Peer pressure is where someone encourages and persuades someone else to do an activity, which can mean both negative and positive.
Tip – It’s ok to say no!
Positive peer pressure can be when people are influenced to join a sport, or another type of club. This can lead to having a healthier lifestyle, meeting new people and overall enjoying yourself.
Negative peer pressure is the opposite where people are influenced to over-identify with sport or another activity which leads to disengagement as people are putting the activity above the person.
Tip – You don’t always have to follow the crowd.
Peer Pressure and Addiction
When it comes to addiction, peer pressure comes under the negative side of peer pressure where children and young people usually do things that they usually wouldn’t do just to fit in. This could be getting in trouble at school or experimenting with drugs and alcohol.
Taking part in these sorts of activities can lead to addiction and a lifestyle that is unhealthy. Risk taking gets to a point where it is dangerous and people can start to get in trouble with the police.
Tip – Find friends that have the same values as you.
What are the causes, effects or solutions of peer pressure?
Causes – Weak personality, fear of rejection, social acceptance, avoidance of bullying, religion, cultural values, personal confusion, mental health struggles etc.
Effects – Changes in performance in school, attitude, visual experience, bullying, violence etc.
Solutions – Schools address the topic, parents build self-esteem in children, increase tolerance in society, change our value systems, adults observe children’s behaviour for changes etc.
Tip – Look for positive role models.
How can peer pressure affect your wellbeing?
Peer pressure can affect someone’s mental health in many ways. These include, decrease in self-confidence and questioning who you are, embarrassed and self-conscious about themselves, feelings of guilt and distance from friends and family and may develop depression or anxiety.
Overall, peer pressure can come in different ways from different people. Parents, teachers, friends can peer pressure and it can be both in a positive and negative way. Negative peer pressure can be where people take part in something they don’t want to do, to fit in and try to become popular. Whereas positive peer pressure is more for yourself rather than for other people.