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The Minimalists

Joshua Fields Millburn & Ryan Nicodemus write about living a meaningful life with less stuff for 2 million readers. As featured on: CBS, BBC, NPR, Forbes, The Atlantic, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Boston Globe, Chicago Tribune, and National Post. They live in Missoula, Montana.

Because I Deserve It!

ice cream

We all want to make good choices, the correct selection, the most righteous decision. It goes without saying.

But of course our impulsive, mammalian brains like to get in the way and muck it all up, don’t they? Which means that instead of relying on reason and data and facts, we seek to validate our bad decisions via any-means-necessary-type justification.

One of the worst forms of this kind of rationalization is Because I deserve it!

Unfortunately, we’ve gotten good at using this excuse to push aside logic and give grounds for our screw ups. This sense of entitlement is a slippery slope, though.

Sometimes the excuse is benign (at least initially): After my long day, I deserve an ice cream cone! Sure, most of us won’t experience negative effects from a single dessert. But this fact is quickly torpedoed when one cone turns into two, which turns into four, and so forth. After all, if you deserve one treat, why not more? Why not every day?

Even if you do deserve it, or even if the decision is the right one, there’re myriad good reasons—rationals based on sound reason, logical thought, or even personal intuition—to make the right decision. Because I deserve it! is never one of them.