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Embracing The New And Releasing The Old

Written by: Leslie Gaudet, Executive Contributor

Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.


I said goodbye to an old friend a few weeks ago, and it was bittersweet, and now I am embracing a familiar friend, and it has been a magical experience, but before I tell you about it, let me back up just for a moment.

The last time you heard from me, I was in the silent space in my head, and I was feeling quite vulnerable and uncertain.

I had found myself in this place of dread and gloom and suffering and I couldn’t quite figure out how I found myself there or even why I was there at all.

I was feeling confused and alone and it was extremely frustrating not being able to figure out the What had me feeling stuck this way.

And so, in that moment of dread and gloom, I turned to God and asked for help, but I found only silence which made me believe that I wouldn’t find a way out because I believed that God was ignoring me.

But then something incredible happened. A quote popped up on my phone from a meditation app that I had downloaded, and it said, “Sometimes Silence Is the Answer”.

I say that it was incredible now, but of course, when I first saw it, it made me angry.

However, when I finally took time to read the quote a few times and reflect on where I was at in my head (my self-talk and self-doubts), I realized that that was the answer I was seeking, and I was able to relax and eventually, I found my way through it.

It took time but I found the answers I was looking for, and I found my way back to feeling more peaceful, and calm and I soon realized that it was God telling me that all I needed to do was sit in the silence and allow myself to be open to receiving, for in that silent space, the answers would reveal themselves.

So, as I waited and waited and my quest for answers seemed to be a long wait, it was my community (my trusted circle) that helped me find my way.

One of the answers revealed itself to me when I leaned on my tribe, my circle of really important people in my life who I care about, who I call my soul connections. That helped me navigate this rocky uncertainty and helped me find the questions within so that I could find the answers I sought.

Now, as I reflect on my time spent for the past almost 6 months in Puerto Morelos, it was such a bittersweet moment for me to say goodbye because this little fishing village in Mexico breathed life into me.

It’s where I came alive (or shall I say, I found myself again) and where I found the true essence of me, who I am, who I want to be, and how I want to live my life.

It’s where I became more confident and certain about my life’s purpose and my vision and where I want to go with my life and so as I took my final walk through the small fishing village, fondly called PM by the local expats, I realized I am going to miss it dearly, but I am forever grateful that it embraced me with open arms and gave me life.

As we flew out of Mexico into Florida and then took a drive up the coast to Canada, where we will be spending the next few months, I found myself taking a much-needed walk down memory lane and now I am reflecting on my time spent in Mexico and asking myself questions about my experiences and the way I was able to find my way back to being myself.

I realized that I said goodbye to an old friend – my soul connection (if that is even possible for a place), and how it has given me so much; much more than I gave to it.

It gave me back Me, the truest essence of me that I had been missing for such a long time.

When I reflect back, I realize that it was us, my husband and I, spending a long period of time in Mexico that made all the difference in the world.

Yes, we had visited Mexico before but that had only been a couple of day trips here and there but when we decided to adapt and live a location-free lifestyle, and we landed in the cute little fishing village of Puerto Morelos, that was the first time that I allowed myself to really let go and fully embrace a change in lifestyle, in comfortability (because I didn’t know the language), and I found confidence and let myself fully embrace its people, its culture, its lifestyle and in turn they all embraced me equally and welcomed me into their world.

Although it’s hard to explain what that even means emotionally, my experience of living in Mexico, both the first and second times, has allowed me to be the real essence of myself.

So, I am forever grateful and will always be, for it opened my eyes to what life could really look like when you go in with no expectations and without knowing what your experiences will be like and when you’re open to being fully present in every moment in every day.

And so, as I reflect back on my last days in PM, I find myself ready to answer these questions for me but also for others like me who are contemplating what it could mean for them if they choose to live this style of living.

What did I learn?

1. I learned that you don’t have to be anyone other than yourself because the people of Mexico embrace you as you are.

They meet you right where you are and will go out of their way to make you feel comfortable, especially when you don’t know their language.

They don’t shame you for not knowing Spanish. They actually will try and find a way to confidently communicate with you and help you get your questions answered.

2. I learned that I loved living in a small-town environment. I grew up in Toronto and never thought I could embrace such a small and quiet place but soon I found that I equally enjoyed the silence (when it would get super quiet at night) and the hustle and bustle as I watched the people of this village go about their busy workdays always with a smile.

At least that is what I saw because whenever I stopped to say hello (or at least my attempt to say hello with the few words of Spanish that I did manage to learn), they would always have a smile on their face.

3. I learned who I am, who I want to be, who I want to serve, and how. I validated to myself why I absolutely love what I do both in the corporate world and the self-development world.

4. I learned that you don’t have to choose a lifestyle to fit someone else’s expectations. This is a hard lesson I learned based on generational beliefs that were passed down to me.

The belief of my parent’s generation is that parents care for their children who go out into the world and live their lives and then in turn, the children and parents switch caregiver roles and the children become the caregivers for their parents.

It was the belief that at some point in my life as I got older, and my mom got older, that she would move in and live with me and my husband, with us taking care of her in her aging years, providing her with a home. That is what she learned to do growing up.

It was a very hard conversation to have with my mom because that is not how I saw life or how I saw my life going, in that traditional generational role.

It was hard, but it was important for me to have that conversation with her. My belief is that our parents raise us to go out into the world, to make our mark on the world, to live our lives, and that taking care of them as they age doesn’t have to fit that mold of them moving in with their children but that their children can still care for them and look after them and support them as needed but in a way that supports both sides.

5. I learned to embrace gratitude as a staple of my days and so not only do I wake up every day feeling blessed and giving thanks to God for another gift of a day that I get to unwrap and explore but I also learned that when I stack my days with gratitude (bookending them by starting my day with gratitude and ending my day with gratitude) that I am able to anchor in celebration memories that will last me a lifetime.

What were (some of) my best moments?

  1. There were a lot of moments in PM that I absolutely loved! One of the best moments for me was watching my husband become the dog whisperer for a few of the local dogs. All of the dogs (or at least most of them) run loose in the streets. Not my fav thing to see. But watching my husband start buying and cooking food for the local dogs who came around and how he built trust and loving relationships with them was such a special experience for me to watch.

  2. I loved going to my vet (who cared for my dog Jackson) and visiting with her and her dogs. She has these amazing dogs known as Xolos (or Mexican hairless) and they apparently come in different sizes, which was fascinating to see for she had three of them all varying sizes and all equally sweet. Dr. Maria holds a special place in my heart because she took care of my dog Jackson on our very first extended stay back in 2020 to 2021. She truly loved Jackson and was sad learning of his passing.

  3. We had a neighbor in the back of our home where we rented who had Lion Rabbits which are quite unique, and we got to see three litters being born. Of course, my husband started feeding them as well. He’d throw over lettuce and carrots and they would all gather around each other and eat together. In fact, they showed such love for one another as I would often see them snuggling together. It was like they always had to be touching.

  4. I loved living amongst the locals and walking around this small fishing village and feeling so calm and relaxed and loving every moment, feeling present and almost like floating on a cloud. I could have been having a stressful day (not many but they happened) and just stepping outside my door and walking around gave me such joy and feelings of gratitude.

  5. We also met some amazing expats and have made some lasting friendships that I am so happy about because that’s what life is for, connecting with each other. We are better together, after all.

How has this experience impacted my life?

  1. I’m more confident in traveling to different places and allowing myself to just be present.

  2. I found that I absolutely love the experience of living a simpler life without the hustle and bustle.

  3. I have realized that I am very lucky to be doing two things in my life that I absolutely love. I have a corporate contractor position where I support a team of Lawyers and Paralegals; one that I am really good at and absolutely love doing. I also love being a Life Coach for women and showing them how to create a strong foundation, build a sound structure, and create a solid plan that really just means supporting yourself as a human being with intention, and being authentically yourself living your life from love, gratitude and joy, so that you can live a life you love living.

My biggest lesson that I learned this time around going to Mexico, and spending time with the people and being fully present, is that Life is a Gift. One that we are blessed to open every single day when each morning we open our eyes and take our first breath.

I’ve realized that living my life from a place of gratitude and stacking my days with being grateful and pulling on that amazing gratitude energy allows me to truly be present in my life and anchoring in celebration memories that I will have with me for the rest of my life.

Life is short. It truly is, and as much as we don’t like to think about it, it’s important that we think about how we are living our lives so that we are living our lives with intention, with gratitude, with grace, with joy, and from a place of love, so that we can be the best version of ourselves every day.

I have loved learning what it is like to live a location-free lifestyle (or more commonly referred to as nomadic living).

I have loved learning that I am absolutely 100% comfortable living a simpler lifestyle in that I don’t need a bunch of things, for things don’t define me.

I’d rather collect experiences for again, it’s those experiences that become anchored celebration memories that will sustain me and make me smile today and in the later parts of my life.

Where to next? Well, we have decided that we are looking at Florida again and so we will be traveling back to the States in the Fall, and we will be ready to make new memories and lasting connections, building our community with the people we connect to for again, We Are Better Together and Together We Can Make This World a Better Place.

Follow me on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and visit my website for more info! Read more from Leslie!


Leslie Gaudet, Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine

Leslie Gaudet is a Mindset and Emotional Awareness Coach for women. She helps her clients achieve self-awareness around their emotional triggers by shifting their mindset to make better decisions when they respond, allowing them to bring more balance, peace, and harmony into their lives.

Almost 4 decades working as a Legal Assistant and Paralegal in the corporate world left her feeling emotionally and physically drained. That’s when she decided that she had to make some changes for her to live the life she loves. Those changes involved learning to love herself (without judgment or criticism). That mindset is the key to everything because our mindset influences our thoughts, and in turn, our thoughts dictate our words and actions. Thru her journey to self-love and self-acceptance, Leslie became certified as a Life Coach and attained further certifications in Group Coaching and Emotional Intelligence.

She works closely with her clients, starting with mindset because that is the foundational piece to self-love and self-acceptance. She teaches her clients about triggers and how they affect us emotionally by helping her clients tune into, spot, and understand their own so that they can become more self-aware of their trigger moments and emotional responses.

With proven tools and techniques and with her guidance, her clients tap into and discover their true potential to living their life and loving the life they are living.

Leslie believes that you will transform your life when you Change Your Brain (the way you think).



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