17 Signs You Are Dealing with a Self-Entitled Person

(Article updated March 8th, 2024)

Have you ever encountered someone who always seems to believe the world owes them a favor? Or perhaps they behave as if they’re the lead character in everyone’s life story? If so, you might just be dealing with a self-entitled individual.

Dive in as we unveil 17 telltale signs of an entitled personality, so you can spot them from a mile away—and perhaps, learn to navigate their unique brand of confidence with grace and tact.

What it Means to Be a Self-Entitled Person

A self-entitled person is someone who believes they deserve certain privileges or advantages without having earned them. This sense of entitlement can manifest in various ways, such as expecting special treatment, feeling entitled to others’ time and attention, or believing that rules and norms do not apply to them.

The psychology behind entitlement is complex and can be influenced by a variety of factors, including upbringing, personality traits, and societal norms. For example, children who are consistently given everything they want without having to work for it may develop a sense of entitlement as they grow older. Similarly, individuals with certain personality disorders, such as narcissistic personality disorder, may exhibit entitlement as a core characteristic.

It is important to note that not all entitlement is negative or harmful. For example, individuals who have worked hard and achieved success may feel entitled to enjoy the fruits of their labor. However, when entitlement becomes excessive or unreasonable, it can lead to negative consequences, both for the entitled individual and those around them.

To better understand entitlement, it can be helpful to identify common behaviors and attitudes associated with it. These may include:

  • Believing that rules and norms do not apply to them
  • Expecting others to cater to their needs and desires
  • Feeling entitled to special treatment or privileges
  • Becoming angry or resentful when they do not get what they feel they deserve
  • Taking credit for others’ work or accomplishments
  • Blaming others for their failures or shortcomings

By recognizing these behaviors and attitudes, individuals can begin to identify and address their own sense of entitlement, as well as recognize it in others.

17 Signs You Are Dealing with a Self-Entitled Person 

1. They think the rules don’t apply to them

A clear sign of a self-entitled person is a consistent disregard for rules. They may feel that rules are arbitrary and don’t need to be followed if it inconveniences them.

This behavior often shows in smaller acts, such as littering or cutting corners at work, but it can extend to more significant breaches of societal expectations.

2. They tend to be self-absorbed

Self-entitled people tend to be self-absorbed, so much so that they forget about others and the needs around them.

They only care about themselves and what they want or need at the time; they don’t think of those who are with them as needing anything too.

3. They can often be argumentative

Self-entitled people are often argumentative because they feel as though their self-worth is more important than what they have to say.

They’ll argue just for the sake of arguing, or even refuse to admit that they were wrong if proven so; self-entitlement can make them very close-minded and stubborn at times.

being self entitled

4. They go out of their way to serve themselves

Self-entitled people tend to be self-serving and think only about what’s best for them, often pushing others aside in order to get it.

They’ll take the last piece of food on a platter if given the chance; self-entitlement can make them very greedy at times.

5. They make demands, not requests

When they want something, self-entitled individuals won’t hesitate to make demands rather than polite requests.

They may feel no qualms about asserting what they believe they are owed, without considering the perspective or limitations of the person they are demanding from.

6. They have an exaggerated sense of self-worth

Self-entitled people often feel as though their self-worth is greater than everyone else’s around them, that they’re better or more important in some way.

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They tend to think highly of themselves and overestimate their abilities; self-entitlement can cause others to view them as arrogant at times.

7. They feel as though they deserve special treatment

Self-entitled people tend to think that self-worth should equal special treatment, whether it’s because of their job title or something else that makes them more important than others around them.

They expect certain things and don’t want to wait in line like everyone else; self-entitlement can make them very impatient at times.

8. They’re often self-centered

Self-entitled people tend to be self-centered, always thinking about their own needs and wants first before anyone else’s; they often think that what others want or need isn’t as important as what they have to say or do.

They can be very self-absorbed at times; self-entitlement makes them egocentric and self-serving.

9. They boast about their achievements

Discussion about achievements is typical in social interactions, but a self-entitled person may excessively brag about their accomplishments, often to the detriment of others’ contributions.

In group settings, they might turn any topic back to their achievements or seek recognition even when it’s not appropriate or relevant to the conversation.

10. They think they know better

Self-entitled people tend to be self-righteous and feel as though what they say is right, regardless of whether or not it’s true.

They may refuse to admit when they’ve done something wrong which in return makes them close-minded; self-entitlement can make them hardheaded at times too.

11. They won’t own up to the mistakes they’ve made

Self-entitled people often won’t take responsibility for their mistakes, even if those around them have been affected by them.

