Why compassion is an antidote to pain

The announcement about the awful suicide of Caroline Flack stopped me in my tracks last night. In death, there never seem to be words that feel right. Sadly, it feels all too late. I know what it’s like to want to die. While I am acutely aware my situation is very, very different, if you […]

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Walk: a little slice of Shaldon, Devon

“In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks” – Adventurer John Muir People tend to talk about walking as a way to ‘switch off’ but I see it as a way to switch on. I love walking for so many reasons. Health, nature, exploration, it’s an endless list. But I also […]

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Alcohol free living: 600 days then and now

Do you ever look back at yourself and wonder what the hell was going on? I do. Sometimes it’s not pretty either. In my drinking days, particularly in my 20s, you’d probably have looked at me and thought I was a laugh. Up for a good time. I see photos of a smiley girl with […]

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Why I love/hate running

It f*cks you up, running. It may not mean to, but it does.  You know those people (me) who talk about how great running is for our physical and mental wellbeing? And those people (me again!) who write about the positive impact it’s had on them?  Well, forget all that for a minute. Let’s talk […]

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Blue Monday? Forget it – here are reasons to be cheerful

January is barely more than a couple weeks old but Blue Monday – allegedly the most depressing day of the year – is looming. Quick, batten down the hatches! Save yourselves! Take only what you need to survive! Seriously now, let’s not be overdramatic. Why? because it is a load of old tosh.  A formula […]

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I don’t want to travel the world – and that’s OK

Sometimes things are said which appear to blow people’s minds. Like, for example, travel. Truth be told, I’m not fussed about travelling the world. Admitting to this absence of international wanderlust often ignites contrary societal commentary. It’s so fulfilling, the globetrotters/travel industry tell us. It provides you with a greater awareness and enables you to become more cultured as […]

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Progress, not perfection

Today I did not get a personal best at a local parkrun but I’m delighted all the same. Why? Because I proved to myself I’m on the path to progression. A few years ago, and as I lay prone on a treatment bench, a physiotherapist – in a sublime display of How to Lose Friends […]

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New year. Same you.

Congratulations! You’ve nearly completed 2019. How are you feeling? A bit worn out? Oh-so-bloated from the cheese, chutney and Celebrations? Fed-up already with the howls of ‘new year, new you’? I used to arrive at this point feeling burnt out. For a long time, toasting January involved Prosecco and passing out. I’d resolve to be […]

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Which ‘happy’ are you today?

From an early age we are taught happiness is the utopia we should aim to reach and, once there, should stay put. It’s funny really; always pursuing the vision of permanent vim and vigour leaves us ripe for disappointment. The uncomfortable truth is that the blissed-out perpetual end state doesn’t exist. Curse those childhood fairy […]

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Staying alcohol free – each day at a time

You may have reached the end of Go Sober for October without touching a drop of booze. Or you’ve moderated your way through the month and feel full of resolve to erase alcohol completely. Either way, kudos to you for making such a positive change. Leading a life without alcohol in it, even just for […]

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Step outside your comfort zone and admire the view

“It is not that I am so smart. But that I stay with the questions much longer.” – Albert Einstein. Hey folks! It’s been a little while since I last published a post here; not for lack of interest but because I’ve been so darn busy. It’s been a fun time; I’ve explored new places […]

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Find your tribe

Let’s talk today about finding your tribe. Finding your tribe is a powerful primitive force. In Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs (a motivational theory tool used in psychology to model human needs), love and belonging are one of the five tiers. Healthy human beings, Maslow theorised, have a certain number of needs. These are in a […]

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About Me

Hello! I’m Emma, the author of Devon Maid. I’m a self-confessed story junkie, journalist, marketing/communications officer, (slow) runner and advocate of positive wellbeing. Devon Maid is my blog and place to share with you an exploration of places: the mind and the great outdoors. It’s also my sanctuary: a platform where I can write candidly […]

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Do you need to redraw boundaries?

When a friendship causes more sorrow than it does joy, what do you do? As tough as it sounds, sometimes you have to ‘break up’ with a friend to protect yourself. This happened to me. I’d been pals with this person for a long time and we had a laugh through shared experiences. I thought […]

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