Whose responsibility is it that you are happy?
We live in a culture that has slid ever so gradually year-by-year into an entitlement mentality. Even if you know better, it sneaks up on you. Try signing up for college…you’ll be bombarded with “get-it-free-from-the-government” programs. It seems no one realizes anymore that it is noble to pay for things you want with the money you earned!
I have a chart that hangs on a wall in my home:
It is my responsibility to create a meaningful life that I enjoy:
From time to time, I print off copies of this chart to use as a goal brainstorm worksheet for a family meeting: “just choose one thing in each category that you want to do to improve your life and happiness”. Thinking about how to make your own life better in each area helps reinforce the realization that “if it’s going to be, it’s up to me!” Which is the opposite of entitlement.
Freedom entails responsibility. Each entitlement freebie we allow into our life costs us a little freedom. I think it is good training for kids to hear from their parents that there is no free lunch—that we should work for what we get. That is what it means to be a responsible adult in a free nation. Our happiness is our own responsibility.