I just saw the movie Collateral Beauty. Although the reviews were not that great, I really loved it. The story had twists and turns that I didn’t see coming and, when it was over, it left me with a warm feeling inside.
Especially the part, near the end of the movie, when Howard asked Madeleine if she is alone on Christmas Eve. Her response is simply: “My choice.” Two words – that’s all she said. No explanation, no excuses , no justification – just “My choice.”
Right then and there I learned such a valuable lesson. There have been so many times in my life when I felt like I had to explain my decision. So many times when I felt like someone was judging me and I had to justify my choice. I can’t begin to tell you how often people question the fact that I don’t cook, like it’s a crack in my personality. So I feel like I have to make myself look better in their eyes and I try to explain WHY. Even worse, there are people who give me that wrinkled up look on their face when they find out that I don’t have children. You know what I mean – that pity look. It never dawns on them that this is a decision that I thought through very carefully and I am happy with it. This decision did not come easy, but one that has worked out well for me.
So now, the next time someone tries to convince me that I need to take cooking classes to be happy, or starts to get that scrunched up pity look on their face because I haven’t experienced what it’s like to be a parent, I’ll simply say: “My choice.” No other words are needed. No other justification. I’m happy with the decisions I’ve made and I don’t need anyone else’s approval.
I’m hoping that these two words will help you the next time someone challenges your decision.
In the words of the great Steve Jobs: “Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life.”