Walking Away From Peer Pressure
It is tough to be the only one who says "no" to peer pressure, but you can do it. Paying attention to your own feelings and beliefs about what is right and wrong can help you know the right thing to do. Inner strength and self-confidence can help you stand firm, walk away, and resist doing something when you know better. It can really help to have at least one other peer, or friend, who is willing to say "no," too. This takes a lot of the power out of peer pressure and makes it much easier to resist. It's great to have friends with values similar to yours who will back you up when you don't want to do something. You've probably had a parent or teacher advise you to "choose your friends wisely." Peer pressure is a big reason why they say this. If you choose friends who don't use drugs, cut class, smoke cigarettes, or lie to their parents, then you probably won't do these things either, even if other kids do. Try to help a friend who's having trouble resisting peer pressure. It can be powerful for one kid to join another by simply saying, "I'm with you — let's go." Even if you're faced with peer pressure while you're alone, there are still things you can do. You can simply stay away from peers who pressure you to do stuff you know is wrong. You can tell them "no" and walk away. Better yet, find other friends and classmates to pal around with. If you continue to face peer pressure and you're finding it difficult to handle, talk to someone you trust. Don't feel guilty if you've made a mistake or two. Talking to a parent, teacher, or school counselor can help you feel much better and prepare you for the next time you face peer pressure.
Powerful, Positive Peer Pressure
Peer pressure is not always a bad thing. For example, positive peer pressure can be used to pressure bullies into acting better toward other kids. If enough kids get together, peers can pressure each other into doing what's right
Peer pressure isn’t all bad. You and your friends can pressure each other into some things that will improve your health and social life and make you feel good about your decisions. Think of a time when a friend pushed you to do something good for yourself or to avoid something that would’ve been bad. Here are some good things friends can pressure each other to do: * Be honest
* Avoid Alcohol
* Avoid drugs
* Not smoke
* Be nice
* Respect others
* Work hard
* Exercise (together!)
You and your friends can also use good peer pressure to help each other resist bad peer pressure. If you see a friend taking some heat, try some of these lines … * We don’t want to drink.
* We don’t need to drink to have fun.
* Let’s go and do something else.
* Leave her alone. She said she didn’t want any
* They seldom think of the many "good" things that peer pressure could bring about in people - and neither do most parents of teenagers. * Most people think of peer pressure as influence to do negative things like smoking, taking illicit drugs, drinking alcohol, having promiscuous sex, engaging in criminal behaviour, involvement in violence, joining gangs, and so on. * According to experts, peer pressure is not all bad. They argue that the right group of friends can encourage a person to do positive things. * Psychology lecturer at the Instititute of Health Sciences (IHS) Anita Lebengo says although peer pressure has always been associated with "bad" things, there are some good traits or behaviours emitted by peer pressure. "Peer pressure provides individuals with a yard stick for self evaluation, leading individuals to being competent and social beings and personal identification or introspection," she says, adding that the identification provides a sense of belonging and direction on various activities carried out in peer groups. Citing an example, Lebengo says one can choose between being part of an empowering group or a rebellious group. She further explains...
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