I Need Food and I Deserve a Raise: People Feel More Entitled When Hungry


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Entitlement, or the feeling that one is more deserving of positive outcomes than other people are, has negative consequences in the workplace and in interpersonal relationships. It is therefore important to understand the sources of entitlement. We test the hypothesis that hunger, a self-focused state, leads people to feel more entitled. In Study 1, participants who had not yet eaten lunch reported greater entitlement and were more likely to refuse to help the researcher than participants who had eaten lunch. In Study 2, participants who were made to feel hungry by smelling a desirable food reported greater entitlement than did participants who did not smell the desirable food. Implications of these results are discussed.

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