fixate

verb

fix·​ate ˈfik-ˌsāt How to pronounce fixate (audio)
fixated; fixating

transitive verb

1
: to make fixed, stationary, or unchanging
2
: to focus one's gaze on
3
: to direct (the libido) toward an infantile form of gratification

intransitive verb

1
: to focus or concentrate one's gaze or attention intently or obsessively
2
: to undergo arrestment at a stage of development

Examples of fixate in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The plaintiffs argued that the city violated the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment when commissioners fixated on preserving the ethnic makeup of the commission by using racial quotas to draw the voting map, packing Hispanic and Black voters into districts. Joey Flechas, Miami Herald, 11 Apr. 2024 Emotions took over as everyone fixated on the ring in the sky. Aliza Chasan, CBS News, 8 Apr. 2024 Advertisement Edwards, who was diagnosed with Stage 4 lung cancer about a year and a half ago, is not fixated on her illness but is excited to embark on an ultimate road trip. Robin Keats, San Diego Union-Tribune, 7 Apr. 2024 Such patients tend to fixate on the shortcomings of these lenses despite their potential advantages. Discover Magazine, 27 Mar. 2024 While much of the world is fixated on whatever is happening with the royals in the United Kingdom right now, two British legends came to Washington to receive one of America’s highest cultural honors. Emily Yahr, Washington Post, 21 Mar. 2024 Amateurs may become discouraged or lose focus when faced with setbacks or obstacles because they are solely fixated on the end goal rather than the process of improvement and adaptation. Brent Gleeson, Forbes, 29 Feb. 2024 At its core lies a fundamental reevaluation by corporations, increasingly fixated on maximizing efficiency. Ebony Flake, Essence, 24 Mar. 2024 President Biden has fixated on high housing costs in recent weeks, wary that Americans’ struggles to make rent or buy a home are weighing on the nation’s economic optimism. Jim Tankersley, New York Times, 21 Mar. 2024

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'fixate.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

probably back-formation from fixation, in part as translation of German fixieren

First Known Use

1885, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of fixate was in 1885

Dictionary Entries Near fixate

Cite this Entry

“Fixate.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/fixate. Accessed 19 Apr. 2024.

Medical Definition

fixate

verb
fix·​ate ˈfik-ˌsāt How to pronounce fixate (audio)
fixated; fixating

transitive verb

1
: to focus one's gaze on
2
: to direct (the libido) toward an infantile form of gratification

intransitive verb

1
: to focus or concentrate one's gaze or attention
an infant with normal vision … will fixate on a light held before himJournal of the American Medical Association
2
: to undergo arrestment at a stage of development

More from Merriam-Webster on fixate

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!