The Day You Stopped Racing

guy on dating detox

I’ve been in Hong Kong for just over three months, and my friends often enquire about my dating life here. They tend to assume that I’m lining up girls and knocking them down like it’s ten pin bowling. They assume this because Hong Kong has a reputation of having easy girls. There’s a part area here called LKF (Lan Kwai Fong) where it’s always packed on the weekends. At the end of the night, it’s just a bunch of people looking to hook up…

Most guys can’t resist the allure of a free t-shirt and I can totally understand. If I came here even 3 years ago, I would have lost my shit as well. Maybe I just changed my attitude in life or maybe I just grew up, but these days, I just don’t seem to have the desire to keep playing this game.

I think it has to do with experience – for those that’s had their share of flings, I think it’s safe to agree that most of the time, it’s usually an unhappy ending for one of the parties involved. Rather than a romantic comedy, it’s more like a horror flick consisting of dead bodies and garbage bags. Unlike my brother, I can’t watch a movie twice (I don’t know how he does it) – I just think it’s a waste of my time; and I think doing random hook ups is pretty much the same thing. Each time you do it, you pretty much know how it’s gonna end – ugly and regretful.

I think most people do it without really knowing what they’re getting themselves into – it’s more of an animal tendency: guys just want to have sex and the lucky recipient isn’t the woman of their dreams, it’s the first girl who happen to make eye contact at the end of the night. At the same time, it takes two to hook up – girls are much more complicated than guys. They hook up to get over an ex, to try it out, or to look for some kind of love. I’m sure there are girls who are looking to hook up just like guys – definitely exception to the rule; but that’s probably a minority of girls.

I’m not knocking people who look for hook ups – you’re free to do whatever you like. I just think that like posting dumb stuff on social media, most people aren’t aware of the consequences of their actions down the road.

Not going to LKF actually bothers me a lot because a lot of people ask me about it. In my younger days, I’d totally be out looking for the same thing. I get this feeling that I’m just not feeling it – it’s like you’re in a house party and someone says “Rachel is coming to the party!” and all the guys start saying how pretty she is. You’re expecting someone good looking to walk through the door and finally Rachel comes and walks through the door. Guys shake their heads in disbelief over how hot she is, but you actually don’t think she’s pretty. You don’t get what the fuss is about but when they ask you, “Is she hot, or what?” You just nod half heartedly cause you don’t want to let your friends down but at the same time, you just have that unsettled feeling that Rachel is over rated. Yeah, that’s how I feel about this whole thing.

So, what’s there to do about my little predicament? When you’re over 30, I’d hope that you’ve changed your perspective on life for the better. I’ve been trying to become a better man and get some discipline but it’s really tough. There’s a Chinese saying that it takes a lot of hard work to be an upright man but all it takes is one slip up to become evil. My slogan for the summer has been to try and be a better man. So, to aid my journey on becoming a better man, it totally helps to read some inspiring quotes from someone better and cooler than you.  I found something that totally captures my sentiments about this whole thing from an unlikely source: Bob Marley.

Aside from being a legendary reggae artist, Bob Marley (as I’ve found out) has awesome quotes on everything. This is what he says:

“The day you stop racing, is the day you win the race.”
– Bob Marley

He hits the nail on the head with this. I used to describe this sentiment by using the metaphor of learning Kung fu: the novice learns how to punch and kick. The student learns how to defend himself and attack but the master doesn’t need to fight. As much as I like my metaphor, people sometimes get it confused and think that I’m proposing that I fight them in an alley way. I think Bob’s quote is better.

What he said.


Iona is a Wellness Coach specialising in relationships and dating. She works with single women to write their own love stories.