How To Stop Entitlement: The Road to Self-Development

Stop entitlement.

Being entitled makes you do things you shouldn’t do because you think you deserve better than others. (Image: Markusbeck via Dreamstime)

Entitlement is something everyone feels. But in some cases, it can take over and turn your behavior into something hurtful and imposing for others. Here’s how to stop it.

Before pointing the finger at others, learn how entitlement can affect your life. The real victim is you. Being entitled makes you do things you shouldn’t do because you think you deserve better or more than others.

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Learn how to stop entitlement before it takes control of your actions.

What is entitlement?

Entitlement happens when you feel like you deserve something you don’t. Now, the real question is, where do you draw the line? The line is drawn when you expect to get something better than others because “you are who you are.”

The world rewards those that work hard, and this is very understandable. However, this does not mean that everything is given to you at the expense of others. The line is drawn when entitlement makes people think they deserve something at others’ expense.

When you expect other people to give something up for your sake “just because,” that is where entitlement kicks in. This can be scary and lead to rude, destructive, and harmful actions.

When you expect other people to give something up for your sake 'just because,' that is where entitlement kicks in.
When you expect other people to give something up for your sake ‘just because,’ that is where entitlement kicks in. (Image: Innovatedcaptures via Dreamstime)

The dangers of entitlement

The danger of entitlement is the harm you cause others and the harm you cause yourself.

When you are entitled, you hurt others by belittling them. While some people are strong enough to fight against entitled people, others become victims of permitted behavior. Standing up to entitlement can be challenging for some people, especially if they dislike conflict. This results in them becoming victims and giving way to those who act entitled.

Some people feel entitlement is the only way to get what they want. While some people might get what they want, they often lose themselves. Entitlement can also give entitled people a false sense of confidence. This confidence is rooted in the thought that they are better than others.

Feeling entitled can be very destructive internally. This sometimes hinders people from giving their best because they believe they deserve good results “just because.”

The universe rewards those who work for what they receive and not those who feel they deserve it “just because.”

Entitlement, at its core, starts in your mind.
Entitlement, at its core, starts in your mind. (Image: Vchalup via Dreamstime)

What can you do when you feel entitled?

There are things you can do to stop entitled thoughts from turning into entitled actions. Entitlement, at its core, starts in your mind. Here’s what you can do about it.

Know your limits

There are limits to what you deserve and what you don’t deserve. For example, if you purchase a burger and they give you a dirty bun or only half of a patty, you deserve a whole burger.

However, you don’t deserve a free upgrade, an opportunity to shame their service, and the right to demand compensation. People make mistakes, and you can prevent entitled behavior once you know where to draw the line on what you deserve.

Identify entitled behaviors

Whenever you think you deserve something, ask yourself why. This isn’t meant to stop you from getting the things you want; this is to help you identify if you are stepping over boundaries.

Entitlement can come from habitual actions. For example, say you ask a friend for help once, and they oblige; if this becomes a habit and you ask them for help, not because they do a better job or because you can’t do it, this becomes entitled behavior.

Treat everyone equally

Treating someone equally doesn’t mean allowing them to step on you; it means being respectful and courteous. Everyone goes through different struggles in life. Just because you seem to be in a better place than someone else does not tell you you are better than them.

When you treat everyone equally, you have to do so without regard to any measuring factor. Instead, treat them as fellow human beings with their flaws, struggles, pains, strengths, and everything in between.

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