have a round ready to go so that you can draw and fire in only a moment’s notice. All firearms experts would all advise very strongly (and passionately) against not carrying a round in the chamber as well.

But if you’re still fearful of a negligent discharge happening with your chambered concealed weapon, there are still three different ways that you can overcome this fear.


Carrying a round in the chamber is a completely unnecessary safety procedure. As long as you follow other safety procedures, you can negate a negligent discharge.

Here are the procedures that you should follow:

  • Follow the basic rules of gun safety at all times (aiming the gun in a safe direction and keeping your finger off the trigger until ready to fire).
  • Knowing how your pistol operates
  • Using a holster that is molded for your pistol and that has a trigger guard
  • Practicing holstering, drawing, firing, reloading, clearing a malfunction, and re-holstering your pistol at the shooting range

Out of all of these, choosing the right holster for your pistol just may be the most important one. Using either a flimsy or a generic holster can possibly get into your trigger guard while it is holstered and cause it to fire. But using a holster that is molded to your pistol will negate these problems immediately.

As long as you follow the procedures that we have listed, the chances of your chambered weapon going off drop dramatically to less than miniscule levels. Hopefully, you’ll find that there’s nothing to be afraid of with carrying a chambered pistol.


Another thing you can do to overcome your fear of carrying a round in the chamber is to carry it around the house with the round chambered. Many people who conceal carry fear a stray bullet going off in public and hitting an innocent bystander.

But if you just take a couple of weeks to carry your chambered pistol around your house, and follow the safety procedures that we’ve just discussed, you’ll hopefully find that there’s nothing to be scared of at all. If that’s the case, then you’ll be more confident to carry your pistol concealed and chambered while out in public.


Many firearms experts argue that your pistol actually will become a liability if you carry it empty. After all, if you’re going to waste precious seconds racking your pistol, bearing in mind that you might not even have both hands free in a self-defensive situation to do it, then isn’t your pistol more of a burden than it is an effective self-defense tool? If you have to use a hand to block an attacker, then chambering that round is going to be extraordinarily difficult. If your pistol is already chambered, you can draw and fire with one hand at point blank range.

Therefore, to put yourself in the mindset that your empty pistol is a liability (and yes, you can argue that a pistol is empty if it’s not chambered), ask yourself what you fear more: 1. Carrying a loaded and chambered pistol, or 2. Not being able to use your pistol to defend yourself. Once people decide that they fear #2 more, they’ll start carrying their pistol chambered.

When it comes down to it, when you’re carrying a pistol for personal protection you have to do so wisely. Carrying a pistol without a round chambered is a huge disadvantage. When the lives of you and your family are at stake, you can’t afford to make these kinds of mistakes. Follow basic safety procedures (including using the proper holster), carry your chambered pistol around the house to get used to it, and putting yourself in the mindset that packing an unchambered pistol is a liability are the three best things you can do to overcome your fear.

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