21 Signs Of A Self-Entitled Person (2024) & How To Deal With Them

This guide reveals the 21 most common signs that someone is self-entitled.

In my role as a life coach, I am often helping people better understand themselves and the people around them. 

Self-entitlement is a topic that comes up now and again. That’s why I’m excited to share this guide with you. So, let’s dive in.

Self-Entitled Meaning

Self-entitled means thinking one has a right to specific benefits or privileges.

Self-Entitled Person

If someone calls you self-entitled, it means they think you believe you deserve certain privileges or benefits.

Self-Entitled Example

An awareness of self-entitled behavior will help you spot the self-entitled people in this world. So, here are some examples of behavior you might expect from a self-entitled person.

  • They demand that the group goes to their favorite restaurant for dinner, even if everyone else wants to go somewhere different. 
  • They demand to go backstage after the concert, even if they don’t have backstage tickets. 
  • They interrupt someone they recognize even if that person is clearly busy.
  • Their feelings are hurt when they’re not chosen for a special award or reward, regardless of the effort that the winner put in.

Essentially, someone with a sense of entitlement believes the world owes them good things, regardless of what they have done to earn it.   

21 Signs Of Self-Entitlement

The more of these signs you spot in yourself or someone else, the more entitled you’d be to call someone self-entitled.

1. They’re Convinced Your Priorities Are More Important   

Everyone in this world has needs and desires. Sometimes, someone else’s desires will clash with yours. If you’re convinced your priorities are more important, that’s a key sign you’re an entitled person. 

2. It’s Impossible To Compromise With Them

In a situation where two of you have different desires, a good person will try to find a compromise. If you tend to refuse to compromise, that’s another sign of entitlement.

3. They Set Unrealistic Expectations

When someone sets unrealistic expectations for other people, almsot as if they expect them to bend over backwards, that’s another sign they’re an entitled person. 

4. They Think They Are Better Than Most People 

Self-entitled people tend to see themselves as superior to others.

5. You Think You Deserve Things Wihout Having Earned It

A self-entitled person might say they deserve something without explaining why. At best, they might offer a superficial explanation such as “because I’m special”.

6. They’re Manipulative

When a self-entitled person has unmet expectations, they might resort to manipulation to get what they feel they deserve, such is their self-serving nature. 

7. Drama Surrounds Them

This happens as a result of them thinking they deserve things, and other more sensible people denying them it. Feelings get hurt and anger can explode on both sides when this happens.

8. They Crave Praise And Admiration

Self-entitlement is a common symptom of narcissism. As such, you’ll usually find self-entitled people craving praise and admiration from all angles.

9. They Have No Regard For Someone Else’s Needs

Self-entitled people are rarely interested in someone else’s needs. Their needs come first.  

10. They Think The Rules Don’t Apply To Them

A self-entitled person will tend to think they’re above the rules and entitled to break them. 

11. They Talk About Themselves

Self-entitled people tend to dominate a conversation talking about their own life, their own thoughts or their own interests. They feel entitled to everyone’s attention when they talk, no matter how interesting the topic is to other people. 

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12. They’re Argumentative

Some people have such an inflated sense of entitlement that they’ll argue with anyone who tries to suggest they don’t deserve something.

13. They Think They Know Better

A self-entitled person might not know better than anyone else, but they’ll tend to act as if they do just to get their own way.

14. They Don’t Own Their Mistakes

It’s rare that you’ll find a self-entitled person admitting they’re wrong, apologising or trying to make up for their mistakes.

15. They Think They Deserve Special Treatment

They will request preferential treatment, because they think they should be treated better than others. They think their own needs are more pressing than anyone else’s, so they should be treated differently.  

16. They Adopt A “My Way Or The Highway” Attitude

This is a common negotiation tactic among self-entitled people. If they don’t get what they want, they’ll take their toys and go home.

17. They ‘Punish’ People

A common trait among people with a particularly inflated sense of entitlement is to punish people who don’t give them what they want. The worst thing is: some of these people aren’t even aware it’s wrong. They feel entitled to treat people this way.

18. You Have No Moral Or Ethical Boundaries

Another trait among those with a huge sense of entitlement. There are people who will have no moral or ethical boundaries setting their behavior, as long as they get what they want.

19. You Take Your Relationships For Granted

Many self-entitled people see their friends and family members who will always be there for them, regardless of how one-sided these relationships become.

20. They Don’t Listen To Others

Self-entitled people aren’t known for listening to criticism or taking onboard any feedback that doesn’t make them feel good.

21. They Don’t Have A Lot Of Friends 

Their sense of entitlement and self-serving behavior drives a lot of their friends away.  

Related Content: Do Narcissists Feel Guilt? 4 Key Insights

Frequently Asked Questions About Self-Entitlement

Let’s round off his article with the answers to some frequently asked questions about self-entitled people.

Is There A Word Self-Entitled?

Self-entitled doesn’t appear to be in the dictionary, but it’s a commonly used phrase. 

What Makes A Person Entitled?

Self-entitlement begins in childhood for most people. If a child’s parents give them everything they want throughout their adolescent lives, it’s common for them to continue expecting everything to be handed to them in adulthood.

This is why parents are encouraged to set boundaries when dealing with their children. Indeed, children with strict parents grow up with the belief that they have to work hard for what they want in their life. They certainly won’t think they deserve special treatment above other people.  

It’s also possible to develop a sense of entitlement to grow later in life. Let’s say someone experiences a degree of success and begins to surround themselves with ‘yes men’, they might start believing the world owes them whatever they think they deserve.

That’s why it’s important for people to surround themselves with level-headed people to keep their feet on the ground, even after they strike some success.  

How Do You Deal With Self-Entitled?

The best solution is not dealing with them. Sometimes, that’s not possible or suitable though, if they’re your co-workers for example. At the very least, don’t cave into the demands driven from their sense of self-entitlement.

You can try to talk some sense into them, but don’t expect them to listen. Few people will admit to having a huge sense of entitlement. They’ll rebrand their stinky attitude as self-confidence or self-love instead. This may be their actual understanding, or a way of rationalising their mindset.    

Such people will learn more of a lesson if they lose out on certain things, such as your friendship. It’s only when their lives become more difficult as a result of their self-entitlement that these self-centered people might consider changing their ways. 

Keep your emotions in check when dealing with self-entitled people. Your anger or sad feelings will rarely matter to them. Just keep your cool and walk out of their life. 

Related Content: How To Emotionally Detach From A Narcissist     

Self-Entitled Synonym

There aren’t too many words with the same meaning as self-entitled. The closest would be spoiled. 

Opposite Of Self-Entitled

Antonyms of self-entitled include selfless, modest and caring.

What’s The Difference Between Entitlement And Confidence?

Confident people have a strong belief in their ability to earn something. Entitled people believe they deserve it already.

You may notice that sports teams who underestimate and lose to underdog opponents will often  be accused of entitlement.

The heavy favorites felt entitled to win without putting in effort. Meanwhile, the underdogs were confident in their ability to overcome their opponents if they perform to their best. One is a winner’s mentality. The other is a sheer lack of respect for the opponent.

Related Content: Facts About The Difference Between Ego and Pride  

Is Self-Entitlement Wrong?

It’s wrong in the sense that it’ll stop people liking you. It will also dissuade you from working hard to earn good things in life.

Both of these scenarios will usually mean you don’t get all the great things you could have got out of life.   

Any More Questions About Self-Entitled People?

Thanks for reading my guide on self-entitlement.

It would benefit these people to work with a therapist or a life coach, but sadly most entitled people don’t tend to believe there’s anything wrong with them.

If you’d like to ask a question or offer some final thoughts on this topic, you can do so in the comments section below. 

Feel free to share your opinions, whether or not you feel the same way as me about self-entitlement. 

It would be great to hear from you.

About The Author

Bijan Kholghi is a certified life coach with the Milton Erickson Institute Heidelberg (Germany). He helps clients and couples reach breakthroughs in their lives by changing subconscious patterns. His solution-oriented approach is based on Systemic- and Hypnotherapy.