Been naive is not always a bad thing and once or more in one’s life thing, we must have been naive to a situation. Experience is key. Making mistakes should make one a better person, however, prevention they say is better than cure. Many at times, being naive has gotten people duped, raped, and rejected. So also it has given way to knowledge and experience only if the naive do not shy away. I am no family nor nurture expert but sometime it is said that overprotective parents do more bad than good to the child’s social exposure.

When I was in junior school, I used to judge females that are open to the male sex as bad and wayward. Most of us at the time was naive but we all had our levels to it. There was this particular new girl that was too free with boys and I termed her that way. I couldn’t get why a lady would be that free because I thought girls are meant to be shy
and uninterested with boy talks. The moment I got close to her, my orientation changed. She was so down to earth and a very nice person with a heart of gold. I found out later that people have their different personalities and background. You cannot judge a book by its cover. Today, I find it so hard to judge because I have seen so many things that do not correlate the general assumptions. Below are some of the ways I helped myself to be more sophisticated.

BE MORE ATTENTIVE: It is a crazy world outside your home and a lot of people are after their gain than your good. Many naive people are careless and trusting of anyone without observing for signs. Obviously, there are good liars that you cannot help but believe. Just like a friend of mine that told me about a neighbor of hers she thought for a long time was a very good person but turned out to be a terrible person. Being observant with your surroundings and people around you is very important. Do not always think everyone can be like you or cannot do bad, I learnt the hard way. There are signs in your relationship with other people to predict their personalities. Trust is very sacred; it should take enough findings and observation to trust a person.

BE OPEN-MINDED: Being open minded is your willingness to consider new ideas. We are in a changing world with a lot of social change and technological advancement. A businessman who wants to grow has to move with the changing world to compete well with his pairs. So also, you cannot always think you are always right in an argument or conversation without hearing what the other has to say.

LISTEN MORE THAN YOU TALK: A close family member to me loves control and in every conversation and arguments, she loves to take control of it all. At some point, I noticed she deteriorated from being very knowledgeable to very naive. I understand sometimes some people have unintelligent things to say but giving your mind a moment to listen to what the other has to say will do a lot to add to your previous knowledge, change your mindset or help to give you further research on the situation. When you talk less, it also helps you to prevent spillage of secrets you didn’t intend to spill and also retrains you from talking impulsively.

SOCIALIZE MORE: You do not have to be an extrovert to be more experienced in this context. This would involve meeting people from different background and engaging with them. That way you get to be exposed to other things of your limited experience. Someone who is of the urban heritage could be naive to the rural setting and vice-versa
if not exposed. I love to know and experience new things and people. Having friends from a different background has exposed me to an open world of things and has helped improve my judgment. Socializing more would include you engaging with people from different background. This includes people of your different class, status, belief, age, group, culture, mindset, and race.

BREAK OUT OF THE BOX: Some of us are blinded by the sentiment that even when we socialize or listen, our sentiment blocks us from opening our mind. I was doing a field work some time on inter-ethnic matters and a respondent when asked if she had any problem tolerating any ethnic group, she mentioned two. Funny enough she had more relationship with people of one of the ethnic groups she mentioned and had a best friend from that same ethnic group. From further questions, I found out there was no tangible reason to why. She gave reasons based on what she was taught to believe.
First, she gave chance to socialization but did not to open-mindedness and so has resulted in clouding her judgment and reasoning.
Breaking out of the box can also mean leaving your comfort zone. Many people are naive because of their rigid personality. They do not want to break off from the norm of their teaching. In some African society, for example, a lot of women are naive because they are taught to be less innovative so many would rather not try to be anything other
than a wife and mother.
In some families I have observed, there is this culture of ‘who has done it before among us’. It is one phrase that has hindered a lot from moving because of the fear that none of their relatives have done it before. Forgetting that someone has to do it, someone has to start it. WHY CAN’T IT BE YOU!

Above all be confident in yourself and open to new things. People that change the world are those that go for it.

-ugoMark for socialwe


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