Consider this a public service announcement.
I know how much social pressure there is to conduct yourself a certain way. Some people feel they know what’s best for you and the whole world. But remember that you don’t owe anyone anything, especially these things.
1. You don’t owe anyone an explanation for your living situation.
It doesn’t matter what kind of living situation you’re in, whether you have housemates, live alone, live unmarried with a partner, or live with your ex still. You don’t need to explain to anyone why you live the way that you do.
2. You don’t owe anyone an explanation for your life priorities.
Want to open a business? Become a pastor at your church? Sell all your belongings and backpack through India? Go for it! And remember, you don’t have to explain your priorities to anyone. They’re yours and you don’t have to try to impress people with them.
3. You don’t owe anyone an apology if you aren’t sorry.
If you’ve done something that someone else doesn’t like but that you don’t regret, you don’t owe them an apology. An apology is to try to rectify a mistake and the impact it’s had on others.
4. You don’t owe anyone an explanation for requiring alone time.
If you need alone time, you’re not being rude, introverted or unfriendly. You just need time alone. You don’t have to explain your need for that. Just enjoy that precious time alone.
5. You don’t owe anyone your agreement on their personal beliefs.
When people share their personal beliefs with you, it’s often a sign of trust that should be cherished. It’s a window into their souls and the way they think. But just because someone has shared their personal beliefs with you doesn’t mean you have to nod in agreement.
6. You don’t owe anyone a yes to everything they say.
I know it can be hard to say no to the hard ask, but just know that you don’t have to say yes to everything everyone asks of you. Know your limits and what you’re willing to do for others.
7. You don’t owe anyone an explanation for your physical appearance.
If you’ve lost weight, gained weight, changed your hair, grown a beard, or done anything with your physical appearance, you don’t owe anyone an explanation for it. You’re just doing you. They can deal with pink hair.
8. You don’t owe anyone an explanation for your food preferences.
We all like different types of food. If someone tries to judge you over it, don’t engage. You don’t have to explain what kind of food you like to eat. You just eat what you want to.
9. You don’t owe anyone an explanation for your sex life.
Whether your sex life doesn’t exist or does with another consenting adult, it’s no one’s business but your own. People will try to judge you for who you sleep with or what your sexuality is, but what they think generally doesn’t matter.
10. You don’t owe anyone an explanation for your career or personal life choices.
When it comes to the direction you’re going in life, you don’t owe anyone an explanation for your career or the direction you’ve opted to go. Just go for it! The people who truly care for you will back you up.
11. You don’t owe anyone an explanation for your religious or political views.
Whether you’re a Democrat, Republican, Catholic, Protestant or Muslim, it’s your choice. If someone wants to have a fun, candid discussion with you and you also want that, have at it. A good debate or exchange of ideas is a lot of fun.
12. You don’t owe anyone an explanation for being single.
It doesn’t matter if you’re single by design or by accident — you’re single! Chances are, you’re pretty happy with it, too. You might get pressured to go find a partner and get married, but you march to the beat of your own drum.
13. You don’t owe anyone a date just because they asked.
This is such an important thing to remember. You don’t have to say yes just because someone asked you to go out with them.
14. You don’t owe anyone an explanation for your decision about marriage.
Want to get married at 18? Don’t ever want to get married? As long as you’re an adult making decisions of your own accord, your decision about marriage is yours alone.
15. You don’t owe anyone an explanation for your relationship choices.
Did you forgive a cheater? Did you get back together with your ex? Did you say no to a marriage proposal? These decisions were made by you for your own set of reasons, and you don’t owe anyone an explanation for that.
This article was originally published at Higher Perspectives.