Friends or peers have an influence on most teenagers, and sometimes this influence leads to pressure. Teenagers usually feel obligated to give in to whatever their peers tell them to do, and this is because they want to be liked and accepted by other people, according to kidshealth.org. Peer pressure is something many teenagers struggle with to this day, feeling overwhelmed and stressed by the thoughts of not being liked by others, especially their friends. However, peer pressure can be for any age. Adults even face peer pressure from their work and their colleagues.
I was also in situations like these when I was younger. When I was in middle school, we had a physics quiz, and I remember the person sitting next to me kept nudging me to tell her the answer to each question. I didn't want to do that because it was cheating, and I didn't want to get into trouble. However, my classmate kept nagging me and pressuring me to tell them the answer, but I didn't want to because, as I said earlier, I didn't want to be in trouble. I eventually got upset, and I told the teacher, and my classmate failed the quiz because she was trying to cheat. After class, everyone was gossiping about me and calling me a "tattle-tale." I remember being so upset that I went into a bathroom stall and cried all lunch because nobody would have been talking about me behind my back if I had given in to the pressure she was causing. This is what peer pressure essentially is.
So, how do we stop peer pressure? Well, I hate to say this, but you can't. You can't control what people do or what they say. Nobody can change anyone except themselves. So then, what do we do? We can learn how to deal with the pressure! To dodge peer pressure, you need to have a powerful mind, and you need to tell yourself some particular things to make sure that the pressure doesn't get to you.
Firstly, you need to know that it's not your fault. Usually, people blame themselves for someone else putting pressure on them, which is entirely wrong. Don't beat yourself up for something that someone else did. Know that it's not your fault, and you did the right thing for not giving in.
Second, you need to use logic instead of emotion. If you let all the dirty looks and back-talking get to you as I did, it'll eat you alive. What I mean is that you will not stop thinking about it as it will become a distraction. Make sure to think through what happened. Think with your mind, not your heart.
Next, learn to say no. This is something very hard for a lot of people that I know, myself included. Normally, we don't say no because we don't want to hurt another person's feelings. However, sometimes it's okay to say no. People can't always get what they want, and if you don't want to do something, say no. It's okay to say no.
Lastly, remember this: just because everyone else is doing it doesn't mean what they are doing is right, according to yourlifecounts.org. Make sure you know the difference between right and wrong. You know better. Trust your gut, and don't make the wrong decision; you'll regret it.
Know that it's not your fault: tell yourself that you did the right thing for not giving in.
Think logically: think with your mind, don't think emotionally.
Learn to say "no": saying no is okay. If you don't want to do something, don't do it.
If everyone does it, it doesn't mean it's right: ask yourself if it's right or wrong, trust your gut.
Let me know how these tips work for you in the comments below!