They’ll blame others instead of taking self-accountability; this can make the self-entitled person appear as though they don’t care about what happens to those around them or how things turn out with certain situations that arise in life.

12. They don’t tend to listen to others

Self-entitled people rarely take the time to listen to those around them, self entitlement makes it difficult for these individuals to see things from someone else’s perspective.

They’re often only concerned with their own thoughts and ideas; self-entitlement can make others feel as though they aren’t important enough to be listened to at times.

13. They frequently interrupt others

Self-entitled individuals often believe their words are more important than those of others. Their persistent interruptions can be subtle, like cutting into someone’s sentence, or more overt, like monopolizing conversations entirely.

This behavior stems from a belief that their time and voice are more valuable than anyone else’s, and it can be a good indicator of underlying entitlement issues.

14. They have a “my way or the highway” attitude

Self-entitled people tend to feel as though what they say is right, regardless of whether or not it’s true; and always like to have things go their way. This leaves little room for compromise.

15. Their apologies are short-lived

While they may apologize, these instances are often brief and lack recognition of the impact of their actions. An apology is viewed as a perfunctory act to end the discussion, rather than an expression of genuine remorse.

This lack of follow-through on addressing the offense again highlights their inability to genuinely consider others’ feelings.

16. They often play the victim

When things don’t go their way, self-entitled individuals might adopt a victim mentality. They are quick to attribute blame to external factors or other people, even when the fault may be their own.

This tactic helps reinforce their belief that they deserve more and should be shielded from the consequences of their actions.

17. They think the world revolves around them

Self-entitlement makes it difficult for these individuals to see things from someone else’s perspective at times too; which can make them egocentric and self-serving at times.

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The Common Causes of Self-Entitlement

Entitlement mentality is a personality trait that is influenced by various factors such as parenting styles and societal influences. Below are some of the common causes of entitlement.

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Parenting Styles

Parenting styles play a significant role in shaping a child’s personality. Children who are raised in an environment where they are given everything they ask for without being required to work for it are more likely to develop an entitlement mentality. Such children grow up believing that they are entitled to everything without putting in any effort.

On the other hand, children who are raised in an environment where they are required to work for everything they want are less likely to develop an entitlement mentality. Such children learn the value of hard work and understand that they have to earn what they want.

Societal Influences

Societal influences such as social media, advertising, and peer pressure can also contribute to the development of an entitlement mentality. Social media platforms like Instagram and Facebook often portray a perfect life that is not always attainable. Such images and messages can create unrealistic expectations, leading to a sense of entitlement.

Advertising also plays a significant role in shaping people’s attitudes towards entitlement. Advertisements often promote products that promise instant gratification without any effort. Such messages can create a belief that people are entitled to everything without putting in any work.

Peer pressure can also contribute to the development of an entitlement mentality. Children and teenagers who are surrounded by peers who have an entitlement mentality are more likely to develop the same attitude. They may feel that they are entitled to everything their peers have without putting in any effort.

The Impact of Entitlement on Relationships

Entitlement can have a significant impact on relationships, both personal and professional. This section will explore the effects of entitlement on relationships and how it can damage them.

Personal Relationships

Entitlement in personal relationships can lead to a variety of issues. When one partner feels entitled to certain things, such as attention, affection, or control, it can create a power imbalance in the relationship. This can lead to resentment, anger, and ultimately, the breakdown of the relationship.

One common sign of entitlement in personal relationships is the belief that one’s needs are more important than their partner’s. This can lead to selfish behavior, as the entitled partner may prioritize their own desires over the needs and wants of their significant other. This can create a sense of neglect and frustration in the other partner and can ultimately lead to the breakdown of the relationship.

Another issue that can arise from entitlement in personal relationships is a lack of empathy. Entitled individuals may struggle to understand or relate to their partner’s feelings and needs, leading to a breakdown in communication and emotional connection. This can create a sense of isolation and loneliness in the other partner, ultimately leading to the breakdown of the relationship.

Professional Relationships

Entitlement can also have a significant impact on professional relationships. When an individual feels entitled to certain things, such as promotions, recognition, or special treatment, it can create a toxic work environment and damage relationships with colleagues and superiors.

One common sign of entitlement in the workplace is the belief that one is above the rules or expectations of the job. This can lead to a lack of accountability and responsibility, as the entitled individual may feel that they are exempt from following the same rules and expectations as their colleagues. This can create tension and resentment in the workplace and can ultimately lead to the breakdown of professional relationships.

