Accordingto an article written by ‘Reachout’blog, peer pressure is defined as the influence felt by an individualfrom another person or some people to take an action that they couldnot have considered in their conditions. It is not a peculiar feelingfor a person to desire to be part of a group or to develop a sense ofbelonging especially if the individual is not well acquainted or haslittle experience in comparison to those around him (Feller,2011).
Inmost cases, peer pressure is a product of avoiding loneliness orbeing left out in a trending activity. One tends to go with whatother do and think so that they can be included in the group. Thearticle further points out that a peer can be anybody within the sameage bracket, like friends, classmates or celebrities. As much as anindividual might try to live to the expectations of others, he shouldbe careful not to allow them to cloud personal goals. It furtherexpands on critical aspects of the impacts, the sources and what onecan do in cases of peer pressure.
How Affects Individuals
Reachoutasserts that social influence is not always a bad thing. In somecases, it can affect one positively and offer a challenge ormotivation to overcome tribulations and be the best. On the contrary,it can also be negative. It can make one to indulge in actions thatare not in line with their conscience. In the article, there areseveral areas in which social influence can impact on the life of aperson. These areas include fashion, consumption of drugs andalcohol, decision making, relationships, choosing friends and thecurricular performance.
WherePeers Pressure Comes From
Itexists in particular places like schools, workplace and in thebroader society in general. It affects all people regardless of theirage, race or the social, economic backgrounds. It can result fromseveral different directly, indirectly or at an individual level.
Directsources include cases where someone tells you what to do. When thishappens, the person being often influenced feels threatened, hurt orforced to do things they are not interested in doing. It is advisablethat they seek help from close friends, relatives, and teachers oreven counselors (Feller,2011).
Indirectsources are passive, and one may fail to realize when he is beingcarried away. For instance, a group of friends tends to have oneunique habit that they engage in together. But ones one of the teammembers is in a different group, he will not carry out the sameactivity. A good example is when one smokes only when he is in thecompany of given friends or he is likely to concentrate on studieswhen with other colleagues.
Itcan also be intrinsic. Sometimes feelings of being different fromothers may arise within an individual. Occasionally, this comes upwhen people have been cut from their social links like when theyrelocate to new cities, transferred to new schools or get a new job. The impact is that one is compelled to make new friends andsuccessfully fit into the new area. One might opt even without beingpersuaded by anyone to do things so as to evade the feeling of beingout of place. The internal sense of uncertainty is the mother of peerpressure.
Asan individual, one is entrusted with a natural right of makingdecisions. One should be accountable and take responsibility of hisdeeds and thoughts. Similarly, as a person, you ought to be a valuedentity and accommodate individual groups. It is not easy to resistthe influences within the society completely, but they are manageable(Feller, 2011).
First,one has to value mutual interests. When one hangs around individualswith shared habits and behaviors, it may assist him to avoidcircumstances where he is forced or threatened to do what he is notinterested. What one needs to remember is that when he is seen in thecompany of the “cool guys” is not fun especially if he is notcomfortable with the activities of the group.
Assertivenessis essential in this field. Though many lack the strength to say noto some things, sticking to what you believe in is the best feeling.Try to explain to others in a calm way why you are against something.This trait does not only earn respect but also cultivates a sense ofconfidence.
Anotherstrategy is refraining from judging others. Judging the choices madeby others is unethical. Since respect is two way, when we respectothers choices, they respect ours too. Naturally, we do not have toagree with the decisions made by others. However, it is ethical tofocus on the different reasons that make us unhappy with their movesto avoid judging them.
Lastly,the article encourages people to take action and oppose negativeinfluence. It makes one comfortable and restores sanity in the entiregroup.
Feller,R.M. (2011). EverythingYou Need to Know about .The Rosen Publishing Group.