22 May 2018

City Guide to Bristol


Maggie May City Guide to Bristol - Bristol Graffiti

Last year I shared a City Guide to Copenhagen on The Secret Life of Maggie May, and it seemed to go down well with you lot. Why then, I thought to myself, stop with Copenhagen? Why not write guides to several of my favourite cities?

I've got a fair few up my sleeve to share with you, but there was hardly any contest as to which one to feature first: Bristol. 

Vibrant, eclectic, loud, and colourful, it's one of England's treasures - a city which is so different to all the others, has a great vibe and is full of things to do. Here are just a few of my recommendations for things to do and places to visit.

16 May 2018

Happiness


Happiness - Maggie May

A year has passed since I published that post. 

And how do I feel one year on? Pretty damn good {Note – I am writing this whilst sat in my garden in the sunshine, so my view may be slightly skewed at present}.

I haven’t had any relapses – touch wood – although I do still get affected by my anxiety now and then. It’s strange, as while I had always been aware of my risk of becoming depressed again, and felt like I recognised the symptoms and signs quite well, my diagnosis of anxiety really took me by surprise. I won’t bang on about it again now as I wrote about it here, but I still find it odd that it’s the symptoms of anxiety which tend to rear their ugly head in my day to day life as opposed to low mood.

I feel like my experience taught me a lot though. Having engaged with cognitive behavioural therapy, CBT, I have been able to recognise patterns of behaviour and triggers which I wouldn’t have been aware of before. I still don’t get it right every time {who does?!} but at least I know now that I am taking notice of my mental health before big problems arise.

So what have I learnt this past year?

That you should say yes to things – for example, invites to social events, or opportunities which would normally pass you by – but at the same time, you shouldn’t beat yourself up if you want some introverted time to yourself. Meeting up with friends for dinner and drinks is lovely {especially if you’ve got a bunch as great as mine!} but if you want an evening on the sofa with a pizza and boxset instead, that’s totally fine too. It’s all about balance – we still exercise when we don’t quite feel up to it, and are then glad afterwards that we pushed ourselves to do it. But would you still force yourself on a run if you’d pulled a muscle and it was aching? No, because we listen to what our body’s telling us – and we should listen to what our mind is telling us too.
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