Another issue that can arise from entitlement in the workplace is a lack of teamwork. Entitled individuals may prioritize their own needs and desires over the needs and desires of the team, leading to a breakdown in collaboration and cooperation. This can create a sense of frustration and resentment in colleagues, ultimately leading to damaged professional relationships.

How To Overcome Entitlement

Entitlement is a common issue that many people struggle with. It can lead to a “me-first” attitude, where individuals believe that the world revolves around them and expect others to defer to their every wish, taste, and desire. However, with some self-awareness and the right tools, it is possible to overcome entitlement and develop healthier relationships with others.

Self-Awareness

The first step in overcoming entitlement is to become more self-aware. This means taking the time to reflect on your thoughts, feelings, and behaviors, and how they may be impacting others. It can be helpful to ask yourself questions like:

  • Do I often put my needs above others?
  • Do I expect others to do things for me without reciprocating?
  • Do I become angry or upset when things don’t go my way?
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By becoming more aware of these tendencies, individuals can start to take steps to change them. This may involve setting boundaries, practicing empathy, and learning to communicate more effectively with others.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is a type of therapy that can be helpful for individuals struggling with entitlement. CBT focuses on changing negative thought patterns and behaviors by identifying and challenging them. It can help individuals develop more positive and realistic ways of thinking about themselves and others.

During CBT, individuals work with a therapist to identify negative thought patterns and behaviors that may be contributing to their sense of entitlement. They then learn strategies to challenge these thoughts and replace them with more positive ones. This can help individuals develop more empathy and compassion for others, and improve their relationships.

Mindfulness

Mindfulness is another tool that can be helpful in overcoming entitlement. Mindfulness involves being present in the moment and paying attention to one’s thoughts and feelings without judgment. It can help individuals become more aware of their entitlement tendencies and learn to manage them more effectively.

Practicing mindfulness can involve a range of techniques, including meditation, deep breathing, and body scanning. By taking the time to focus on the present moment, individuals can develop a greater sense of self-awareness and learn to manage their entitlement tendencies more effectively.

Final Thoughts

Self-entitlement is a growing epidemic in the world today. In the past few years, it’s been used as an excuse for awful behavior and has become one of the most common traits of narcissistic people.

If you’re dealing with someone who exhibits these signs on a regular basis, take note and decide if you want this person to remain in your life.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are some examples of toxic entitlement?

Toxic entitlement is a behavior that involves an individual feeling that they deserve special treatment, privileges, or recognition without putting in the effort or work to earn it. Some examples of toxic entitlement include expecting promotions or raises without demonstrating exceptional work performance, demanding others to cater to their needs without reciprocating, and feeling that they are above the rules or standards set for everyone else.

What is the term for a person who feels entitled?

The term for a person who feels entitled is an “entitled person.” Entitled individuals believe that they deserve special treatment or privileges without putting in the effort or work to earn it. This belief can lead to a sense of superiority, entitlement mentality, and a lack of empathy for others.

What are the characteristics of a narcissistic sense of entitlement?

A narcissistic sense of entitlement is characterized by a belief that one is superior to others and therefore deserves special treatment, privileges, and recognition. Individuals with this sense of entitlement may display a lack of empathy for others and disregard for rules and standards set for everyone else. They may also have an inflated sense of self-importance and demand constant attention and admiration from others.

What are some common behaviors of entitled individuals?

Common behaviors of entitled individuals include demanding special treatment or privileges, expecting others to cater to their needs without reciprocation, disregarding rules and standards set for everyone else, and displaying a lack of empathy for others. They may also have an inflated sense of self-importance, a need for constant attention and admiration, and a belief that they are above criticism or consequences for their actions.

How can you effectively deal with someone who feels entitled?

To effectively deal with someone who feels entitled, it is essential to set boundaries and establish clear expectations. Communicate your limits and expectations clearly and firmly, and do not allow others to push or overrun them. It is also important to avoid engaging in power struggles or arguments with entitled individuals, as this can reinforce their sense of superiority. Instead, remain calm, assertive, and consistent in your boundaries and expectations.

What is an entitlement mentality in a relationship?

An entitlement mentality in a relationship is characterized by one or both partners feeling that they deserve special treatment, privileges, or recognition without putting in the effort or work to earn it. This mentality can lead to a lack of reciprocity, a sense of superiority, and a lack of empathy for the other partner’s needs and feelings. It is essential to establish clear expectations and boundaries in a relationship to avoid an entitlement mentality and promote mutual respect and reciprocity.