How to Deal With Entitled People (10+ Techniques & Examples)

Ever felt like you’re walking on eggshells around someone who acts as if the world revolves around them? Don’t worry; you’re not the only one. We’ve all bumped into this type of person — those who think they’re more important than anyone else.

Handling conversations with such self-important people can feel like walking through a dangerous zone — it’s unpredictable and challenging. They can annoy you, disturb your peace, and often leave you scratching your head in disbelief. But you know what? There’s a way to manage this madness.

In this article, we’ll identify their traits and behaviors and unlock effective techniques for dealing with entitled people. We’ll turn those tough interactions into easy situations. Let’s get started!

Understanding Entitlement

Entitlement, in the context of personality traits, refers to a pervasive sense of deservingness. Entitled individuals operate under the belief that they are special and superior and hence, are owed certain rights and privileges beyond those afforded to their peers. 

This sense of entitlement can range from healthy self-respect and boundary-setting to a detrimental, excessive form that strains relationships and disrupts social harmony.

In its healthier forms, entitlement can manifest as a self-assured assertion of one’s rights. These individuals respect themselves, understand their worth, and aren’t afraid to demand fair treatment. But like a double-edged sword, when it tips over into excessive entitlement, it becomes a destructive force.

They may employ manipulation to ensure their needs are met, even at the expense of others. Inflexibility, unreasonableness, and an aversion to accepting responsibility for their actions are also typical markers.

“Entitled” people embody a belief system rooted in an inflated sense of deservingness and superiority. This perception often leads to behaviors prioritizing their needs, wants, and desires above others.

However, with self-awareness, empathy, and a commitment to change, these individuals can learn to balance their needs with those of others, fostering healthier interpersonal dynamics.

Entitlement Mentality And Causes

The entitlement mentality can stem from various factors, including:

Childhood UpbringingIf parents consistently cater to their child’s every whim or fail to instill in them the importance of gratitude and humility, the child may develop an entitlement mentality.
Social and Cultural FactorsSocietal norms and messages from the media can contribute to a person’s sense of entitlement. For example, wealth and materialism can lead individuals to believe they are entitled to have more than others.
Life ExperiencesAccumulated experiences, such as success or privilege, can reinforce the belief that one is entitled to a higher status.

Personality Traits And Disorders

Entitled behavior can be related to certain personality traits and disorders. One of the most common disorders associated with entitlement is narcissistic personality disorder. Individuals with this disorder may possess an inflated sense of self-importance, lack empathy, and believe they are worthy of admiration and special treatment. 

However, it is important to note that not all individuals with entitled behavior have a personality disorder. Entitlement can also be connected to traits such as:

  • Arrogance: Believing oneself to be superior to others can contribute to a sense of entitlement.
  • Lack of empathy: Struggling to understand others’ feelings can make entitled individuals less considerate of others’ needs.
  • Self-centeredness: Focusing on oneself rather than others may lead to a heightened sense of entitlement.

Understanding entitlement requires recognizing the behaviors, mentality, and potential personality traits associated with it. By doing so, effective strategies can be developed to address and manage encounters with entitled individuals.

How to Recognize Entitled People

Entitled people can be found in various aspects of life, such as relationships, friendships, family, and the work environment. Recognizing their traits and behaviors is essential to effectively deal with them.

In Relationships And Love

At the heart of a healthy relationship is the balance of give and take. In contrast, relationships involving entitled people often tip this balance. Entitled individuals prioritize their needs, desires, and feelings over their partners, creating an unhealthy dynamic that could foster resentment and discord.

Let’s uncover some of the common signs of entitled people in relationships:

  • High demand for attention: Entitled individuals may relentlessly need affirmation and attention. If their partner’s focus drifts elsewhere, they might react negatively.
  • Unrealistic expectations: They often set high, even unreasonable, expectations for their partners. They may demand their needs be met without having to articulate them.
  • Absence of reciprocity: Entitled people are often more focused on receiving than giving. They might overlook their partner’s needs or fail to reciprocate in kind.
  • Difficulty accepting ‘No‘: They may struggle with rejection or refusal and could resort to manipulation or guilt-tripping to get their way.
  • Shirking responsibility: Entitled individuals often evade accountability for their actions or words. They might play the victim or shift blame to others for their own shortcomings.
For example: Let's consider Alex and Jamie's relationship. Alex feels increasingly drained by Jamie's continuous demands. Jamie expects Alex to always be available, prioritizes their own needs without considering Alex's, and disregards Alex's need for personal space and time.

