What are Entitlement Tendencies?
Entitlement is a deception rooted in ego and unsatisfied opportunities. It’s the certainty that you did some kind of labor or work, and now you’re owed something. Entitlement is risky because it’s an innocent place to hide, and it gets you nowhere; at best, it is simply self-serving, and at worst, it trends toward egotism.
5 Ways to overcome your Entitlement Tendencies
1. Practice perspective-taking.
Take a current example of a time you got slightly annoyed with someone and spend three minutes writing about the situation from the other person’s perspective. Practice empathy what their agenda was.
2. Sensitize yourself to how good it feels to promote other people’s successes.
There is an area of social psychology research called capitalization research, which shows that promoting other people’s successes has a positive effect on the sharer. To make a plan out of it, try promoting someone else other than yourself at least once a day for 30 days.
3. Apply cognitive reorganization:
Take any of the entitlement propensities you can relate to and consider alternative evidence and viewpoints. For example, what are some reasons the same rules that apply to everyone else should also apply to you? What are some reasons why keeping peace and avoiding upsetting or offending people (unless absolutely necessary) is an asset? What are some examples of how people are generally more generous to you than you are to them?
4. Observe what happens when you check your entitlement inclinations.
Do relationships run smoother? Do you find it’s easier for you to sustain relationships without you burning other people out? Will you end up feeling less irritated? Do people end up supporting you more because you’re supporting them?
5. Catch yourself if you fall into the moral licensing trap.
Moral licensing is a cognitive misrepresentation in which people internally justify things they do that are wrong. It’s a common tendency; see if you can catch yourself doing it. For example, develop mindful awareness of thoughts like “It’s okay to take more than I give in a particular situation because, in this way, I can help people who are in need.”
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