My Thoughts On Thoughtfully Magazine

Move over Cosmo and the rest, there's a new mag on the shelf. I've always been a lover (read: hoarder) of magazines. If that first issue gets me hooked, you've got a reader for life. As long as the publication in question doesn't start to let its standards slip or fill every second page with perfume and designer clothing ads - which unfortunately is often the case - I'm unwavering in my support.

Thoughtfully is a new lifestyle magazine with the usual entertainment, travel, fashion, food, health, and beauty features but approaching everything from a greener perspective. It has the potential to fill what I see as a massive gap in the market and will appeal to those of us trying to be more conscious of what we put on/in our bodies and its effects on the world around us. I was lucky enough to win a copy of the magazine in a recent giveaway by Organic Beauty Talk.

The publication itself is thick and substantial, more like a book than a magazine, which is good because I just know I'm going to want to read it again and again. As for its content, it was so refreshing to find that there wasn't any filler content or tired rehashing of the same done to death uninspired topics, like 10 Ways To Get A Guy/An Ass Like Kim K. I enjoyed Susannah Compton's feature on The Healing Power of Essential Oils; Brandie Gilliam's article on The Dangers of Microbeads was fascinating while the Greek Goddess-themed editorial was just gorgeous. Peppered throughout with seriously stunning photographs, Thoughtfully is the kind of magazine you want to display proudly on your coffee table.

Unfortunately it isn't currently available to buy in stores, something they're working on, and while you can order the print edition from their site, they only ship to the U.S. Thankfully they also offer a digital edition which is available to download as a PDF for just $5. The second issue is scheduled for release in Spring 2015 and I for one can't wait to get my hands on it, or my eyes as the case may be.

If this post sounds a lot like a love letter to Thoughtfully magazine, well I guess that's because that's exactly what happened when I read it; I fell in love. Finally, a magazine I can relate to, one that features recipes I want to make and products I actually want to buy. Thoughtfully gets you thinking and I can honestly say I'm a better person for having read it.

Out With The Old And In With The YOU

We've all done it. The Facebook purge. Our feed is littered with engagement announcements and ultrasound images on a constant basis. Snapshots of someone's dinner, a smug selfie. Every now and then, online and in real life, it's time to trim the excess. But how do we decide who to cut and who to keep?

The Frenemy

These are the people who won't acknowledge your existence when you pass them in the street but are more than happy to scroll through, and maybe even (bitchily) comment on, those photos you just uploaded. They could turn back-stabbing into an Olympic sport, if they were so inclined. You and this other person secretly (or maybe not so secretly) can't stand each other but are both willing to keep up the pretence of friendship for the sake of your partner, your mutual friends or your working relationship.

The Faker

One look at this person's Facebook page will bring on a bout of serious life envy. But it's all a big fat lie. That photo she just uploaded of her and her boyfriend, staring lovingly at each other (or the camera) complete with matching smiles and colour-coordinated outfits? Well just last week she was on the phone to you for hours sobbing her heart out because he cheated on her, she cheated on him, or heaven forbid, they cheated on each other. Then he broke up with her... She broke up with him... And so the saga continues. Just not online. No, an entirely different (carefully constructed) picture of their relationship is presented to the world. Everything that comes out of this person's mouth needs to be taken with one massive pinch of salt, and I mean everything.

The Fair-weather Friend

In the words of Flo Rida (how do I even know that?), "Come on baby, let the good times roll." This person is happy to hang with you as long as everything is nice and easy. Shopping the high street. Gossipping over a lazy lunch. Pointing out lads you fancy in the pub. Sharing the cab home after a night out. The two of you do everything together, except the things that really matter. Because the moment things get tough or you try to have a serious conversation about anything that doesn't immediately concern her, she's gone. Poof. Leaving nothing behind her but the ghost of her perfume.

The Ditcher

You were there for her through every trial and tribulation. You listened when no one else would, even when it meant losing the will to live. You became a frequent sight at local caf├ęs and pubs, tissues at the ready, nodding along sympathetically and doling out pretty damn decent advice (even if I do say so myself) only for it to be ignored time and time again. But the second someone better, more interesting or more useful to her comes along, you're dropped faster than you can say "Third Wheel".

The Downer

Then there is another type of friend, one that is somewhat harder to identify, that person who has ceased to contribute anything positive or of any real significance to your life. An encounter with this so-called friend, no matter how brief, leaves you feeling bad, about your life and about yourself. It's not that she isn't a good person or that she's done anything wrong per se, it's just that you're no longer benefitting from having this person around. Of course it could simply be that you've outgrown one another, your lives have taken different directions and you no longer have anything in common. Whatever the reason, you know deep down that this friendship isn't what it once was (or what it should be) but due to some misguided sense of loyalty, you're determined to hang on in there till the end, even if it kills you.

In the spirit of the new year and making a fresh start my advice to one and all is as follows: Let go or be dragged.

It's taken me a long time to realise that there are certain people in my life that I no longer want to be there. And I've discovered that it is much harder to cut ties with these people than I originally thought. Frenemies I can handle; I have neither the time nor the patience for them anymore and if anyone wants to ask me why he/she is no longer friends with me on Facebook, I'll be only too happy to share. But those other friendships, the ones that are balanced oh-so-precariously, have to be handled with care. You don't want anyone's feelings to get hurt and a part of you is still wondering if what they (read: your mother) say is true, that you can never have too many friends. Wrong. It is my firm belief after much experimentation this past year that it is better to have one good friend as opposed to ten rather crappy ones.

If it was mouldy old bread, then we'd have absolutely no qualms putting it in the bin where it belonged so why when it's our friendship that has gone stale are we so reluctant to let it go? (Yes, I too am now doing my best Idina Menzel impression.)