Based upon the title you would think this post is about getting credit for a credit card, a mortgage or otherwise. What I am talking about is getting credit for something that one should do anyway. In other words, why do people expect to get “credit” for things they should just automatically do.
What set me off on this rant is that one of the things I hate about teaching is the grading. I don’t know any teacher that really likes grading because there is practically always grade grubbing, particularly at the end of the semester, when you have students who haven’t done the work come to you and ask you for extra credit so they can pass or expect that they should do better on an assignment when it was just average.
One incident, in particular, comes to mind in the past week. I had a student who handed in their assignment and they did ok on it. It wasn’t that good and you could tell they put a half-hearted attempt into it. When they got their grade back (I gave them a C) the student came back to me and asked what I did wrong. And I said did you look at my comments? The student said “no” but they were surprised because they never got below a B. The student went on to say that they did all the requirements and handed it in on time so what gives? The implication was that because they followed the directions and did what they were SUPPOSED to do then they deserved a better grade.
This kind of mentality drives me nuts. The idea that because you attempt something or you hand it in that you deserve “credit” for it. In terms of finance, it is the equivalent, at least in my mind, of paying your bills on time. Because I did something that I should do and because I am responsible I deserve “credit” for paying my bills.
My answer to that mentality: WHOOOPITY DOOO????
Congratulations you met your responsibilities. You did what you were supposed to do. In my mind, you don’t get special credit or even credit/recognition for doing the basics paying your bills, turning in assignments on time, taking care of your kids, etc. Recognition should only come for those things that are extraordinary, you win an award, etc.
I guess you could say that it is a similar mentality for those that get a “participation” trophy. Frankly, I think giving every student/person a trophy for participating is a problem that needs to be addressed more in our society. You shouldn’t get recognition for what you are supposed to do. You get special awards for going above and beyond.
Maybe I am just a bit old school on this front. I don’t deserve credit for paying my bills, mortgage, saving for retirement. That is what you are supposed to do.
So let’s stop giving people “credit” for things they are supposed to do. It is called being a responsible adult and it is really nothing special. Those that are special and should be applauded are those that overcome great odds, do great works, sacrifice their time, money, and effort. Those are the people who deserve the credit, not living up to your basic responsibilities.