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From My Heart: Entitlement

Mon, 30 Mar 2009 21:48:00
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To Whom It May Concern:

Hello, it’s me again. Just one person talking to another from the heart. I want to speak to you about the sense or idea of entitlement. I used to think I deserved everything I wanted. There were times, though, I didn’t actually work toward the goal I wanted to achieve, yet still felt like I was entitled to it. Years ago, when I was in high school, I sometimes procrastinated on projects that were given to me weeks in advance. I chose to hang out with friends instead of completing my work. The night before the due date, I would hastily throw the project together, and show up in class fully expecting a good grade for my “hard” work. And of course I showed up in class wearing the latest fashions, even though I couldn’t afford them. Why shouldn’t I be able to wear the ‘in’ styles if I wanted to?

When I started working, I always begrudged starting at the lowest wage. I was more valuable than that, even though I didn’t have any experience. I thought I was entitled to get top pay for gracing the doorstep of their establishment. I know I’ve talked about my Saab that I bought when I really couldn’t afford it. But I wanted it, and felt I was entitled to it. Why?  I don’t know, it was the way I thought before I learned better.

Once, I strained a close relationship by expecting a top position from a friend in his company after giving him business advice. I felt that I had helped him and he owed me, but what I expected from him was more than I had given. I needed a job at the time, and could have had one already, but I was waiting for one that ‘suited’ me. I either didn’t like the hours, or the location, or the supervisor, or some of the tasks I was expected to do, and so on and so forth. I felt that others should lend me a helping hand while I waited for the ‘right’ job to come along. Why should I have to work in what I thought was a “lowly position?”

The examples I have given about my own past behavior demonstrate the sense or idea of entitlement. Expecting more than I put into something, or expecting rewards when I didn’t earn them was unrealistic and immature. Fortunately, I learned my lesson over time. If you expect things to be handed to you, you will experience disappointment. I had to change my whole mindset and realize that like most people, I too had to work hard to achieve my goals. I had to learn that I had to put forth great effort to earn the finer things in life. I realized that the finer things in life had to be earned – I was not entitled to them simply because I liked or wanted them.

I started making more rational decisions regarding my finances and taking responsibility for my decisions. I stopped expecting other people to rescue me from my bad choices, the ones I made due to my sense of entitlement. I also realized that many people condoned, and enabled my sense of entitlement, probably because they believed or wanted to believe they were “entitled” too. I’m pretty sure I’m not the only person who’s ever had this problem. It is very prevalent in our society today. Eventually, I chose to stop seeking advice or help from people who enabled me to think erroneously.

Once I laid down my sense of entitlement, I took a much needed job that was “beneath my skill level.” Looking back, it was a complete blessing. I rose through the ranks in record time, because I actually worked for it. It’s wonderful to have nice things, but we aren’t “entitled” to them.

These are just my experiences. If I have reached the heart of just one person, I will feel I have been of some worth today. I am not judging anyone, so please do not judge me.

Your Humble Servant

 
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