Social media influencers are big on the scene right now, and Maggie Petrova is no exception to this. Starting with modelling, Maggie moved into social media and influencing when she realised that speaking the truth and being true to yourself is the key to success. With over 40k followers on Instagram, she has a clear and dedicated following.
When we spoke to Maggie, a move to California was on the cards, and now she has achieved this goal. Find out where the motive for the move came from and her advice on facing up to your problems…
“Face your problems. The first step is awareness, once you have that, it’s just a matter of forgiving yourself. It’s ok to feel that way. Knowing how to get yourself out of a bad place is key – start doing every good thing for your body.” – Maggie Petrova
Taylor Magazine: Tell us a little bit about you and what you do.
Maggie Petrova: Ok, well… I did my masters last year and studied marketing and innovation, so I’ve basically been in school my whole life – I’ve never had a break! I was modelling on and off for five years. I was with Oxygen first and then Elite. I love modelling, it was my passion, but recently I decided that I had to let it go and focus on other things.
Last year I went through a hard time – I wasn’t feeling well and had no idea what was going on. I was running around like a mad woman! I had just graduated, I didn’t want to settle in a nine ’till five job, I was travelling a lot and kind of trying to find myself. It was a struggle and then when I got back I started feeling worse, not just with health, but with everything. I just knew I had to make a shift in my life somewhere.
I went back home to Bulgaria where I was born, and I realised that I had a condition that is linked to diabetes. I decided that I had to share that with everyone around me, so people could understand what was going on. I also had to change the focus on my social channels: I still post about fashion, travel and lifestyle but I also include wellness into this, which is why I love Taylor Magazine so much – it’s all about empowering women and focusing on healthy, strong women. It’s so inspiring. That is ultimately what I want to do and achieve. I made a decision to start a nutrition course, which is a year long. It’s all online so I can get a job to have on the side. I’m just focusing on taking care of myself at the minute!
Taylor Magazine: Have you had any challenges or difficulties since you started the influencer journey?
Maggie Petrova: Yeah – it’s mainly to do with people in London just judging and pointing fingers. I mean, it could just be jealousy and people not understanding what I’m doing but that was the hardest thing for me. Letting go of the fear of what people might think and just being myself through the whole journey. The right people will stay in my life – that’s a filter for me.
“Letting go of the fear of what people might think and just being myself through the whole journey. The right people will stay in my life – that’s a filter for me.” – Maggie Petrova
Taylor Magazine: It seems like a good way to determine who is there for you and who is supportive of you?
Maggie Petrova: Exactly! Not everyone understands the industry and how you can make social media a job. If you love it and are good at what you do, then why not.
Taylor Magazine: What’s been the most rewarding part of what you do?
Maggie Petrova: Hearing from people and just knowing that I’m helping young people around me with whatever they’re doing. Also, I’m able to travel, meet other influencers and learn from them. It’s good to see that face-to-face. Throughout the year I’ve felt more and more motivated as time has gone on.
Taylor Magazine: A lot of people don’t understand how social media can be a job. When you first started, did you worry about how you were going to sustain a living and make money?
Maggie Petrova: I never really thought about it as a living. It just started off as a fun thing. When I started getting recognition, I got emails from various brands asking to work with me. Even then, I didn’t think of it as a job. When I started getting more followers and meeting up with others in the industry, that’s when it clicked that I could make a living. I was modelling at the same time and I think that and modelling can go hand in hand sometimes.
Taylor Magazine: Who did you initially look at to get inspiration for what you do?
Maggie Petrova: My favourite blogger of all time and the only one I follow every single day is Janni Delér – she’s a Swedish blogger. She is so natural and authentic. You can just tell that her values and beliefs are well aligned. Her and her boyfriend live in Monaco and she creates amazing content. I just felt like, if she can do it, I can do it. I mean, I’m no where near the level she is but I’m doing it with love, like Janni, and I really enjoy it.
Taylor Magazine: Yeah, there is integrity to it, you’re not doing it for money or fame, it’s more about the personal journey for you?
