It has come to my attention recently that I know a few people who are sadly, very narrow minded, its hard for me to look at the world through their eyes and to be honest, I pity them because they seem to be missing out on so much. I personally would describe myself as broad minded, but I have found myself generalizing on occasion though I am quick to remind myself how I would feel if I were being judged in such manner? would EVERYONE agree with my choices? Most certainly not!
The difference between broad-minded and narrow-minded according to the dictionary online.
Narrow-minded people are not evil. They just have a limited sphere of thinking. While some of these people become narrow-minded after being exposed to harsh realities of life, others just lack education, varied experiences and most importantly – unconditional acceptance and love they deserve. Narrow-mindedness is not a permanent condition. You just need to do an honest self-analysis and start working on your thinking habits, one step at a time.
Here is the list of signs that may show you you’re a narrow minded person.
You tend to generalize everything:
Every human being has the tendency to generalize an opinion. For example, if a handful of people from Italy were unkind to you during your trip to the United States, you may or may not generalize that all Italians are rude, dangerous and obnoxious. A narrow-minded person almost certainly chooses to generalize in such cases. Some common examples are – Everyone in Pakistan is a terrorist, all gold medalist athletes used performance enhancing drugs, all political leaders are corrupt and all government officials take bribes.
Having pre-conceived notions about people, events and several other things without valid reasons is a common sign of narrow-mindedness. If you judge a person, movie, book, leader, officer or anyone else very quickly, it’s possible your mind has become habitual to ‘presume’ than to analyze and discover. A narrow-minded person tends to see a dozen things the same way he found the first one.
You do not discuss your core beliefs with everyone:
While some people just like to keep their core beliefs and ideas about life to themselves, there are many others, who keep them from friends, family members and relatives simply because they cannot stand contrary arguments. If you’ve never discussed such things with ‘anyone’ in your life, you’re probably rolling down a narrow lane in your mind, unwilling to ride on a wide highway with others.
You enjoy pin-pointing the shortcomings:
A large number of people enjoy pin-pointing wrongs in the society a lot more than they appreciate things that are just as they should be. Even if you consider the last 48 hours of your life, you can easily analyze if you’ve been mostly whining or feeling grateful. If you have been complaining about corruption, public callousness, poverty, crimes etc. 20 times a day, you’ve probably narrowed down your thinking to everything negative in this world. This is one of the easiest signs of narrow-mindedness that you can recognize.
You’re not open to new ideas:
A narrow-minded person may appear conservative, liberal, religious or spiritual on the surface. Deep down, however, such a person lives inside a closed shell, unwilling to expose himself to new opinions even if they’re based on facts and obvious realities. A religious person, for example, may just refuse to accept that his religion is not the ‘best religion’ in the world.
You contact your friends only when you’re sad:
If you’ve a tendency to contact your ‘close’ friends only when you’re depressed or frustrated, chances are you have been paying little or no attention to them. It is possible that you do not seek their company in happy-times. It is not wrong to reach out to people you think you love and trust when you’re physically, mentally or emotionally weak. However, it is certainly a sign of narrow-mindedness if you feel the need to call or meet friends only when you’re not happy.
You fail to interact well with someone after you discover a negative part of their personality:
It’s not easy to recognize this tendency, especially when you’re doing self-analysis. The best you can do is to recall some incidents when a friend acted stupid, selfish or childish. If the nature of relationship between the two of you changed after just one incident, chances are you focus more on the negative side of your friend’s personality.
You do not like anyone that disagrees with you:
If you like everyone to be in perfect agreement with everything you believe in, it is possible you haven’t rationally considered their life experiences. There are very few people in the world who are either 99% selfless or 99% selfish. If you find it hard to stand disagreements, whether at workplace, family life or in personal relationships, you’re almost certainly becoming narrow minded. It’s important that you learn to disagree happily.
You’re obsessed with righteousness:
Some people like to be right on all occasions. Even if they’re aware of their wrongdoings and blunders, they try to tuck it deep in their hearts and pretend being righteous in front of family members, friends and colleagues. If you cannot recall occasions when you apologized for something, laughed at your blunders with near and dear ones or openly accepted your mistakes, chances are you’ve spoiled your mind!