I love shooting. It has a calming effect on me. The time that I'm on the range affords me the option of being totally focused on the moment. Shooting safely requires your full attention. You can't be thinking about bills or appointments or chores. Just shooting. It's great.
I forget where I first heard the term "range therapy", but it's stuck with me. I'm pretty sure it was used tongue-in-cheek, but the more I thought about it the more I realized that it wasn't far off the mark. Shooting has a therapeutic effect on me. That realization got me thinking, how many times do we pass on doing things we enjoy because we feel guilty about spending time and money on things we perceive to be simple entertainment? What if we thought about those things not only as being fun, but also as a form of therapy? Would we feel the same guilt about it then?
Therapy is something that people generally acknowledge as important and helpful and are willing to make time for. If shooting a rifle can have a similar effect on a person as talking with a counselor, why not?
In addition to the therapeutic effect, range time also provides an opportunity to connect with other people. Typically, I go to the range with a friend, but he had to cancel last time and my oldest had the day off from school so he joined me instead. He did pretty well.