We are all so apologetic. "I'm so sorry, but I have a question." "I'm sorry, can I come in?" "I'm sorry, I was moving a piano up 13 flights of stairs and missed your text."
What happened to saying no and not following up with an explanation? What happened to just saying, "I don't feel like it"?
So, here is a list of things I encourage you to stop feeling bad about:
1. Saying no to going out with a friend. I know she thinks her life will end if she doesn't go see the awful band with the cute drummer play on Wednesday night at the dive bar under the dry cleaner's. But you have to work tomorrow, and would rather a stranger lick you on the subway, so please just say no.
2. Your feelings. You can't help how you feel about something. That doesn't mean you get to throw fits (and things) and act however you want. But it's OK to feel upset, and it's OK to expect people who care about you to validate that it's important.
3. Not answering to comments or tags on Instagram and other social media. Your friends will understand, especially if you get a lot and have a million followers! Worrying too much about it takes the fun out of it -- and gives you anxiety.
4. Not liking a gift someone gave you. Did you get a homemade purple and gold glitter ashtray made by your distant cousin as a wedding gift when you registered at Pottery Barn? It's OK to not display it in your home -- it really is.
5. Taking a nap in the middle of the day. Girlfriend, get some black out shades and hit the sheets. No apologies. Then brag about it!
6. Doing things alone. We all need alone time, it's OK to ask for it. No one will be shocked!
7. Picking sides. It happens. People will get over it.
8. When others around you are unhappy. You are not responsible for anyone's happiness but your own. Be there for them, but don't take on the responsibility and internalize everything that happens around you.
9. The way your body looks. Listen, your body is your armor, it does so much for you every day. Be proud and don't let anyone make you feel it's not enough.
10. Wearing makeup to the gym (or not). Hey, if makeup makes you feel good about yourself, do it and don't even bat a fake eyelash. Many of us feel more confident and more put together when we have makeup on, so let's not make anyone apologize for it!
11. Changing your mind. It's OK to figure out something isn't right for you and to change your mind. As long as you can live with the consequences and people who love you aren't victims of too much indecisiveness, it's OK to decide you no longer want to go on that trip, or that you want the couch facing the other way.
12. Calling in sick, when you're not really that sick. OK, so technically your pinky is just a little sore from slamming the cabinet door shut on it during your latest DIY endeavor. But maybe you need a day to yourself, and work is just going to have to accept the consequences of you renovating your kitchen yourself.
13. Ending relationships or friendships that are one-sided or draining. This is a big one. We all feel responsible for people, but let it be OK when it's time to say goodbye.
14. Staying in bed, by yourself, on a Friday night, binge-watching Netflix, eating popcorn, drowning in Frank's Hot Sauce with a spoon. (Wait, is that just me?) I mean is there anything better? The guilt is the only thing ruining it for us!
15. Canceling plans without "proper notice." If we're being real, we would all rather be at home wearing elastic everything, eating a block of cheese like an apple, so we shouldn't act like canceling a coffee date is a disaster! They would probably rather be at home eating cheese too.
16. Setting boundaries for yourself and others and reinforcing them. Of course you're a people-pleaser. We all are! But if their happiness infringes on your boundaries, it's OK to lovingly say no and do a hair flip.
17. Standing up for yourself or others. We need more of that these days!
18. Being passionate about something you believe in. Don't apologize for speaking out about something that is important to you (unless what you're passionate about is kicking puppies, in which case we will not apologize for throwing things at you).
I encourage you to not say "sorry" for one whole month. See how much more empowered you feel!
Also on HuffPost: