Have you ever thought that the world wasn’t fair? That you deserved better? People ought to treat you better? You ought to have more money? You ought to have a gorgeous boyfriend or girlfriend?
If you have, chances are you have an entitlement attitude. I’m going to give you 2 tests to test your attitude.
Test 1 For An Entitlement Attitude: Whose Fault Is It?
When something goes wrong, who’s to blame? What percentage of the fault goes to others and what percentage are you responsible for?
- 100% others vs. 0% you?
- 80% others vs. 20% you?
- 50% others vs. 50% you?
- 40% others vs. 60% you?
There’s no right answer but think about this: the more you blame others and the less you take responsibility, the more likely you have an entitlement attitude.
If lost $10,000 in a bad investment, was it your fault for not checking to make sure the investment was solid or was it your broker’s fault for giving you bad advice?
If you got pulled over by the police, was it your fault for speeding or was it their fault because they’re just hassling you?
If your boyfriend or girlfriend doesn’t treat you the way you want, is it your fault for not communicating your expectations and/or staying with them or is it their fault?
Now I’m not saying you can do anything in every situation. But usually, you have the ability to make changes.
Test 2 For An Entitlement Attitude: How Do You React?
So lets say something goes wrong. What do you do? Do you get angry or bitter? Do you resent the people you feel responsible?
Take all the situations above and ask yourself how you’d react? If you lost $10,000, would you get angry? If you get pulled over by the police, do you get bitter? If your loved one doesn’t treat you right, do you get passive aggressive?
So take a minute and review your past week. What things went wrong? How much of it was someone else’s fault and how much of it was yours? How did you react?
As they say in drug rehab:
The first step is admitting there’s a problem.
If you have an entitlement attitude, recognize that you have one and work on changing it.
Step 1 For Changing An Entitlement Attitude
Take ownership of everything. Everything that happens starting from today is your responsibility. If something doesn’t happen the way you want, ask yourself what you could’ve done different.
Did you get into a fender bender (i.e. car accident)? Take ownership of that and recognize that you’re responsible. And ask yourself what you could’ve done different to avoid the accident.
Did you not get that promotion? Take ownership of that and recognize that you’re responsible. And ask yourself what you could’ve done differently to win that promotion.
You own everything, the good, the bad, and especially the ugly.
Do you not make enough money? Take ownership of that and recognize that you’re responsible. And ask yourself what you could do differently today to make more money.
Step 2 For Changing An Entitlement Attitude
Be grateful. Be thankful for everything around you. Cultivate an attitude of gratefulness.
Did you know if you have shoes, you live in the top 10% of the rich in this world? Did you know if you know you’ll eat tomorrow, you live in the top 3%? No matter how badly you have it, if you’re reading, someone has it far, far worse than you. I promise.
If you’re a 3 on a scale from 1-5, you’re just mediocre. If you’re a 3 on a scale from 1-1,000, you’re near the top.
Make it daily ritual to recognize how good you have it. Cultivate thankfulness.
Start by thanking everyone for their service, you mom and dad, your co-workers and boss, the janitor who empties your trash at your desk, the clerk at a store you visit, your server at a restaurant, everyone.
Start to develop an appreciation for other people’s work, contribution, value as human beings.
Seriously, you can’t have an entitlement attitude and be grateful at the same time. That’s like saying a fountain has salt water and fresh water.
Why You Should Drop An Entitlement Attitude
Having an entitlement attitude is like having an anchor that’ll stop you from accomplishing anything. You’ll only focus on what you deserve to get and why the world has screwed you over.
But by changing your focus to what you can do, you change the rules of the game. Instead of you being a helpless victim, you rise up and empower yourself to make real changes in your life for your good.
Like anything, it takes time to change a bad habit and it’s no different for this. Dedicate 90 days to daily grabbing ownership and nurturing gratitude and I guarantee that you’re well on your way to achieving what you want.