When you hear the word "entitlement", what comes to mind? Aloof, affluent young adults with arrogant attitudes? A rich person who's a "taker" in life?
In his somewhat lengthy essay below, Matthew Wesley argues for a less judgmental view of affluent "entitled" individuals (as opposed to those on the opposite end of the economic spectrum). He points to a broader consideration of the Millennial generation, the endless choices available to them, and how those choices define, in Wesley's view, their identities (i.e., who they are). He draws a parallel between the over-abundance of choices facing the Millennial generation and the plethora of choices that younger members of affluent families have and concludes that these individuals are like others of their generation. In following Wesley's thinking, I'm reminded of many conversations I've had with clients and wealthy individuals about the advantages of wealth. In many of those conversations, the conclusion has been that wealth creates more and better options and choices.
Thus, because Wesley views "entitlement" as a developmental stage in an affluent young adult's life – one that is influenced more by generational forces than affluence itself – he recommends that those who work with these young adults should focus on helping them build a "focused sense of self".
"…if young adults in their twenties spend time building identity capital, they are likely to be quite successful both in the intermediate and longer term. Postponing the development of these competencies and connections often leads to the drift we have come to call “entitlement”."
If a young person were to embrace The Empowered Wealth Mindset – especially with our emphasis on Gratitude – to filter and interpret life's experiences, to guide their thinking and their actions, and to ultimately become their mature way of being, I can't help but believe that "entitlement" might be less of a challenge to their long-term sustainable prosperity.
There is a major concern I see many people express around the effects of wealth on both younger and adult children. This most charitably is spoken of in terms of “entitlement” but often is called …
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