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Expat Advice: Culture Shock in Beijing, China

What is the name of the city or town that you are reporting on?

Beijing

Did you receive any cross-cultural training for your move abroad? If yes, was it before or after the move?

before

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If they speak another language in your new country, do you speak the language? If yes, did you learn the language before you moved or while abroad? If no, are you planning to learn the language?

before

Were you worried or concerned about culture shock before you moved abroad?

yes

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How significant was the culture shock you experienced when you moved abroad?

very

Expats often talk about going through the "stages of culture shock." Examples include the honeymoon phase, the irritation-to-anger stage, the rejection of the culture stage, and the cultural adjustment phase. Do you feel like you went through these or any other stages as you settled into the new culture?

partly - no rejection: I had lived in other cultures for 10 years beforehand

What, if any, were some of the changes you noticed in yourself that might have been caused by culture shock? These might include things such as anger, depression, anxiety, increased eating or drinking, frustration, homesickness, etc.

intolerance of xenophobic expats

What are some things you appreciate most about the new culture?

respect for others, especially those older than yourself (xiao - filial piety)

What are the most challenging aspects of the new culture?

language

Did you "commit" any embarrassing or humorous cultural blunders? If you did and you'd like to share them, please do tell!

see my book: "the chinese business puzzle". typically, asking chinese if they have "children" when government policy limits them to one

Do you have any advice or thoughts about culture shock you would like to share?

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Get a quote for expat health insurance in China from our partner, GeoBlue.
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