When Alex expresses concern over their relationship's imbalance, Jamie dismisses it, stating that they "deserve" this level of attention and care. Furthermore, Jamie never takes responsibility for any issues that arise, often pinning the blame on Alex instead. This scenario typifies an entitled person in a relationship.

Friends And Family

Entitled individuals may also be present within one’s circle of friends and family. They may habitually place their needs above others.

Here are some signs to watch for:

  • High expectations: They might set high and often unreasonable, expectations from their loved ones. These could involve expecting others to always agree with them or constantly prioritizing their needs.
  • Ignoring boundaries: They may tend to disrespect personal boundaries, which could manifest as intruding on others’ privacy, ignoring personal limits, or neglecting to consider others’ comfort levels.
  • Time insensitivity: They may undervalue others’ time, expecting others to adhere to their schedules or whims. They might be regularly late for appointments or break commitments, assuming others will simply accommodate.
  • Manipulative behavior: They often resort to emotional manipulation to get their way. This could include guilt-tripping, gaslighting, or using passive-aggressive tactics.
  • Lack of gratitude: If a person rarely expresses appreciation for others’ actions, efforts, or time, this can be a sign of entitlement. They might take your efforts for granted as if they’re just expected.
  • They regularly play the victim: Entitled individuals often play the victim, blaming others for their own mistakes or shortcomings. They are unlikely to take responsibility for their actions.
For example: Lisa and Rachel have been close friends since college. However, recently, Lisa has noticed a change in their dynamic. Rachel often expects Lisa to drop her plans to hang out with her at the last minute, disregarding Lisa's own schedule. Rachel constantly talks about her problems during their meetups, showing little interest in Lisa's life or issues.

On occasions when Lisa gently refuses Rachel's demands due to prior commitments, Rachel reacts by implying that Lisa is being an uncaring friend. She rarely takes responsibility for any strain in their relationship, frequently pinning the blame on Lisa.

Career And Work Environment

In the workplace, entitled colleagues or supervisors may demand respect without earning it, which can negatively impact the overall work environment.

Here are some specific signs:

  • Inability to handle criticism: Entitled individuals often struggle with accepting constructive feedback. They may react defensively or even aggressively to criticism.
  • Disregard for rules and procedures: They might consistently flout rules, policies, or procedures, believing they’re exempt from the norms that apply to others.
  • Lack of team spirit: Entitled individuals often lack the commitment to team objectives, focusing instead on their own achievements. They may refrain from actively participating in group activities or show reluctance in collaborative tasks.
  • Unappreciative of others’ efforts: They might fail to appreciate or acknowledge their colleagues’ hard work and contribution. This could be because they believe their work or effort is superior.
  • Resistance to change: They may resist changes or improvements that require them to adapt or put in additional effort, even if these changes are for the greater good of the organization.
  • Overstepping professional boundaries: Entitled individuals often have difficulty respecting professional boundaries. This could manifest as intrusive behavior, such as meddling in others’ tasks or being overly personal.
  • Demanding rapid advancements: They might expect quick promotions or increments without necessarily having the accomplishments or skill set to warrant them. They believe they deserve career advancement based on their presence rather than merit.
For example: Meet Mark, a team member in a software development company. Mark frequently demands to work from home even when his physical presence is required for team meetings. He often disregards company policies, arguing they shouldn't apply to him due to his "experience and seniority."

When a project faces difficulties due to his oversight, Mark quickly shifts blame to his teammates, avoiding any accountability. He often struggles to accept feedback, viewing it as a personal attack rather than an opportunity for growth.

Effective Techniques to Deal with Entitled People in Your Life

Now that we’ve untangled the intricate web of entitlement and understand its characteristics, it’s time to pivot toward solution-oriented strategies.

1. Set Boundaries

Setting clear boundaries is a powerful tool when navigating interactions with entitled individuals. These boundaries act like invisible lines that mark the limits of acceptable behavior. 

