The naive’s guide to happiness (How to be naive and happy)

Dec 14, 2007 by


What is naive ? The dictionary WordWeb mentioned that as

“marked by or showing unaffected simplicity and lack of guile or worldly experience

The Oxford mentioned it even in a different way:

“(disapproving) lacking experience of life, knowledge or good judgement and willing to believe that people always tell you the truth

It sounds so bad, isn’t it? But what if we can learn something from a naive person?

In this article, I’d like to bring you a naive profile, and it’s from the “Enchanted” movie, it’s really fun watching the movie. It has quite a simple plot, but I had a good time watching it and laughed a lot.

I’m sure that all of us will laugh or at least smile while watching the movie, and one of the answers must be because of that naive princess. Couldn’t blame her, as it’s her first trip to real world from the fairytale land. She came in this world without knowing nothing of this world, what she has ever known is the fairy land, happiness land, where everything will end up with happily ever after.

Naive doesn’t know the word “naive”. Me too, I know the word “naive” when a friend commented on me when I tried to influence her to join me doing network marketing business, she is using the word “naive” to show that I’m so mmm… naive, inexperienced, believe that everyone is telling the truth, believe that everything is so simple and easy to do.

This is also the reason I put the “naive” as part of the sub-title in my blog. It’s a limitation and it’s important to change and to know how I can turn this naive-ness of mine, this limitation into an advantage.

Taking the positive side, let’s see what we can learn from this naive princess from the “Enchanted” movie…

1. You won’t know unless you try

It’s so funny to see, how stupid our naive princess trying whatever she knows that works in her fairy land, seeking some direction from a beggar, knocking the castle signboard to find some helps, and the last is calling out for help to clean her house by shouting a “la-la-la” song.

The lesson: What are your dreams and what are the ways you know now? I’m not perfect, and so is everyone, we may not always know the best way to make it happens, even when we know we may have a hard time to apply and do it. But it’s important to take a first step, even if at the end it’s a mistake, we will not know that it works or it won’t work until at least we try.

2. Learn to use your “cockroaches”

It’s interesting to see how the naive princess call out some helps to clean the house, and at the end those came out are all that we thought of as dirty creatures, the pigeons, rats and cockroaches. And what tickles me is the first comment she said, “Wow, it’s good to know new friends!”. And even more, that she actually clean the house with dirty creatures.

The lesson: So now you have tried, you’ve been there, done that, and see some of what you’ve got, failures, mistakes, and disappointment. Things doesn’t turn out to be as what we expected. That’s what I called as your “cockroaches”. When we are inexperienced, it’s just normal that we get mistakes and failures, unexpected results, but can we make that as your “new friend“?

When I say that your failure is your friend means that you’re OK with that, you’re not resenting their existence, but the point is… make use of your “cockroaches”!, don’t look back or regretting of what we should have done and could have done, but look forward, see what can you do now to fix the situation, make use of your failure to learn to make a better step in the future.

3. Have a positive outlook of life

Our naive princess is so generous, she’s giving like she has plenty even though that’s the only money she has, she’s praising whoever she meet, trusting anyone, and she likes singing, singing whenever she wants to. And you know what? it’s fun to see that happiness is contagious, how she sings and brings the whole park to sing along, together with her. She does believe in everything turns out to be good, she believes that all will ends with happily ever after.

The lesson: we can have the similar outlook to in life, John C. Maxwell has ever said on generosity:

Sometimes we hold on to our possesions because we fear we might run out – life seems scarce. But when we believe that giving is the way to live, we will produce more in the future – life seems abundant.

John C. Maxwell


When we have a positive outlook, we too can have the same belief that we will produce more in the future, or in another words, that life will ends with happily ever after. This will make us much more generous, we will praise others more, we are not afraid to encourage others, or to teach others our knowledge, etc. Life seems abundant that we become so generous. We too can believe that we will have a happy ending, live happily ever after.

4. Have an open mind and always learn

Her journey in the real world is not useless, she learned a lot about real world, she even learned of how to be angry, she learned a lot about relationship and dating (“oooh… NOO!”), means that now she is much more demanding for being in a relationship.

The lesson: What Oxford said is right, naive people trust people too easily but that also the one that can makes them a FAST learner if the people they trust is the right person, that really concern about her goodness.

Harv Eker in his book, Secrets of the Millionaire Mind: Mastering the Inner Game of Wealth, also mentioned…

You can be right or you can be rich, but you can’t be both

T. Harv Eker

What he is trying to say here is that to be a rich person, successful person, or a happy person, you need to constantly learn, we need to change from our old way of habit and thinking, we need to grow. This is what Eric Hoffer is saying…

The learners shall inherit the earth while the learned will be beautifully equipped to live in a world that no longer exists.

Eric Hoffer

5. Change and willing to fight for your dream

And wonderfully she changed, and at the end she’s willing to fight for her cause, especially when her prince is captured by the witch, instead of holding on to the belief that prince should save the princess, she’s now willing to change and fight for her cause, to save her prince.

The lesson: After learning and having a changed mindset, start doing, getting into the corridor. One more thing to remember is in letting go our old belief, that everything has to work as the way we know before. The world is changing, and we need to grow. We need to take steps to become a better person, believe in your dream and fight for your dream.

In conclusion

You might be naive now, in a way inexperienced and has many limitations. but again I’d like to say that your limitation is not always limitation, as I have mentioned before, introvert can be your advantage, and now naive-ness can be your advantage. Learn to use it not in becoming your weakness, but becoming your strength.

Few things that naive people need to learn:

  1. Be more sensitive, observing people to know who are the people to trust
  2. More sensitive on other people’s feeling and desire, not all along being selfish and doing everything in our own way.
  3. Learn to say no, as you’re growing, more and more people will ask your help, and you need to learn to say no.
  4. Some naive people can hold fast to his/her old way of thinking that this world is perfect, and he/she need to change that it’s not true, and therefore, you need to be careful and smart enough to live in this world.

That’s for now, I’ll discuss more about the skills we need to have in the future, so please subscribe to my RSS feeds to keep updated.

All the best,

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  1. Great article! I really enjoyed the movie, and I’m glad you pointed this out. I had picked up on a lot of this while watching it, but hadn’t actually gone out and put it into a concrete form.

  2. Robert A.

    Hi Blaine, appreciate your comment, glad to know that you also enjoy the movie, it’s another interesting movie from a very creative Walt Disney.


  3. Thanks for the article! I’ll have to see the movie now so I get all the references, but you paint a pretty good picture even for those that haven’t seen the movie.

  4. Robert A.

    Hi John, glad that you like the article, that is really a good movie, enjoy the movie!
    Hope my article doesn’t spoil your enjoyment! =)

  5. I like this. I am going home with more hope than ever.

  6. Erika M. Barbado

    Hello Robert! I really like this article. I used to be so naive. I never watched the movie but i will look for it.

  7. Sindy

    I am glad I found this article. Very inspirational. Thanks a lot!!!


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