Answer (1 of 17): Here are some of my life hacks, acquired from 17 years of living here: * Get an e-bike.
Marc Goodman's insight:
Adding to what Kaiser Kuo mentioned, I would also say:
1) Start learning Chinese as early as possible. Foreigners who can speak Chinese fluently here can get a lot more attention, and it can make things a trillion times easier.
2) Network with the natives, and keep an open mind. Some Chinese are very accepting and understanding of cultural differences. Try to learn from them, as well as explain to them some of the ways you're used to doing things.
3) For people who try to speak English with you, never worry about using the line "I can help your kids/relatives/friends/you improve your English." Even if you have no background in teaching English, people here are interested in improving their spoken English, and extending that hand out initially will open many more doors.
4) Try to understand Chinese culture, but don't get flustered when you don't understand their "logic." China has had their way of doing things for a long time; for example: you will hear the "5,000 years of Chinese culture" line dropped around a lot, and it basically means that things in China are very convoluted, and not easy for any one person to explain with full detail. So they just accept certain things... accept them, but try to find the way to solve your problems within the system.
5) Every once in a while, find time to get out of the city, especially if you live in Beijing. Many expats like to hang out with other expats, since it's more comfortable, and that's great. But I recommend not making that your only habit. Get out of your comfort zone, and keep learning.
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