How Do You Let Lost Opportunities Affect You?

Discuss deer hunting tactics, Deer behavior. Post your Hunting Stories, Pictures, and Questions/Answers.
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How Do You Let Lost Opportunities Affect You?

Unread postby whitetaildna » Mon Nov 21, 2016 2:55 pm

This season, I have dedicated more time than ever to scouting, hunting smart, applying new tactics, etc. to my hunting efforts. I've had two opportunities at mature bucks and have somehow screwed them both up. The first time I hit a limb, it deflected and hit the buck in the back leg (he lived and has shown back up on cam) and just a couple of days ago, I had a really quick encounter with a target buck, and hit him in the shoulder, and haven't been able to find him. This last one is really getting to me, as I hope that he makes it alive, but none the less it has taken it's toll on me.

I think my biggest downfall as a bowhunter is that I'm too hard on myself and this last occurrence I've really beat myself up. With that said, what do you guys do after a failure or when you lose a buck? What do you think the best way to get over it is?


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Re: How Do You Let Lost Opportunities Affect You?

Unread postby Ol'DanBoone » Mon Nov 21, 2016 4:28 pm

Its hard for me to lose any deer. I REALLY love animals, but for some reason i enjoy killing them. Soooo, i take it really hard when i bungle it up.
But, and i know this sounds bad, its just a deer. They are a renewable resource. A wounded animal or one not recovered isnt the end of the herd. Dont get me wrong, we should still give all we can to being the most humane hunters we can, and put all we have into recovery.
As to the opprotunities, there will always be more.

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Re: How Do You Let Lost Opportunities Affect You?

Unread postby magicman54494 » Mon Nov 21, 2016 4:34 pm

It will hurt. It bothered me a lot more in years past. I think since I've had my share of success it doesn't bother me as much now. I'm not sure if anyone can say anything that will make it feel better.

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Re: How Do You Let Lost Opportunities Affect You?

Unread postby Lockdown » Mon Nov 21, 2016 4:38 pm

Shoot your bow until you're 100% confident again. Other than that... Time. It just takes time to get over it.

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Re: How Do You Let Lost Opportunities Affect You?

Unread postby Ol'DanBoone » Mon Nov 21, 2016 4:41 pm

Let me put it to you this way since you described yourself as "too hard on yourself", as that describes me as well. Ok, the mind CANNOT tell the difference between a real experience, and a vividly imagined one. So the long you dwell on all the things you did or do wrong, thats the more times you will do them, to your subconscious self.
However, the more you thing about all the things you do right, and have done right, the more times your subconscious self thinks that is the way it happened. All this year, ive forced myself to visualize everything happening and working out right. In my mind i see deer, i get opprotunities, i alwaus visualize my arrow goin exactly where i want it, the deer goes right down and so on. I even imagine it right down to controlling my adrenalune so i can make the shot. And guess what, Both bucks i shot i never got bent out of frame till after the shot.
Try it some time. Erase the bad and replace it with new, good experiences, successes etc. I could go into great detail about all this, but i learned about it from gary leffew when i used to rude bull a little bit. He who won 1 or 2 prca world championships in bullriding in the late 60s or early seventies.
I believe in it, its helped me control myself, and gain a REALLY positive outlook.

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Re: How Do You Let Lost Opportunities Affect You?

Unread postby BowHusker » Mon Nov 21, 2016 6:11 pm

Ol'DanBoone wrote:Let me put it to you this way since you described yourself as "too hard on yourself", as that describes me as well. Ok, the mind CANNOT tell the difference between a real experience, and a vividly imagined one. So the long you dwell on all the things you did or do wrong, thats the more times you will do them, to your subconscious self.
However, the more you thing about all the things you do right, and have done right, the more times your subconscious self thinks that is the way it happened. All this year, ive forced myself to visualize everything happening and working out right. In my mind i see deer, i get opprotunities, i alwaus visualize my arrow goin exactly where i want it, the deer goes right down and so on. I even imagine it right down to controlling my adrenalune so i can make the shot. And guess what, Both bucks i shot i never got bent out of frame till after the shot.
Try it some time. Erase the bad and replace it with new, good experiences, successes etc. I could go into great detail about all this, but i learned about it from gary leffew when i used to rude bull a little bit. He who won 1 or 2 prca world championships in bullriding in the late 60s or early seventies.
I believe in it, its helped me control myself, and gain a REALLY positive outlook.

