Focus is not fixation

This is to add on to my earlier blog post on Supernormal Stimulus.

Well, when one is supernormal stimulated, one gets fixated. When one gets fixated, we lose focus.

Being focused and being fixated is like looking at the ocean and looking at a glass filled with water from the ocean.

Aikido is the ocean, techniques of Aikido is like the proverbial glass full of ocean’s water. (No I’m not going into the half full glass, half empty glass, optimism/ pessimism crap)

Fixated is when we get too  caught up trying to deal with our attacker, and trying to ‘defend’ ourselves from the attacker’s ‘attack’. The attack seems larger than life, faster than fast, we get excited and when we get excited, we go into duality mode, fight/flight. We get tunnel vision, we focused on the things that are often the thing we should least focus on.

Fixation is the symptom of a supernormal stimulated mind, addiction is the next step.

Focus is the way out of fixation. Focus is looking at the ocean, fixation is looking for a specific wave on the ocean, when we look at the entire ocean of Aikido, we can see that an attack can come from any direction, there is not anticipating it. Likewise, a defense can happen at any moment’s given time, there is no need to practise or rehearse it. There is no need to get fixated in handling a specific kind of attack. Attacks and defense are like waves, there is always one for another.

The practise of Aikido is to allow our mind to calm down, to come, to a place where there is an abundance in response, in action to handle any given situation. That is focus.

As long as we remain focused, not fixated, we will remain fluid, alert and not caught up in the thick of thin things; our opponents will find it harder to catch us unaware, trap us with ambushes. We will know how to get out of a rut, simply because we can. As long as we focused on the solution and not get fixated by the problem, we can


About Who is Randy Lim

This blog is about the journey and experiences in my life as an Aikidoka. With close to 20 years in the arts, I'll make comments and judgements based on 2 principles, E&E. Experimentation and Experiential reflection. please enjoy, and comment freely.
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6 Responses to Focus is not fixation

  1. maenosen says:

    Reblogged this on Mae-no-sen and commented:
    I liked this blog entry from Who is Randy. Without doubt there is a difference between focus and fixation. In the later it means we close our minds to other possible actions we can take. I’m not saying I’m anywhere close to fully understanding and applying this concept myself (or even part way there to be honest), but I feel it is good to be aware that such differences exist.


  2. maenosen says:

    Thank you. I really enjoyed this. I hope you don’t mind, but I’ve reblogged it to my blog (so it will link back to your blog as well). I’m at the oppostie end of the spectrum to you with Martial Arts, just over three years since I started any form of martial arts, less than a year since I started Aikido. I suppose my blog is the rambling thoughts of a beginer trying to make sense of it all.


    • Hi

      You are most welcome to reblog it. And I appreciate your readership on this blog. Happy learning! I can feel for you firstly as a Martial Artist, and secondly blogging about it, and it took me a while to marry these 2 endeavours decently. Some things of the nice things I blogged, are hard to put into practice. Some things ‘easily’ put into practice are so hard to put in blog. you’ll get the drift.

      Nonetheless, keep training, keep blogging!


  3. I’ve been translating an interview with one of O Sensei’s direct students, Tada sensei. One of the things I’ve been struggling with is understanding what he means when he talks about paying attention vs focusing. I’m going to rethink my translation in light of what you’ve said – I think he is talking about the same distinction. Thanks!


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