Tuesday, August 17, 2010


I used to think that people who had a strong sense of entitlement were also infused with a huge ego.  Recent encounters with more people who behave as if the world and all of its other occupants are here to serve them, has lead me to believe that what they are actually inflicted with is a very narrow vision that together with a huge ego, can run over others like a tank.

When you think that you and your needs or desires are at the center of the world, then naturally everyone else is here to serve you. 

I’ve seen this in the case of my teenage son, and as teenagers go, it seems that they have this type of vision in common to some degree or another.  As a parent, by teaching him about the world and showing him as much of it as I can and inviting him to read about places and lives he knows nothing about, I hope that it will expand his view.  With this expansion of his narrow vision, hopefully he will be cured of his sense of entitlement.

But what about adults who behave this way?  It is more common than you think.  You probably know quite a few.  And then there is the accepted form of entitlement that most businesses practice.  From the entitled guests at your house who think they can do what they do in their own home at yours without asking if they can, to tele-marketers who call at night asking what your mortgage rate is,  everyone thinks they can have a piece of you.  And they can, unless you decide that you won’t play that game.

These days we also have the soft and gentle entitlement gurus.  That would be the salespeople who have obtained your phone number or email and keep on infusing you with messages, advertising, and special deals on all kinds of things that you just didn’t know you needed.  They act as if they are entitled to your time, your inbox,  and hopefully your money.

Hence, the young clerk at the cash register of the local store where you are buying an over-priced t-shirt made in a developing country for pennies, feels entitled to ask you in a loud voice so everyone can hear: your address please, your phone number, and your email, etc.  And when or if you say, I don’t like to give out all of this information, I just want to buy this t-shirt,  they look at you like you have horns on your head.  In fact, you look like you are being rude! 

When you say no to the entitled of this world, they don’t like it and it is highly probable that they will try to make you look like the bad guy. It is a great strategy and it works for them.  However, if you’ve had enough, you no longer want to be stepped on or even gently be pecked at, you can politely remove yourself from all those email lists and refuse to give out information or even say no to anyone who wants a piece of you.

It can be done without drama (you don’t have to slide out of a plane or yell out any expletives).  It is called reclaiming your own power.  And when you do, you’ll feel wonderful.

Points and questions to ponder:

1)    Take some time to observe your life and your interactions with others.  Do you mostly approach life and people as if they are there for your needs?  Examine the way you treat service people (waiters, sales clerks, etc.), do you treat them like they are someone to go through to get to what you want (dinner, your dry cleaning, etc.)?  Do you pretend to be interested in them to develop a relationship, so you can do business with them later on? Are you ever really interested in connecting with the people you come across in life?

2)    Have you ever been taken advantage of by someone else?  How did that make you feel?  What did you do about it?  How would you have like to have behaved?  What will you do the next time someone tries to feed off of you? 

3)    When and whom do you say no to?

If you are ready to reclaim your own power in all areas of your life, and think that you might need some help, contact me so we can talk and you can determine if a spiritual life coach could help you on your journey of empowerment.

No comments: