1.You can handle uncertainty
Especially in the beginning, if you don’t understand Chinese, there can be uncertain moments. You will soon learn to have control over how you manage your reaction to what comes your way. Living in China has taught you that life is unpredictable and you have to roll with the punches.
2. You appreciate the little things
When you run in to a Chinese person that speaks English, when you discover that there are pretty good expat shops so you can have your “Nutella”, when you see those things you feel grateful;it’s the small things that make a big difference. Experiencing gratitude in your daily life can add to your overall level of happiness.
3. You have a wide-angle worldview
When you consider a topic, your time in China can make you more likely to recognize that other people have different maps of the world than you. This map of the world is shaped by experiences, values, and beliefs, and differs within, as well as across, cultures. Your map influences how you view things, but living in a variable atlas of maps can make you appreciate that your view isn’t always ‘right’ and that there are other roads to arrive at a solution.
4. You are a champion charades player
Your ability to use non-verbal communication (whether in China or other countries you’ve travelled to) makes you appreciate how much is said without saying anything at all. When you engage with others, keep these communication skills in the front of your mind and consider what is being said is communicated by your hands, facial expressions and tone.
5. Things are just things
An international relocation is a debate over what you’ll be able to find in your host country and what you’ll need to make your new space feel like home. At the end of the day, you aren’t what you own. Most expats will tell you it is the memories and experiences from the places they have been, more than the souvenirs they have acquired that have shaped them. Take advantage of your time abroad to take stock of what things and relationships are really important to you and what makes them so valuable.
6. You are the 1%
You can afford Starbucks, Wagas and taxis to Pudong Airport. Whether you are here on a local or international contract, you have more than most people. Be thankful, not grumpy.
7. It’s seriously not that serious
If getting upset won’t help to solve the problem, take a deep breath, get a foot massage and appreciate that this costs as much as a beer at a Major League Baseball game.