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I agree with alot of this post...the mind is a very powerful thing!

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Re: How Do You Let Lost Opportunities Affect You?

Unread postby Edcyclopedia » Tue Nov 22, 2016 1:15 am

Need Therapy! :oops:

I'll never get another deer as long as I live...

I'm so stupid...

I should commit suicide....

I'm selling everything...
Expect the Unexpected when you least Expect it...
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Re: How Do You Let Lost Opportunities Affect You?

Unread postby PK_ » Tue Nov 22, 2016 1:42 am

Learn and move on. There really is no other course to take.

It's going to sting if it is a big one(trust me). But you can't cry over spilled milk. Just remember that each failure is a step towards success. Blowing some opportunities is an integral part of becoming a better hunter. They say experience is the best teacher and we learn more from our failures than our successes. So just stay positive and realize that those blown opportunities are actually molding you into a better hunter, even though it may feel otherwise.

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Re: How Do You Let Lost Opportunities Affect You?

Unread postby Dewey » Tue Nov 22, 2016 1:49 am

100% agree PK

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Re: How Do You Let Lost Opportunities Affect You?

Unread postby mainebowhunter » Tue Nov 22, 2016 2:05 am

PK_ wrote:Learn and move on. There really is no other course to take.

It's going to sting if it is a big one(trust me). But you can't cry over spilled milk. Just remember that each failure is a step towards success. Blowing some opportunities is an integral part of becoming a better hunter. They say experience is the best teacher and we learn more from our failures than our successes. So just stay positive and realize that those blown opportunities are actually molding you into a better hunter, even though it may feel otherwise.

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Well said. Take time off season to assess areas your weak in and try to improve. Shooting is the one thing you have control of when it comes to deer hunting.

And it just flat out takes experience to get better at this game. You can gather all the knowledge you want but it will not replace experience.

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Re: How Do You Let Lost Opportunities Affect You?

Unread postby whitetaildna » Tue Nov 22, 2016 3:26 am

PK_ wrote:Learn and move on. There really is no other course to take.

It's going to sting if it is a big one(trust me). But you can't cry over spilled milk. Just remember that each failure is a step towards success. Blowing some opportunities is an integral part of becoming a better hunter. They say experience is the best teacher and we learn more from our failures than our successes. So just stay positive and realize that those blown opportunities are actually molding you into a better hunter, even though it may feel otherwise.

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Very well put. Something that I think is lost in the moment, but is very important. Thanks
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Re: How Do You Let Lost Opportunities Affect You?

Unread postby JoeRE » Tue Nov 22, 2016 4:12 am

Pk and DB covered the main points. Focus the negative thoughts and come away a better hunter. If you don't learn anything from it, the experience was a complete waste and you probably are going to have a repeat performance in the near future.

Visualization has played a big role for me in not choking in the heat of the moment.

Also I firmly believe a hunter has to work your way up, if you have very little experience shooting deer with a bow, shoot a bunch of does and little bucks the first few years or you are setting yourself up for failure waiting of a big one or bust right out of the gate.
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Re: How Do You Let Lost Opportunities Affect You?

Unread postby ERICBROOKS » Tue Nov 22, 2016 5:20 am

Replay it over and over in your mind and learn something from it that you can use in the future.
If killing big deer with a bow was easy, it wouldn't be nearly as satisfying when you accomplish your goal.

And when I screw up on a buck, the next doe I see has a very, very small chance of survival!!

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Re: How Do You Let Lost Opportunities Affect You?

Unread postby creepingdeth » Tue Nov 22, 2016 10:21 am

WHAT joeRE SAYS :clap: .... if you are anything like I am, we are our worst emeny, bar none. mistakes suck, but suck more if I dont learn something. I've struggled all bowseason but it has been a blast. A vast improvement over last year! Get back on that bike...
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Re: How Do You Let Lost Opportunities Affect You?

Unread postby Edcyclopedia » Tue Nov 22, 2016 11:59 am

Sometimes I cry

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