“Nine keys to enjoying India” and, as Trish said, “many other countries as well.”
From the book “Enjoying India – The Essential Guide.” I distilled down the main ideas..
1. Relax. Take it easy. The pace of life in India is more relaxed than in other countries.”
2. Be respectful. Respectful of the people, the culture, the Indian way of doing things, and the religions. Your behavior and attitude will greatly influence how the people you meet perceive your country and its people, as well as how they treat you as an individual.
3. Be patient. Things happen more slowly. Things are often more complicated because you don’t know the language or understand the system.
4. Pay attention. Be alert whenever you are moving around and make a point of noticing what is happening around you. Pay attention to your environment, your body and your mind.
5. Be flexible. You will encounter the unexpected. You can hardly spend a day in India without encountering something you have never seen or imagined in your life, which can be a great delight.
6. Keep your sense of humor. Laugh at yourself when you make a mistake, but try to avoid laughing at other people. You will make more friends that way. Just remember that almost everything is funny once time has passed.
7. Keep your perspective. You will inevitably be seen as a wealthy person in comparison to the majority of Indians, who struggle to live on less than $2 a day. The government actively promotes the idea that foreigners should pay more for everything. Don’t take it personally.
8. Open your mind. You will be greatly rewarded. Don’t be judgmental. Leave any cultural biases or prejudices back home.
9. Open your heart. The best of India is only available to those with open hearts, open minds and a respectful attitude.