On Focusing our Focus
There are so many great leadership skills that we develop in youth, teens and families at KMMA.
I believe that one of the most important of these is Focus; I also think it’s one of the most difficult.
There are many important definitions of Focus as relates to our martial arts training, including the focus of power, focusing our mind in combat and even focusing our breath.
For the purposes of this blog, however, I am speaking to the most basic definition, the one we teach in our Basic Training Course (BTC).
Focus: “the ability to block out distractions and concentrate on what’s important”.
The definition is simple, not easy; and a lesson of imminent importance for all of us, young and old, to remember and to practice every day.
When we are teaching this lesson to the kids, we use many great examples from their own lives- focusing on their teachers, their parents and others in authority when being spoken to, for example.
The fact is, however, that focus is a real challenge for all of us.
We live in a distracted world and it can be so easy to allow that constant chatter to take control.
With voices coming from everywhere and all the time, through myriad devices- from our handhelds to our computers and TVs- all dinging and demanding your attention all the time; is it any wonder we can be distracted?
When we allow ourselves to be drawn in too many directions, we can become overwhelmed and/or even depressed. Mental and/or emotional anxiety can be created or exasperated by the constant flow of ideas and interruptions.
At worst it creates anxiety, stress and other emotional states that cause us to perform at less than our best.
At best, it can be difficult to “concentrate on what’s important” at any given time.
It is towards this end that this lesson is focused.
One of the things I have done to try and improve Focus on my life is to minimize my media. At one time I was constantly plugged into Facebook, email and/or TV and not as often plugged into my greatest priorities. (this was years ago, by the way, as was the original writing of this blog which I have edited for today.)
We limited TV and Facebook now, and I only check email a couple of times a day. I still dedicate time to create communication with my tribe, as I am doing now, but I am far more selective about who I care to listen to, so that I can focus more on my family, students, team and tribe.
YOU are important to me.
The talking heads are not.
The other technique that I am practicing and that I would like to challenge you to do as well is the simple act of being present. When at work, be at work. When home, be at home. When with somebody in person, give 100% to that person.
I believe that by doing a better job at this, I will be an even better father, husband, son, teacher and leader than I have ever been before. I believe you can be better in your roles and goals thus too.
While abandoning the idea or effort that we can be everywhere all the time, we increase our ability to be 100% wherever we are, every time.
I must be honest, I haven’t mastered this yet. But I am focused on it and, as we know, energy flows where focus goes.
So, I am focusing my focus.
Will you join me?
Prepare To Live; Empower To Lead!
About Grandmaster Stephen J. Del Castillo: Grandmaster Del Castillo is the founding Master Instructor of Krav Maga Martial Arts and has been empowering lives in Pasco and Hillsborough Counties since October of 2000. He is a 7th degree Blackbelt, MBA, author, mentor and success coach, a US Army Veteran and a proud father and grandfather. He is married to Ms. Barbara Del Castillo who helps him run the school. Grand Master Del Castillo began his training in the early 80’s and has high level blackbelts in Tae Kwon Do, Karate, Premier Martial Arts and Krav Maga Martial Arts as well as experience in kickboxing, Jeet Kune Do and Jiujitsu. He has high level instructor certifications from BBSI, IKMF, and KMG and has been featured in numerous Martial Arts publications and also Success magazine. He was a competitive sport karate and American Kickboxing instructor until he enlisted in the US Army where he served in the 82nd Airborne Division, where he won an Army Green to Gold scholarship and proceeded to ROTC and the University of Tampa. He was commissioned in 1992 and went on to serve in Germany with the 3rd Infantry Division and then in several other posts in the US until he left military service to pursue his dream of creating KMMA in 2000.
The Krav MagaMartial Arts Headquarters is in Lutz, FL at 1900 Land O’ Lakes Blvd., 33549. Krav Maga Martial Arts serves Lutz, Land O’ Lakes, Wesley Chapel, and surrounding areas.
See stephendelcastillo.com for more information and to order my book, Developing Your Superpower, Meditations on Mastery, Volume 1.