In 2011 my husband and I made the decision to quit the rat race in Calgary, Alberta and move to the Oaxaca coast of Mexico. We had been looking for a life change for quite some time.
The daily stresses of long commutes, high costs of living and ‘keeping up with Joneses’ left us feeling like there was something more out there.
We had traveled up and down Mexico’s coastlines and knew we had a love for the country, the culture and the people. After spending time traveling in Mexico we found our perfect geographical location because of the consistent hot and sunny weather, miles of beautiful sandy beaches, crystal blue waters and low cost of living. All of this within a short, direct flight. After realizing we found our perfect location, we purchased a vacation property along the Oaxaca (Wa-Ha-Ka) coast, our dream home and our dream location.
We decided. We were moving to Mexico.
We announced to our friends and family that we were moving to Mexico. “But what will you do?” they asked. People could not understand why we were stepping off of the hamster wheel, selling everything and moving to Mexico. There was no doubt that we were scared to make this change, but our reason for doing so was solid and clear. We were excited to slow our pace, get a new perspective on life and immerse ourselves in a beautiful culture in an amazing location. Our ‘Why’ was clear. Our ‘What Now’ was the next step.
Moving in the right direction
After assessing our budget and investigation new career opportunities we resigned from our jobs. I resigned from an 11-year career in management and my husband decided to refocus his experience in construction, marketing and real estate to our new home country. We put our home on the market and began the process of downsizing our life to what we hoped would be a simpler one.
Looking down the road to new opportunities we decided to make the drive south to Mexico with our Chevy Avalanche. This is a drive we ended up doing two seasons in a row; the first from Calgary and the west coast route and the second from Saskatoon on the east/central route. We have to admit, the thought of driving into and through Mexico was a little scary. We made sure to do our research and ensure we had all of our travel documents, vehicle and health insurance in order. After doing our final checks, we set off to drive across three countries and start our new life marketing, selling and renting real estate. Overall our travels have been a good experience…although we are more than happy to share a funny story or two over a cerveza of some of the more eventful driving experiences we’ve had.
Three years later we feel we’ve truly found the work-life balance we were looking for. We have recently opened up a full service real estate company and have had growth and success with our vacation rental company now serving clients from Huatulco to Puerto Escondido. We are building wonderful relationships through our business and personal life and now have more time for what is important to us.
There are still challenges we need to overcome. After three years we still are not fluent in Spanish. Although it is not 100% necessary to speak Spanish in order to live in Mexico, it is something that will enrich our lives. We have recently registered for Spanish classes and are excited to learn the language.
Living in Mexico has been nothing short of an amazing and fulfilling experience. We have seen the most spectacular sights, eaten some of the best meals, explored nearly untouched beaches and have met the most wonderful people. We’ve taken up yoga, surfing and snorkeling and have just scratched the surface with the eco-tourism to explore in the area.
Moving to Mexico was the best decision we’ve made!
A great leader (and my husband’s all time favorite hockey player) once said “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take”. We took the shot and seized the opportunity to make some changes in our life and get some balance back. It hasn’t been easy all the time but it’s sure been worth it!