Shedding the Entitlement Mentality


There is a dangerous threat to the well-being of our society: a strong sense of entitlement embedded deeply into many of us.

This mentality breeds arrogance and an immature inability to accept responsibility, so much so that one thread of this mindset has been dubbed ‘affluenza,’ a condition that was enough for a teenage boy in Texas to avoid jail time after, in December, he caused an accident that killed four people.

The entitlement mentality acts as a veil between us and our elders, a filter that transforms them into people below us in our eyes. Even more, it has taught us how to be excellent at blaming everyone but ourselves.

Symptoms of entitlement disorder include a lack of simple manners and courtesy, an inability to take responsibility for one’s errors, and an expectancy of instant gratification.

We can tie the pervasiveness of entitlement to a lot of factors: bad parenting, access to technology, the influence of the media–regardless, this entitlement mentality is strong especially in teenagers, especially in modern society. Since we’re the teenagers with such an attitude, we’re the ones who wield the power to change it.

In Philippians 2, Paul says that in humility, we must value others above ourselves.

To consider others better than ourselves would mean we would want to sacrifice our comfort for the sake of another’s, we would seek to recognize when we have done wrong–we would even desire to try to rectify our mistakes. Humility seems like such a revolutionary concept for a generation whose morals have been warped in self-interest.

 But imagine a society infected by a different kind of disease. Its symptoms include more random acts of kindness, fewer divorces, and the pending elimination of world hunger. If our generation decided to shed its entitlement attitude in exchange for one that is humble, putting others ahead of ourselves, rather than be the group of society known for being recklessly arrogant, we could be a model of selflessness and humility; furthermore, we could plant seeds of change as so many of the world’s problems are tied to greed and selfishness, the products of an entitlement mentality.