Perfection is Unattainable – The Mindset of Asian Men

Perfection is to be marvelled at, but at the same time it leads to our own demise.  While there are some abstract components like mathematics which have a very clear expression or answer, living a life of perfection is truly another story. Even I must admit I have grown up demanding perfection upon myself, when in fact it was not attainable. Some of it I will admit came from my Asian upbringing as well. Just like every Asian child I was placed in the typical piano lessons and extra schooling. Math became my strongest subject, and I never took a liking to the Humanities during my K-12 years. Now that I think of it, what made English and Social Studies so difficult was the fact that it did not come as natural as Math or the Natural Sciences. I had to feel something. What was that all about?

Perfection Described

I remember the stories of my Asian friends who have parents who get upset at their child’s grades because they were not 100%. Phrases like “Where’s the 4%?” would come up after their child received a 96% test result.  Other times it would be the demanding mother forcing her child to practice piano until the song was error free. Perhaps you could say back in the early days of China with Imperial Examinations, those who achieved the highest grades were often rewarded with the best civil servant jobs. From then on, they were set for life. While perfection is great for theoretical pursuits such as mathematics, statistics, or natural sciences, it cannot be the sole basis when dealing with people. This is especially important in AMWF relationships, and every other relationship for that matter.

This becomes a huge problem for situations that do not call for perfection. Let’s take a look at a few TCAI examples:

Feng is your typical Asian Technophile. He’s great with Math and Computers, but when it comes to social issues – he’s completely lost. Once his girlfriend, Steffi asked him what he felt about the upcoming student elections. Feng shrugged his shoulders.
The problem is two-fold. Feng has never encountered this situation before and has no idea how to respond. Second, he may want the perfect response, leading into an “analysis paralysis”.

Alvin, an academic overachiever, can also be thought as an Ambitious Archetype. Recently he placed second overall in academic standing, and thus losing the Valedictorian spot.
Of course this just an example, but often at times Asians tend to measure their success by being the best. While it is great to win and be the best, there is no win-win mentality for us Asians. Thus we become completely consumed with the obsession of perfection – to be number one.

Hyun-Soo is popular among his friends, being the group Comedian he can always crack a joke to make people smile. While relaxing at the local pool, Hyun-Soo is dragged by his friends to the deep end of the pool for some diving board excitement. Although Hyun-Soo is not the greatest diver, he employs his patented belly flop. After a gigantic splash, hilarity ensues.
The Comedians are usually the best when it comes to dealing with perfection. Instead of being perfect, they tend to do something completely opposite and funny. While it is effective, there is a possible shortcoming if they overuse their humour. Then the excitement is lost.

Don, an aspiring jazz musician, plays the double-bass in his jazz trio. Almost always at the spur of the moment, he has the urge to improvise. His band mates recognize it and follow along.
Perfection for an Individual type is less of an importance than excellence. They understand things cannot be perfect, but just go with the flow.

Aiming for Excellence

TCAIIt’s important to realize not everything can be treated in a black and white manner. This binomial nature of true and false, yes and no, does not always work for real life. Instead of aiming to become perfect, we should aim for excellence – always striving to do our best. It doesn’t matter if someone is better than us, but as long as we put in our best and learn from our mistakes, we’re bound to improve one step at a time. Take for example any sport: soccer, hockey, football, tennis, etc. There is bound to be a winner and loser. When you win, it’s easy – but when you lose it is even more difficult to deal with. As much as we would like a perfect score or record, it’s almost impossible naturally. Aim for your own best, and improve yourself each time. Usually the biggest culprits of perfection-obsession are the Technophiles and Ambitious. This is usually because of their conservative upbringing. This is the old-world mentality. Comedians and Individuals are more liberated and usually deal with perfection issues better. In case you forgot, I’ve included the two spectrum diagram to refresh your mind.

Regarding AMWF

When in a relationship with a White Female, as an Asian Male it would be almost a natural tendency to go through all the “what-if” situations and try my best to make each situation perfect. I’d have the date planned out, what clothes to wear, rehearse the motions in my head – but then forget about being there in the moment with her. What I mean by this is when you are intensely focusing on a future even or past event while being with your White Female, you tend to make her feel disconnected from you. This can be perceived as you are uninterested or upset at her – which is not at all what your intentions are.  So leave perfection at the door, smile, and realize you’re with an amazing woman who loves you. So be sure to reciprocate.

2 Responses to Perfection is Unattainable – The Mindset of Asian Men

  1. Dav says:

    First I would like to commend you on your courage for putting yourselves out there and talking about interracial dating on this blog plus youtube. It’s good that there are people talking openly about this subject. Unfortunately, I do have some things I hope you can improve on. Please do not be offended.

    1. Too squeaky clean. (Dating is a dirty business and we all know it.)
    2. Unbalanced view. (you tend to cater towards females. This is not a bad thing and it is your choice. However, it does not give a unbalanced view of interracial dating. )
    3. Incorrect analysis. (some of your analysis on asian culture or asian men are a bit off the mark)
    4. Unhelpful advice. (this mostly stems from incorrect analysis. Unfortunately, your advice for asian men needs improvement)

    I hope these comments don’t discourage you. If this comment does not help you to improve, I want you to disregard it.

    Thank you for reading and what you do.

    • AMWF Love says:

      Thanks Dav,

      There will always be a bias because of the nature of what we do. The point is that you have to go out there and say something regardless of if it is perfect or not. As we all know it’s very difficult to meet the needs of every single individual, but we do our best to appeal to everyone.

      In response to your comments:
      1. The nature of dating is unique to everyone’s experience, values, morals, goals, etc. Depending on what your objective is, then you proceed to how you want to achieve it. I prefer a long term relationship myself, and I talk about issues that arise “after the honeymoon phase”.

      2. The reason for imbalance is that it offers another viewpoint for Asian Males. They are very intelligent so, they will be able to reverse engineer it for themselves.

      3. Like I have mentioned in this article, perfection is unattainable. I chose to write something controversial because I believed it was important that I would say it. The problem is that there are multiple situations, but I developed a model that would help explain it. Its sole purpose is to make it easier to understand Asian Men. We have a tendency to pick out things that do not fit in for Asian Culture – be it any physical or social blemishes – it almost becomes so accepted that it is normal to us.

      4. In regards to advice, I am here to present information. I am not a relationship or lifestyle coach, but just an individual reflecting on my life’s experiences. Laura also shares a part of herself as well. It is important for us to maintain being true to ourselves.

      Thanks for your response, we appreciate all comments here at AMWF Love. 🙂

      – Brian

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