By defining what is and isn’t acceptable, you foster a space of mutual respect where your needs and feelings are acknowledged and respected. The beauty of boundaries is that they provide clarity and cultivate healthier relationships over time.

To effectively set boundaries, embark on a journey of self-reflection. Identify your limits:

  • What behavior do you find acceptable? 
  • What makes you uncomfortable or stressed? 

This could range from not accepting calls from a particular person during your personal time to not allowing someone to belittle your opinions during conversations. Once you’ve defined your boundaries, the next step is clear communication. It’s crucial to convey your limits to the entitled person without ambiguity. 

You might say, “I appreciate our conversations, but I would prefer if we could respect each other’s viewpoints without resorting to personal attacks.” It’s essential to remain firm yet respectful when stating your boundaries.

Remember that consistency is key. Boundaries are not effective if they’re only enforced sporadically. If a boundary is crossed, gently but firmly reinforce it. 

Let’s consider a situation where a friend, who has a tendency towards entitlement, has a habit of monopolizing your time with their problems, leaving you drained. A clear boundary here might be setting specific times for these discussions. 

You could communicate this by saying:

I value our friendship and want to support you, but I can’t always be available to discuss your issues. Let’s set aside specific times for these conversations that work for both of us.

By doing this, you establish a clear boundary, communicate it effectively, and respectfully stand your ground.

2. Be Assertive

This skill is valuable when dealing with entitled individuals, as it allows you to stand your ground and express your viewpoint without inciting unnecessary conflict or disrespecting the other person’s rights.

To be assertive, you’ll need to master clear and direct communication. One helpful technique in assertive communication is using “I” statements. These allow you to express your feelings and needs without blaming or criticizing the other person, thus reducing the potential for conflict. 

Instead of saying, “You never listen to me,” which can sound accusatory, say, “I feel unheard when my ideas are not considered.” This puts the focus on your feelings, making it less likely to trigger defensive reactions.

Tip: When using "I" statements, always start with "I feel..." followed by the emotion you're experiencing, then describe the specific situation causing this emotion. It helps to keep the communication clear and centered on your perspective, avoiding blaming language.

Consider a workplace situation where a colleague with a strong sense of entitlement regularly takes credit for your ideas. An assertive response might be:

I noticed that during the last team meeting, you presented my ideas as your own. I feel overlooked when this happens. Moving forward, I would appreciate it if my contributions are acknowledged.

This response is firm, clear yet respectful, and directly addresses the issue without escalating conflict.

In addition, here are other strategies you can use to assert yourself effectively:

  • Practice active listening: Assertiveness isn’t just about expressing your needs; it’s also about understanding the needs of others. Active listening shows the other person that you value their input and are open to finding a mutually satisfying solution.
  • Maintain eye contact: Eye contact conveys confidence and shows the other person you’re engaged in the conversation.
  • Use non-defensive body language: How you present yourself physically can say a lot about your assertiveness. Stand or sit upright, keep your arms uncrossed, and lean slightly towards the other person to demonstrate openness and confidence.
  • Speak clearly and calmly: Keep your tone of voice calm and steady. Speaking too softly may undermine your message, while speaking too loudly might appear aggressive.
  • Practice, practice, practice: Like any other skill, assertiveness improves with practice. Look for daily opportunities to assert your needs and rights, and reflect on these experiences to continually refine your technique.

3. Stay Calm And Objective

Interactions with entitled individuals can sometimes be like walking through a minefield of emotions. Their behavior can trigger strong emotional reactions, making it all the more important to maintain your cool and respond objectively. 

This is where emotional intelligence becomes an invaluable ally, enabling you to identify, comprehend, and manage your feelings.

A critical part of emotional intelligence is self-regulation, which is controlling or redirecting disruptive emotions and impulses. By staying calm, you can process the situation logically, communicate more effectively, and avoid turning a difficult interaction into a heated confrontation.

There are several techniques you can employ to help you stay calm and objective:

  • Deep breathing exercises: This can aid in reducing stress and promoting relaxation. When you are in a tense situation, take a moment to breathe deeply, focusing on the inhalation and exhalation. This technique helps to lower your heart rate and calm your mind.
  • Pause before responding: This break allows you to process your thoughts, manage your emotions, and craft a thoughtful, objective response. Remember, the goal is to respond slowly rather than immediately.
  • Mindfulness: By practicing mindfulness, you can prevent yourself from becoming overwhelmed by the situation and maintain a clear, level-headed perspective.
  • Always aim to focus on the behavior rather than the person: By discussing the behavior that’s causing the problem, rather than criticizing the person, you can prevent the conversation from devolving into personal attacks and keep it focused on resolving the issue at hand.

