Positive and Negative Peer Pressure

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Peer pressure is something that you have experienced already and WILL experience in high school and for the rest of your life. Most of what you know about peer pressure is in regard to negative peer pressure. What you may not know is that peer pressure can also be a good thing. In contrast to negative peer pressure, there is also positive peer pressure. Let's take a deeper look at peer pressure. 

Oxford's American Dictionary defines peer pressure as, "influence from members of ones peer group."

Now in layman's terms... Peer pressure is when your friends push you into doing something. 

Notice that neither of those definitions say anything regarding good or bad. While your friends can push or pressure you into doing something you shouldn't do. They can also push or pressure you into doing something that you should do.

What type of pressure comes from your friends???

  • Your friends don't try to get you to party with with them the night before a big test.
  • Your friends encourage you to try out for a team or join a club.
  • Your friends don't bully, pick on, or harass others.

  • Your friends regularly get in trouble with teachers and/or other authority figures.
  • Your friends try to get you to drink alcohol or smoke or have sex.
  • Your friends don't care about anything.

So take time to reflect on what type of influence your friends have on you. If the outcomes of your experiences with your friends is mostly negative or end up with you getting in trouble, they are negative influences. If the outcomes with your friends is mostly positive and make you feel proud, they are positive influences.

Your life is defined by the choices and decisions that you make!

We all make choices on a daily basis. Some decisions are of small importance and some can be life changing. What does this have to do with Peer Pressure? By being a positive influence (inflicting positive peer pressure) on your friends, you are helping them make better decisions, which will lead to a better life. 

*****Note: There is only so much you can do to positively influence your friends. There comes a point where you stop being a positive influence and your friends start being a negative influence on you. Do not surround yourself with negative influences! Choose your friends wisely! ******

There is an old saying that goes "Show me your friends and I will tell you who you are." While you are your own person, it is easier to go with the flow of the people around you. If those people have goals and are positive, you most likely will follow that example. If those people are self destructive, it won't be long before you do the same.

"You are only as good as the company you keep!!!"

Check out these websites for more information on peer pressure.