Justin Bieber is one of the most polarising celebrities of the 21st century.
While the Canadian pop star boasts legions of devoted ‘Beliebers’, even to this day, he’s also a regular target of hatred and criticism. You love him or you hate him – although he’s become a far less controversial figure in recent years after getting married, finding Jesus and settling down a bit.
Still, memories of Bieber’s ‘bad boy’ years remain potent in many fan’s minds – and Bieber’s too, it seems. The now-26-year-old shared a heartfelt post on Instagram earlier this week: a mea culpa for his bad behaviour and a valuable lesson in how important it is to have a growth mindset.
“7 years ago today I was arrested,” he explained, describing it as “not my finest hour…I was hurting, unhappy, confused, angry, mislead, misunderstood and angry at God.”
“I also wore too much leather for someone in Miami,” he jokes.
“All this to say God has brought me a long way… My encouragement to you is to let your past be a reminder of how far God has brought you. Don’t allow shame to ruin your ‘today’.”
Ignoring the Christian stuff for a moment, it’s a worthy take and emblematic of how much Bieber has changed as he’s grown into adulthood.
Many celebrities who were thrust into the spotlight at an early age have stumbled under the pressures of fame. Amanda Bynes, Macaulay Culkin, Miley Cyrus, Shia LaBeouf… Many child stars have in later life been able to reinvent themselves, with mixed results. Bieber stands out as a particularly rare success story.
That he has been able to conquer his demons and not only turn his musical oeuvre but his whole life around is remarkably impressive, regardless of what you think of the guy or his newfound faith. It’s a lesson we can all learn from – self-improvement is a marathon, not a sprint, and you shouldn’t let shame hold you back from making a change.
Oh, and that quip about too much leather for Miami is golden. Thankfully, ‘the Biebs’ dresses much better these days (although he’s not without his moments)…