Imagine a family gathering where an entitled relative consistently belittles your career choices. Instead of reacting defensively, you might take a deep breath, allowing yourself a moment to calm any rising anger. 

Then, maintaining a calm demeanor, you might respond:

I understand we have different perspectives on career success. I feel disrespected when my choices are belittled. I would appreciate it if our conversations could be more supportive and understanding of our differences.

In this scenario, you have stayed calm, expressed your feelings assertively, and focused on the problematic behavior, not the person.

4. Don’t Take It Personally

When dealing with entitled individuals, it’s too easy to absorb their negativity and let it affect your self-esteem. However, it’s crucial to remember one key thing: their actions or words reflect their mindset, not a measure of your worth.

Here’s why this distinction matters:

Reflection Of Their Mindset

Entitled individuals typically operate from a worldview that places their needs, desires, and opinions above those of others. Their actions and words manifest this perspective, not a reaction to your value as an individual.

When they make unreasonable demands, dismiss your needs, or fail to acknowledge your efforts, it isn’t a commentary on your capabilities or worth. Instead, it’s a projection of their skewed sense of entitlement. Recognizing this distinction helps ensure that you don’t internalize their negative behavior.

Not A Measure Of Your Worth

Your value as a person is not determined by the behavior of others towards you, especially not entitled individuals. Your worth is inherent and unchangeable, regardless of how others perceive or treat you.

When an entitled individual disregards your needs or overlooks your contributions, it can be easy to question your worth. However, remind yourself that their behavior is not a yardstick for your value. You deserve respect, recognition, and kindness, irrespective of their inability to provide it.

Consider a scenario: Your boss constantly demands more from you, disregards your personal time, and rarely acknowledges your hard work. It's easy to internalize this and start thinking, "Maybe I'm not doing enough," or "Maybe I'm not good enough."

But here's the thing — don't let their entitled behavior define your self-worth. 

Understand that their demanding nature and lack of appreciation are a reflection of their entitlement, not your performance. Instead of doubting your abilities, separate their behavior from your self-perception.

5. Manage Expectations

Managing expectations involves being completely open and clear about your capabilities, capacities, and limitations. This level of transparency sets the ground rules for interaction and can limit opportunities for entitlement to rear its head.

In practice, this might mean directly communicating: 

  • What you can realistically achieve within a given timeframe
  • What resources you have at your disposal
  • What areas are outside of your remit or expertise

Importantly, this approach shouldn’t be seen as defensive or self-limiting; instead, it’s about ensuring that interactions and relationships are founded on understanding mutual capabilities and respect.

Let’s assume you’re leading a project at work, and one team member, known for their entitled behavior, starts to delegate their tasks to others, believing that their role provides them with this privilege. 

To manage expectations, you could hold a team meeting to reiterate everyone’s roles and responsibilities. You might say:

“To ensure we’re all on the same page, I want to revisit our project roles. Each of us has specific tasks that are crucial for the success of this project. We each must focus on our individual responsibilities and refrain from delegating our core tasks to others. This will ensure fair distribution of work and promote teamwork.

In this scenario, you’ve managed expectations by clarifying roles, reinforcing the significance of individual contributions, and addressing the issue of task delegation. This approach can help mitigate entitled behavior, promote fairness, and foster a healthier team dynamic.

6. Differentiate Genuine Needs And Attempts At Manipulation

When managing favors and requests from entitled people, it’s crucial to differentiate between legitimate needs and manipulative demands. Always consider whether the request is reasonable or if the person expects special treatment.

Prioritize requests based on urgency and fairness to avoid feeding into entitled behavior. Here’s how:

  1. Assess the legitimacy of the request: Not all requests from an entitled person stem from entitlement. It’s important to identify if the request is genuine or an attempt to manipulate.
  2. Determine if it aligns with established rules: Check if the request falls within the boundaries or rules that have been previously set. If it goes beyond those, it might be an attempt to gain special privileges.
  3. Check if it’s within your comfort and capacity: Do a quick self-check. Can you fulfill the request without causing undue stress or strain on your resources?
  4. Make a decision and communicate it clearly: Once you’ve assessed the request, decide. Be clear, assertive, and straightforward in your communication, whether you’re agreeing to help or turning down the request.

Stick to your established rules and guidelines, and don’t be afraid to say no when a request is unjust. This will help prevent entitled individuals from taking advantage of your kindness.

7. Reinforce Positive Behavior

Handling entitled individuals is not all about confrontation. In fact, an effective strategy in dealing with entitled individuals involves a less combative yet potentially transformative approach — reinforcing positive behavior.

When an entitled person demonstrates any shift towards considerate behavior, it’s important to acknowledge it and show appreciation. Why? Because when people receive recognition for their good behavior, they are more likely to repeat it.

For example, imagine you have a colleague who constantly demands to be in the limelight during meetings, often overshadowing others’ ideas. Over time, you’ve expressed your concerns about this, focusing on the value of teamwork and shared recognition. 

One day, this colleague steps back, allowing another team member to present an idea without interruption. They even contribute to the discussion in a helpful, non-dominating manner.

This change is an opportunity for positive reinforcement. You might approach your colleague after the meeting and say something like:

Hey, I noticed how you stepped back in the meeting today to let John present his idea. That was really considerate of you, and it led to a great discussion. Thank you for doing that.

By acknowledging and appreciating their improved behavior, you reinforce the action. This makes the colleague feel valued and appreciated, increasing the likelihood they’ll continue this positive behavior in future meetings.

Tip: When reinforcing positive behavior, make sure your appreciation is genuine and specific. Instead of a generic "good job," express precisely what you appreciated and why. It helps the other person understand what behavior was positive and encourages them to repeat it.

8. Choose Your Battles

Interactions with entitled individuals can be as diverse as they are challenging; knowing when to step forward or back can make all the difference. Why? Because not all disagreements or conflicts are worth your time and energy.

Choosing your battles wisely is crucial in effectively dealing with entitled people. This approach allows you to focus on what truly matters while avoiding unnecessary stress and conflict. 

Identify The Issue

The first step to dealing with entitled people is identifying the issue at hand. Is their behavior causing significant harm, or is it just a slight nuisance? This assessment is crucial because it helps you decide whether you need to confront the situation or not.

  • Significant harm: This might mean they’re exploiting others, causing serious conflict, or creating a toxic atmosphere. For instance, if someone frequently demeans others to inflate their self-worth, this issue needs to be addressed.
  • Minor nuisance: On the other hand, minor annoyances may include situations like the individual often bragging about their achievements or always wanting to be the center of attention. While these behaviors can be frustrating, they might not be worth a confrontation.

Evaluate Your Energy

Ask yourself: Is this battle worth my energy and time? Remember, we have a limited amount of both. Spending them on unproductive confrontations might leave you drained and unsatisfied.

  • High energy investment: If the issue involves significant stress and time, it’s worth weighing if it’s genuinely worth the investment. Are the outcomes likely to lead to positive changes? If not, it might be better to redirect your energy elsewhere.
  • Low energy investment: If dealing with the issue requires minimal effort, it may be worth addressing, especially if it could prevent more substantial problems down the line.

Potential Outcomes

Weigh the potential outcomes of your engagement. Could your intervention improve the situation, or would it just escalate the tension?

  • Positive outcomes: If addressing the issue can lead to changes in the entitled person’s behavior, improve your relationship with them, or create a better environment, then it’s worth the battle.
  • Negative outcomes: If addressing the issue might make things worse or won’t result in any positive changes, it’s probably best to let it go.

Know When To Walk Away

Always remember that it’s perfectly okay to walk away. Some battles are not yours to fight, especially when dealing with deeply ingrained entitlement.

  • Respecting your boundaries: If someone constantly disregards your boundaries and makes unreasonable demands, it’s vital to protect your well-being and walk away from the situation.
  • Preserving your peace: When dealing with entitled people, your peace of mind and emotional health should be a priority. If the situation causes excessive stress or emotional turmoil, walking away might be the best option.

