trueBy Slyvia Juuko
You have probably experienced this at work or in your household. You may be a culprit or have encountered people who wear this entitlement mentality on their sleeves. They declare thus: “You owe me! I’m entitled to this. I deserve to have this now.”
In some cases, the entitlement attitude is often used as an excuse to justify inability to act and change our current financial circumstances.
Do not get me wrong, some people find themselves in circumstances where they could argue that they deserve to get what is reportedly owed to them from Government, employer or parents.
That notwithstanding, this mentality has been stretched to a level where it has become an excuse for our actions or inactions. Below are some of the tell tale signs of an entitlement attitude.
Living beyond your means
Everyone believes that they deserve the perks of life after all, we work hard for this income. However, if you choose to own expensive liabilities purchased through costly loans in order to impress people who do not care to simply show that you have arrived, you are a culprit.
This mentality will compel you to spend income on acquiring things that make you feel wealthy as opposed to saving and investing to accumulate and sustain wealth.
Given the financial pressures, you blame your employee for paying peanuts and not providing incentives to motivate you. You attribute your financial woes to the high cost of credit from your financial institution.
You also blame your current financial status to the lack of funds that have constrained your efforts to start a business venture. You strongly believe that if your company or Government set up a fund, you would benefit be able to transform your life.
Your parents have handed you all you ever wanted or desired in your life. Consequently, you take things for granted and fail to outgrow this to strike out on your own.
You lack a sense of urgency in all you do and as a result fail to deliver on all the tasks assigned. As an adult, the income you earn is probably not sufficient for the lifestyle you are accustomed to, so you resort to borrowing from friends or occasionally get handouts from your parents.
In some instances, you borrow from peers with no intention of paying back, after all you deserve it. While parents have the right to support their children, cases where it wasn’t done in moderation resulted in a generation that cannot survive without the financial ‘umbilical cord’.
Acquiring money by unlawful means
Some people feel that while they have given their all to Government or other employers, it has not been reflected in their remuneration. As a result, they resort to ‘cutting corners’ to get money that they are ‘entitled to.’
Others feel that given the so called sacrifice, they are entitled to ‘compensation’ in form of short changing people or companies for personal gain.
All the above excuses notwithstanding, building or creating wealth sustainably cannot be achieved with such a mindset. Experts will tell you that the greatest work as far as wealth creation is concerned lies with the mindset. A shift in mindset is crucial for you to appreciate and use what you have to be able to take advantage of opportunities that will grow your money.
An entitlement mindset could be holding you back from thinking hard and motivating yourself to take advantage of the information and resources within your reach. You cannot claim you are entitled to a favour when you are doing nothing to take control and turn around your financial situation.
Getting rid of the notion of entitlement will make you appreciate the fact that genuine accumulation of wealth takes time, hard work, perseverance and knowledge among other things and not handouts or get rich quick schemes.
The writer works with Bank of Uganda