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Will Justin Bieber ever get a cellphone? Never say never. But for now, the 27-year-old singer is living life without one to limit who can contact him.
"I definitely learned how to have boundaries, and I just don't feel like I owe anybody anything," Justin, who stays in touch with his team through his iPad, told Billboard for its latest cover story. "That has helped me to be able to just say no and just be firm in it and know that my heart [wants] to help people, but I can't do everything. I want to sometimes, but it's just not sustainable."
It's been a busy time for Justin. He's about to drop his sixth studio album Justice, out March 19. "I think this is the first time in my life," he said, "where I've actually enjoyed the process of releasing an album."
The new music comes just over a year after Justin debuted Changes. And while the R&B record was certainly a success—earning a Grammy nomination in the Best Pop Vocal Album category—its tracks didn't climb to the top of the Billboard Hot 100 chart. The Changes tour was also canceled due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
His previous album Purpose, on the other hand, had three no. 1 songs, including "What Do You Mean?," "Sorry" and "Love Yourself." However, Justin also canceled this tour before the end of its run. At the time, a rep told E! News this was due to "unforeseen circumstances." But his team now tells Billboard it was because of concerns about his mental health.
"Everything was about success, benchmarks and such, and then I was just still empty, you know?" Justin said about the earlier stages of his career. "All my relationships were suffering, but I had all this success and all of this money, and it just wasn't fulfilling for me."
Justin began attending therapy and turning to his faith. "I just changed my priorities so that I didn't [become] another statistic of young musicians that ended up, like, not making it," he told the magazine, later adding, "There was a time where I really did have my identity wrapped up in my career, but I really do have an overflow of feeling like my purpose is to use my music to inspire."
He also credits his wife, Hailey Bieber, with providing support. "One thing that has been so helpful is my wife is so by the book," he added. "She's so structured and routine and so responsible."
Now, Justin is redefining the way he looks at success. "At this point," he said, "I've reached a level of success so many times that I know success isn't a be-all, end-all to my happiness."