9. Change Perceptions And Feedback

Addressing entitled behavior requires not just managing your own responses but also guiding the entitled individuals toward self-awareness. This involves a twofold approach: shifting your perception of them and providing constructive feedback about their behavior.

Changing Perceptions

When we come across entitled people, we usually focus on how they behave—making demands, showing a lack of empathy, or ignoring others. But if we look closer, we might discover that this sense of entitlement often comes from their own insecurities, fears, or past experiences.

They might be trying to control their surroundings or simply not fully grasp the consequences of their actions. This doesn’t excuse their behavior, but it helps us realize that entitlement often has deeper roots.

By keeping this understanding in mind, we can change how we react and feel toward entitled people. Instead of solely seeing their disruptive behavior, we can view them as people shaped by their past and perspectives.

This approach can foster empathy and patience within us. It allows us to respond to their actions with understanding, leading to less stress and more productive interactions.

Providing Constructive Feedback

Offering constructive feedback is a powerful way to shed light on the entitled person’s behavior and its impacts.

For example, if your friend often monopolizes conversations, you might say:

I value our friendship and our conversations, but sometimes, I feel like my opinions and experiences are overlooked. I would appreciate it if our discussions could be more reciprocal.

This doesn’t mean criticizing or blaming but openly discussing the issue respectfully and clearly. The aim is to make them aware of their actions and consequences on others.

Here are some key steps in providing constructive feedback:

  1. Plan ahead: Before providing feedback, take the time to clearly outline what you want to discuss. Think about specific instances of entitled behavior you have observed and how these have affected you or others.
  2. Choose the right time and place: The right setting can significantly affect how your feedback is received. Choose a private, quiet location where the person will be receptive to what you have to say. Additionally, timing is crucial; ensure the person is calm and relaxed.
  3. Offer suggestions for improvement: Constructive feedback isn’t just about highlighting the problem but also about offering potential solutions. If possible, suggest ways the person could behave differently in the future.
  4. Listen and encourage dialogue: After you’ve provided your feedback, give the person a chance to respond. They might have concerns or explanations you hadn’t considered.
  5. Be patient and persistent: Change doesn’t happen overnight. Be patient, and if the behavior continues, persistently provide feedback. The goal is to help them realize the impact of their actions and motivate them to change.

10. Maintain A Healthy Distance

If you’ve tried different strategies, but the person’s entitled behavior persists, it might be time to prioritize your mental health by maintaining a healthy distance. Creating a buffer between yourself and the entitled individual can help minimize the negative impact of their behavior on your well-being. 

This doesn’t necessarily mean completely cutting off the person (though, in some cases, it may be the best solution), but rather limiting your interactions to what’s necessary and avoiding topics or situations that can trigger entitled behaviors.

For instance, suppose you have a friend who consistently takes more from the relationship than they give, always expecting you to adjust your schedule to fit theirs and showing little regard for your needs or feelings. You’ve addressed this issue several times, but they’ve continued their entitled behavior.

In this case, to reduce opportunities for entitled behavior, maintaining a healthy distance could mean: 

  • Reducing the frequency of your meetups
  • Setting firm boundaries for when you’re available
  • Changing the nature of your interactions 

Maintaining this distance might feel difficult, especially if the entitled individual is a long-time friend, family member, or colleague. However, it’s essential to remember that your mental health matters, and sometimes distancing yourself is the best way to protect it. 

You may not control all the events that happen to you, but you can decide not to be reduced by them.

Maya Angelou

When To Seek Professional Help

When everyday strategies don’t work, and your efforts to manage the situation only lead to more stress, it might be time to consider professional help.

Here are some signs that you might need to reach out to a professional:

  1. Persistent stress or anxiety: If interactions with the entitled person leave you feeling constantly stressed or anxious, a professional can provide strategies to help you manage these feelings.
  2. Strain on relationships: If the person’s entitled behavior is significantly straining your personal or professional relationships, a counselor or mediator might be able to help.
  3. Impact on work or personal life: If the entitled individual’s actions negatively impact your work performance or personal life, professional help could provide the tools you need to address the issue effectively.

