I wasn't sure about publishing this article. I was concerned that it may come across as too harsh or too analytical.
But then I think about the ultimate purpose of my writings and videos: to share and teach what I've learned through my readings, research and experimentation towards helping people achieve success and a high level of performance across all aspects of one's life.
Life is not all "roses and rainbows". Life itself is hard, surviving is hard, but thriving is even harder. So if this helps even 1 person move from "surviving" to "thriving", it would be worth it for me.
And so I have to tell you this: there are 2 words I NEVER came across in any of the 500+ books I've read on the science of human performance or the biographies of the most successful people on our planet.
Those words are: "I DESERVE".
It's actually quite remarkable: you never see a truly successful person attributing their success to "deserving" something.
You will never see an Olympic-level athlete, after training and sacrificing for 4 years, show up and say "I won that medal because I deserve it". No, that athlete will say that "I won that medal because I worked hard, I focused, I pushed, I sacrificed".
In fact, various psychologists highlight that feeling of "entitlement" as a major weakness, one which can often stand in the way of success.
Success requires grit, determination, and focus. It requires a strong sense of perseverance REGARDLESS of the outcome: you just keep pushing forward as hard as you can because of your CONVICTION that you will get the result you're working towards.
A key ingredient to success is feeling that YOU ARE IN CONTROL OF THE OUTCOME.
Why is "I deserve" and the feeling of entitlement enemies of success?
It's because entitlement creates "fragility" in your psyche, your mindset, your beliefs.
When you link a certain outcome (success, money, promotion, etc) to a sense of entitlement ("I deserve it"), you are linking the outcome to something completely outside your control.
If I'm waiting to be rewarded for all my hard work because "I deserve it", I'm trusting the outcome (reward) to the Universe rather than my own actions.
One final thought: behavioral studies have shown that children who grow up in a very financially generous environment often develop that feeling of entitlement. They get used to "deserving" a certain level of success, irrespective of the amount of effort they put into it.
That is one of the reasons why 70% of family businesses fail after the second generation, 88% after the 3rd!!
Many of those children struggle to recover when life "knocks them down" as adults. If they don't get "their way", they get frustrated, they don't know how to deal with the situation.