Maggie Petrova: Yeah – it’s about how I’m changing and how I’m feeling because of those rewards.
Taylor Magazine: In terms of the travelling side of things, what has been your favourite place or experience abroad?
Maggie Petrova: I went to Portugal with two of my friends who are in the blogging world – it was so much fun. It was so beautiful, the people are so lovely. It was at the end of August and it was such nice way to end the season. I also went to Switzerland and France – that part of Europe is so amazing because there are mountains everywhere and you breathe in so much fresh air. We did spa days and stuff, which was literally everything that I needed and wanted at that point in my life.
Taylor Magazine: That sounds like an amazing opportunity to focus on mental health and wellness!
Maggie Petrova: Totally! Ever since I had that awakening (that’s what I like to call it), when I made that conscious choice, I knew that I had to be healthy and relax. I got rid of toxic people – I made big decisions because I knew that if I wanted to have a sustainable and healthy lifestyle, this is what I had to do. When I did that, all of these new opportunities opened up to me. I noticed that I gained so many more followers and so much love from people, just from posting something super honest. No one is perfect.
Taylor Magazine: It must be rewarding because it would be obvious that people are resonating with you?
Maggie Petrova: Yeah, I mean it’s great when you’re posting about fashion and travel but you have to think what else is going on behind that edited picture. That’s what I wanted to start focusing more on.
Taylor Magazine: You mentioned that you have quite a few friends in the blogging industry. Typically, blogging can get the reputation of being quite a gossip-filled industry, but you’ve made friends from it. How has your experience of this been?
Maggie Petrova: It can be a very bitchy atmosphere, especially at events. I don’t pay attention to that – I have my own friends and the friends I’ve met who are in the blogging world I met in a different way, so we’ve always been supportive of each other. We never really let that define us. We stay away from that shallow world. When we go to events, we network and make connections and do our best to make a good impression.
Taylor Magazine: It seems like you have your priorities really straight when you consider the career side of social media. When you started, did you know what you were getting into – was it how you imagined it?
Maggie Petrova: Honestly, I had no idea what to expect. I was just excited more than anything. I had to juggle so many things so I never dedicated all of my time to social media entirely. If it didn’t work out, I wouldn’t be distraught. Bit by bit I worked on it – I definitely found it more of a positive than a negative experience. I gained a lot from it.
Taylor Magazine: On that note, what has been the most rewarding experience so far?
Maggie Petrova: Learning about myself. I was documenting a lot and seeing a timeline of my life and how I was changing, growing and evolving. That was so rewarding, especially at the point I’m at now. My head is clear – the energy is good with everything I post. There were moments that I was posting for the sake of it and I don’t think that’s the right thing to do in social media. If you’re at a difficult stage, you should talk about it, because people will sense it. Seeing who I’m becoming is so rewarding.
Taylor Magazine: If you were having a really stressful day and were really overwhelmed, what would you do to feel better?
Maggie Petrova: If I had the option to go home or not leave the house at all, if I feel uneasy, anxious or not myself, I would put some candles on – I’m big on meditation so I would meditate for a minimum of 10 minutes just to clear my head. I would put on a face mask, read a positive and uplifting book, clean my room and organise my life! Anything related to self-love and self-care. That is the most important thing – put yourself first and be on your own and let yourself relax and unwind. Just know it will be ok and nothing is the end of the world.
“Put yourself first and be on your own and let yourself relax and unwind. Just know it will be ok and nothing is the end of the world.” – Maggie Petrova
Taylor Magazine: How would you describe your perfect day?
Maggie Petrova: I would wake up at 6am (so early, I know!) I would meditate, go for a morning run on the beach, put some uplifting music on, breathe in fresh air and feel really optimistic about the day. I would have a green smoothie, sit on the beach with a nice book, relax and unwind, get my journal out and figure out what I need to do for the day. I would meet up with friends and then I would probably go to a yoga class – beach yoga would be amazing. I’d go for lunch, have an organic salad, go shopping, get some nice clothes. Anything that radiates positive energy! In the evening, I’d go see a movie – I love the cinema. Have an early night, snuggle up. A beautifully chilled day.
