"The Power of Naive Optimism and Effective Dispute Resolution in Nigeria"

Feranmi Olaseinde

Feranmi Olaseinde

Sep 10, 20233 min read


"The Power of Naive Optimism and Effective Dispute Resolution in Nigeria"


In Nigeria, the two most popular methods of dispute resolution are litigation and arbitration. However, there has been a growing interest in mediation as an alternative approach. At the same time, the concept of naive optimism has been explored in various contexts, highlighting its potential to positively impact one's life. In this article, we will delve into the significance of both naive optimism and effective dispute resolution in Nigeria, drawing connections between these seemingly unrelated concepts.

Naive Optimism and Dispute Resolution:

Naive optimism, characterized by the unwavering belief in favorable outcomes, can play a crucial role in dispute resolution. When facing a challenging situation, such as a legal dispute, adopting a positive stance can provide the motivation needed to overcome obstacles. Naive optimism allows individuals to focus on the goal at hand, rather than getting discouraged by potential setbacks. It is particularly useful when embarking on significant projects, such as starting a business or writing a novel. By disregarding the potential hurdles, individuals are more likely to take risks, step out of their comfort zones, and build confidence in themselves.

Children as Naive Optimists:

Children often exhibit a natural inclination towards naive optimism. Their lack of self-consciousness and fear of failure allows them to approach new experiences with enthusiasm and an eagerness to learn. They overestimate their abilities, which enables them to acquire new skills quickly. This childlike mindset of embracing the unknown without dwelling on the likelihood of failure can be beneficial for adults as well. By adopting a naive optimistic attitude, individuals can make better decisions for their future selves, free from the constraints of self-doubt and overthinking.

Developing a Naive Optimistic Mindset:

For individuals who tend to be chronic overthinkers, embracing naive optimism may require conscious effort. However, by faking it until they make it, individuals can gradually internalize this mindset. Starting with small tasks and setting optimistic expectations, such as completing a to-do list or having a successful meeting, can lay the foundation for a more optimistic outlook. Over time, these thought patterns can permeate other aspects of life, leading to a more positive and proactive approach.

The Connection to Effective Dispute Resolution:

The connection between naive optimism and effective dispute resolution may not be immediately apparent, but they share a common thread. Both require individuals to focus on the desired outcome rather than fixating on the potential obstacles. In the context of dispute resolution, naive optimism can facilitate a more constructive and collaborative approach. By maintaining an optimistic outlook, parties involved in a dispute can foster an environment conducive to mediation, where they can work together to find mutually beneficial solutions.

Actionable Advice:

  • 1. Embrace Naive Optimism: Start cultivating a naive optimistic mindset by consciously adopting a positive perspective in various aspects of your life. Take small steps and gradually incorporate this mindset in more significant endeavors.
  • 2. Consider Mediation: When faced with a dispute, explore the option of mediation as an alternative to litigation or arbitration. Mediation allows for a more collaborative approach, fostering a win-win outcome, and potentially preserving relationships.
  • 3. Focus on the End Goal: Whether in dispute resolution or personal challenges, shift your focus from potential obstacles to the desired outcome. Maintain an optimistic outlook, as it can help you overcome setbacks and push you closer to success.


Naive optimism and effective dispute resolution may seem unrelated, but they share common principles. By adopting a positive perspective and focusing on the desired outcome, individuals can overcome obstacles and achieve favorable results. Whether it's in personal endeavors or resolving disputes, the power of naive optimism should not be underestimated. Embrace a childlike mindset, practice optimism, and watch how it positively impacts your life and interactions with others.


  1. "An interview with Udo Udoma & Belo-Osagie discussing dispute resolution in Nigeria", https://www.lexology.com/library/detail.aspx?g=f9291434-d911-4a20-815b-9e6b880d64df (Glasp)
  2. "(9) Naive Optimism Will Change Your Life - YouTube", https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=os11zKOi8XQ (Glasp)

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