Options For Professional Help

CounselingTherapists and counselors can provide strategies to cope with the situation, guide in building stronger boundaries and improve communication.
MediationIn some cases, a neutral third-party mediator can help facilitate communication and resolve conflicts effectively between you and the entitled individual.
Support GroupsJoining a support group can provide a sense of community. You can connect with others who are facing similar issues and share experiences and coping strategies.
Did You Know? The practice of mediation dates back to ancient Greece, where mediators were considered peacemakers and were highly regarded in the society.

Frequently Asked Questions

Should I report an entitled colleague at work if their behavior has become problematic?

If their conduct significantly impacts your work environment, consider the following:

– Documenting their behavior and gathering evidence, if necessary.
– Speaking with your supervisor or manager, emphasizing the impact on work productivity.
– Approaching human resources if the issue is not addressed adequately or if the behavior escalates.
– Seeking support from trusted colleagues for additional guidance and strategies.
– Always prioritize your well-being and professional environment while navigating the complexities of workplace relationships.

Is there a difference between entitlement and self-confidence?

Yes, there is a difference between entitlement and self-confidence. They can be differentiated as follows:

Entitlement is characterized by a belief that you deserve special treatment, privileges, or consideration without necessarily putting in the effort to earn it. 

It often involves unrealistic expectations, a lack of respect for others’ needs and boundaries, and a tendency to demand or manipulate others to meet your desires. Entitlement can lead to conflicts in relationships, impediments in personal growth, and an inability to handle disappointments or setbacks.

On the other hand, self-confidence involves a healthy belief in your abilities and self-worth. It is based on a realistic understanding of your strengths and weaknesses and helps you navigate life with a positive, forward-looking attitude. 

Self-confident individuals can advocate for themselves effectively while respecting others’ feelings, needs, and boundaries. This balanced approach allows them to form well-rounded relationships, face challenges, and accomplish personal and professional goals.

In essence, self-confidence is a positive quality that fosters personal growth and balanced relationships, while entitlement tends to be detrimental and disruptive to both individual development and healthy connections with others.

What if setting boundaries leads to an entitled person becoming defensive or aggressive?

If an entitled person reacts negatively to your boundaries, try these steps:

– Remain calm and composed while reinforcing your limits.
– Clarify the reasons behind the boundaries and emphasize mutual benefits.
– Allow time for the person to process the changes.
– Seek the help of a neutral third party if necessary.

What if I identify entitled behavior in myself?

If you notice entitled tendencies within yourself, consider taking these steps to address and modify your behavior:

Acknowledgment: Honestly and openly recognize your entitled tendencies, admitting that there are areas that require improvement.

Seek feedback: Request input from trusted friends, family members, or professionals who can provide constructive criticism and guidance to help you better understand your behavior.

Pursue personal growth: Engage in activities that enhance self-awareness, emotional intelligence, and empathy. Reflect on your actions and their impact on others around you.

Practice humility: Remind yourself of the importance of valuing other people’s needs, opinions, and feelings. Cultivate gratitude for what you have and appreciate the contributions of others in your life.

Remember, identifying and addressing the patterns within yourself is a crucial first step toward personal transformation and growth. Embrace this opportunity for self-improvement and strive to develop healthier, more balanced relationships.

How can I help my children or younger family members develop healthy self-esteem without fostering entitlement?

To foster a balanced sense of self-worth in children and young family members, focus on:

– Praising their efforts and achievements in a genuine and specific manner
– Encouraging emotional intelligence, empathy, and consideration for others
– Teaching responsibility, accountability, and the importance of putting forth effort
– Modeling respectful communication, healthy boundaries, and problem-solving skills


Navigating encounters with entitled individuals can be a daunting task. But armed with the right understanding and strategies — we’re well-equipped to transform these interactions from draining to constructive.

Implementing these techniques doesn’t just aid in dealing with entitled individuals. It also builds emotional intelligence, resilience, and assertiveness — qualities that enhance our relationships across the board. 

Remember, it’s okay to seek professional help when the going gets tough. It takes strength to acknowledge when we need an extra hand.

So, ready to take control of your interactions with the entitled people in your life? Which strategy will you put into action today? It’s your move. Make it count!

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Robby is a multimedia editor at UpJourney with a journalism and communications background.

When she's not working, Robby transforms into an introverted art lover who indulges in her love for sports, learning new things, and sipping her favorite soda. She also enjoys unwinding with feel-good movies, books, and video games. She's also a proud pet parent to her beloved dog, Dustin.