Taylor Magazine: You now live in London – how do you find the pace of life here? Do you find that it can be hard to have a mellow life?
Maggie Petrova: I’ve lived in London for six years now but I grew up in Florida, so the pace of life is so slow and I’m such a beach girl! I honestly think London would be the best city in the world if the weather was good! London has a balance but the weather depresses me. My dream is to move to LA, which will hopefully come to life soon. Weather is so important to me, it definitely affects my mood. Every time I leave London I appreciate it so much more but as soon as I leave, I miss it! Finding that balance is so important.
Taylor Magazine: Going back to self-care – what advice would you give someone that wants to get into that place that you’re in – feeling good and positive about yourself?
Maggie Petrova: I remember being in a dark place this year and the best advice I can give is just take it day by day. Every day, think of one good thing that you can do for yourself. Eliminate partying, drinking – all those things where you think you’re having fun but in reality, you might be drinking too much or trying to run away from your problems. Face your problems. The first step is awareness, once you have that, it’s just a matter of forgiving yourself. It’s ok to feel that way. Knowing how to get yourself out of a bad place is key – start doing every good thing for your body. Exercise is vital – do anything where you can be on your own and content with yourself. If you have so much going on, write down your goals. Slow down, relax, change the pace and don’t be so hard on yourself.
There are so many things people want to do in life, but if you don’t have your health, you can’t do any of those things. Also, trust your intuition. All of these things I was doing was because I was running away from myself, whatever your inner voice is telling you, listen to it because it’s just going to get louder and louder. Trust it and go with the flow.
Taylor Magazine: What was life like growing up? How did the move to London come around?
Maggie Petrova: I had a very chilled out childhood. I didn’t appreciate it back then – to me, it was all I knew. When I got to high school, I was in an environment where I had an identity crisis. I knew I was European but I was living in a place that was so American. People were having a hard time accepting people that weren’t like them. I was so confused about who I was and I felt disconnected.
When my Dad had the opportunity to move to London with his work, I was so excited. When I came here, I loved everything about it. It was also hard because it was difficult finding friends. We moved when I was 17, which is such a crucial age: everyone has their friends; everyone has their life. Moving here was the biggest shock for me but also a huge learning experience. I had to do so many things on my own here, because that’s just the type of city London is, whereas in Florida, everything is done for you, everything is slow paced. I do miss it, and my heart is still in the States, thats why I want to be in California, to be more around nature.
Taylor Magazine: We want to know more about you as a person, so firstly, what is your favourite book or something you’re reading now?
Maggie Petrova: So I am reading The Power of Now for the fourth time. It’s amazing, it’s helping me so much to stay connected with my life. We’re always thinking about the future or the past, but we forget that the present is all we have. We can’t afford to miss this moment now. If you’re in this state of mind right now, you’re actually happy. It’s complex but I’ve read it three times because it helps me think in a different way. I highly recommend it! It teaches you that all is well.
Taylor Magazine: Favourite film?
Maggie Petrova: My favourite is definitely Inception – anything with Leonardo Di Caprio – but I love that it’s about a battle between what is real and what is not.
Taylor Magazine: Favourite TV show, if you’re a TV person?
Maggie Petrova: I’m not a TV person at all! It’s so funny because all of my friends are TV people, but I just can’t get into anything! I would rather read a book or watch a YouTube video or something.
Taylor Magazine: What are your words to live by?
Maggie Petrova: As long as you stay true to yourself, everything else will fall into place.
Taylor Magazine: So… what should we be looking out for from you?
Maggie Petrova: I’ll be posting more about what I’m learning in my nutrition course right now. I’ll be sharing content on nourishment, day-to-day basis things and how I’m feeling, different events, I’ll go to talks and seminars. Travels, if I move to LA – how my life is evolving. I’m making so many changes right now and things can only go up from here!
Follow Maggie’s Instagram to keep up to date with her beautiful content and how the move to Cali has gone!