I was reflecting on an innocuous situation that made me feel irritated. This was curious, and on some reflection I asked myself the question – was I entitled to get what I wanted, or had I not yet earned it?
This led me to reflecting on what is happening in the world, what I see in business, and what gets people stuck in their lives. Are we feeling that we are entitled to something, and being frustrated because we are not getting it?
Sometimes we all fall into the trap of feeling entitled.
We feel that – for whatever reason – we deserve something.
We might feel we are entitled to certain customers. We might feel entitled to a response, a personal freedom, a promotion, an opportunity, a return on our efforts. We might even feel we are entitled to likes on our posts, or the ability to say and do things that harm others
The universe owes us nothing. Your customer don’t care what you feel entitled to. Nor do people who are disenfranchised by your words or behaviours.
The real question is what have you earned?
When you earn something, what you get is a consequence of the effort and strategies that you employ. What you get is conferred upon you, rather than you demanding and taking it. You earn a customer’s loyalty. You earn a reprieve. You earn the freedom to operate. You earn the right to act in society by your contribution to that society.
When you earn it, you can take credit for your effort and gratitude for what you receive in return. When you are entitled and just expect it, you act as if the world owes you something for nothing.
Over time it is easy to build up beliefs that because of who you are, you deserve something. Culture and habit have a big part to play in this expectation. These beliefs only keep you stuck.
When you feel that you are entitled to something, perhaps you could ask “what would I need to do to earn this” instead?
When you change your focus, and realise that the effort you make to earn your outcomes is completely on you, you get the chance to approach your life differently. Imagine if we all took this stance – how different the world would be.
(I am not entitled to your feedback or comments, but I hope I have earned your attention for a few moments and have engaged you with these ideas. You comments are always welcomed!)