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DEALING WITH PEER PRESSURE

Jul 4, 2023

By

Emetulu Precious Ifeanyi

As humans, we want to be accepted and recognized especially by our friends and peers: that sense of belonging is just so tempting and as such we tend to compromise and do all it takes just so we fit in and be accepted by them. This could be dreadful if one is not sensitive enough to discern the good from the bad influence. So many lives and future have been jeopardized, endangered and

truncated because of this menace. However, it may be of great help when it pushes one to strive for something greater, excellent and not being complacent or remaining in one’s comfort zone.

What is peer pressure?

“PEER PRESSURE” According to Williams, toddlers are more likely to imitate the actions of a crowd than those performed by an individual. Some people use the term “peer pressure” to refer to the ways in which groups influence their members to do things they may not feel comfortable with. Peer pressure simply means the influence of your peers on you. This influence could be of positive or negative effect, but in most cases the

later prevails.

Join me as we explore some of the ways to deal with peer pressure.

Choose your circles wisely.

Surrounding yourself with the wrong persons, exert a strong influence on you. Choose positive friends who won’t pressure you to do things that you feel uncomfortable to do. A popular saying goes “show me your friends and I will tell you who you are.” you are seventy-five percent of the company you keep. Why endangering yourself by keeping those friends who cause you to doubt your

integrity and forces you to comprise your values and standards. I am not saying you shouldn’t relate to them, but they shouldn’t be your “friend.” Why moving with an alcoholic addict when you don’t want to be one? These are questions you need to ask yourself before keeping such friendship.

Believe in yourself

When you know who you are, it’s difficult for you to be deceived by vain words, vainglory, and lifestyle. You become sensitive enough to tell the wrong influence of the bad ones. Many youths are in mess today because they doubt themselves, and as such, anything goes in (like “make we just do am, since everyone is doing it”). I was once in this particular situation, where a lack of self-belief

wanted to pull me away from the right path. Believe you have all it takes to succeed, believe that you don’t need to follow the crowd to make it: you mustn’t blend, believe that you are different and unique and you don’t need to try so hard to fit in. the sooner you start being yourself the better, never be ashamed of who you are, rather seek to develop yourself. Never hurt your self-esteem.

Be contented with what you have

This statement has been criticized by so many persons, but either way, to some extent it holds. In a world, Nigeria to be specific where all we see on the internet and the media is money, money, money. Perhaps, one could be tempted to get money at all cost: by hook or by crook. And what we fail to realize is, how they

make their money. Instead, we mount unnecessary pressure on ourselves just to make money which could cost us our values. When you know what you want and love the things you have, the chances of being pressurized by your peers become slim. Never be in a hurry, don’t envy that friend, don’t admire that extravagant lifestyle, perhaps you are single and all your peers are flirting around don’t get deceived. Know your worth, and focus on you.

Burn the bridges

Disassociate yourself from peers or activities that mount pressure,l unnecessary pressure on you (bad energy); It could be peers, places, lifestyle and the likes of it. Avoid places and situations that make you uncomfortable.

Disconnect from them. Be assertive about this. Do it deliberately. The future or life you dream of having cannot be achieved if you keep the wrong connections. Burn those bridges and start constructing the right ones.

Talk to a mentor, guardian or trusted friend.

If you are struggling with peer pressure, talk to someone you trust. Your friends might have some advice on how they handled peer pressure that you could use. You can as well talk to your parents as they have your best interest at heart, be sincere with them and tell them about that issue that easily beset you. Also, talk to a mentor about it or someone you feel comfortable with to express yourself.

Conclusion

Within every man there is always an internal battle, everyone wants to gain approval from friends and family, but it’s quite okay if the reverse is the case: peer pressure will always mount up and it’s something beyond our control but we can control how we respond to them. You cannot be everyone at the same time. Be you. Stand tall on your values and standard never bend the knee to negative energy.

Ifeanyi is a Law student at Delta State University, Oleh Campus.

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