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Peer Pressure Reasons, Impacts, and Solutions

I am a self-love and true fulfillment enthusiast and want to make people aware of these ultimate necessities for a happy life.

What is peer pressure?

As per the dictionary, a peer is a person who is the same age or has the same social position or the same abilities as other people in a group. So it simply means our friend circle, colleagues, sometimes neighbors, or the community we see ourselves a part of. From the word peer comes the term peer pressure which means the obligations of conduct or habits that we impose on ourselves most often unwillingly just to please that community that means our peers. Teenagers usually fall prey to it, which initially to them is just following the trend but soon it becomes an obligation, meaning the end of the free will, so even unwillingly they go out of their way to conform to the ways of their friend circle or to compete with others. The collocation is used generally used in context with the teenagers but the adults also become a victim to this quite often.

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Why do people fall victim to peer pressure?

The biggest cause of it is a lack of self-worth, thus finding the sense of security and acceptance from the society or the community the person most often connects to. Under such tendency, the person starts to seek acceptance in terms of what types of clothes to wear, what accessories or luxury goods we are considered to have to what we eat or drink. They start allowing those other people to control all their choices. There is nothing bad in choosing the same path that everyone else. We can simply call it motivation. However, this motivation when clashes with your will, self-respect, your well-being, values, and financial status, then it becomes the pressure. If you are being easily manipulated and controlled by people, then no doubt you are under serious pressure and it is a problem worth addressing.

What are the impacts of peer pressure?

Peer pressure, the word itself has a negative connotation. Being prone to it means giving control of your life in other people’s hands. And that simply means suppressing your true self and letting other people decide what you choose to eat, drink, wear, have or do. This is no less than living someone else’s life. Mostly teenagers and even some adults under the pressure of their friends fall prey to bad eating habits, alcoholism, drug addiction and so on which adversely impact their health. Extravagance is another outcome of such imitating behavior. Just to impress their friends, and to stay in their good books people end up emptying their pockets or borrowing money for purchasing clothes and accessories unnecessarily while rejecting the things they already have just because their friends wouldn’t like that or so they think. In most cases, following such a trend, people end up attracting fake friends and relationships who are around only for their own advantage. Also, there are family disputes since the outer influences on the person sometimes do not resonate with the family’s values and beliefs.

Overall, it leads to a lack of self-worth with outside validation becoming of prime importance for the person, decision-making skill, imbalanced lifestyle or ill-health both physically and mentally, inharmonious family relations.

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How to overcome this pressure?

The very first need is the awareness that peer pressure is a problem and that the people you are doing all this for are temporary in your life but the impacts on your life are going to be permanent. In the end, you are responsible for your life or all the consequences that follow.

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Get over your fear of rejection or need for acceptance. Know that your true friends will accept you the way you are, if they don’t accept you they aren’t true friends let them go. Embodying your true self you will attract like-minded people and hence friends who better understand you.

Don’t seek validation or approval from your outer environment but cultivate your self-worth inside. Practice self-love and take pride in who you are. Follow your hobbies and passions. The person who loves and respects themselves standing in their own power and uniqueness is much more attractive than the one imitating and being part of the crowd. If you want to stay happy and confident in life learn to take control of your life in your own hands.

If the parents want their child to be free from peer pressure, they need to teach them about self-worth and self-acceptance, more by example than by instruction as children tend to follow what parents do than what they say. If you tell them right away to be the other way, it is not practical for them to do and will make them resistant to change. Therefore, be patient and understanding with them.

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All in all, staying true to oneself is the key to true satisfaction, happiness, and growth in life. Know that you are enough the way you are. Learn from others what needs to be learned but not at the cost of pushing yourself to the limits just to impress a couple of people who are not even liable for the consequences. Hence, youngsters and adults alike need to be aware of how to fight the temptation of coming under peer pressure or any such obligations.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2022 Jas Kailey

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