--Original published at Garrettscollegeblog
Dealing with peer pressure seems difficult in every situation. The idea of fitting in takes precedence in so many people’s mind they sometimes ignore their existing morals. My hardest times dealing with peer pressure came in high school, college, and the athletics I partake in. I never found a concrete way to handle peer pressure as the peers around me differ in every situation. This blog with dive into different sources that think they have figured out the best ways to handle peer pressure from the perspectives of high school students, college students, and athletes.
Mazzittiandsullivan.com posted an article that pinpoints specific tactics to dealing with peer pressure in college. Of the four suggestions provided, the one that seemed the most prolific to me was seek healthy relationships. It mentions the idea of surrounding yourself with a group that engages in positive activities. Dealing with peer pressure is almost unavoidable so this approach attempts to put a student in a situation that when peer pressure does arise, it is for positive things. Obviously this approach is easier said than done, but college does promote a fresh start for many incoming students that do not know anyone and are searching for friends.
High school differs from college a little as avoiding things proves a little harder. Students spend around eight hours per day in school where word spreads so fast about what other students did that made them “cool.” That remains the talk of the school for days or even weeks at a time. Accreditedschoolsonline.org offers many solutions but the best comes about in one they call “get out of the situation.” When a group of people is planning to do immoral or even life threatening things, leave. When in the presence of a group it becomes easier to conform; so the longer the student remains with the group, the harder it will become to say no and conforming feels so much easier.
Athletes experience a lot of peer pressure that if one partakes in it. The obvious situations like engaging in drugs and alcohol, which can result in things like loss of scholarship or getting kicked off of the team, really stick out in this scenario. Even small events like succumbing to peer pressure to go out and stay out late the night before a game act as poor decisions for an athlete and positiveperformancetraining.com provides steps to deal with this peer pressure. The most influential step states that the athlete should ask himself or herself before doing the act, “will this help me and will I look back and think this was a good idea.” When asking this the athlete can decide way before a group or peers become involved to say no and avoid the situation as a whole. Similar to the high school example above, this tip can alleviate the stress to conform when in front of groups because the question can allow the person to leave prior to group intervention in the peer pressure.
The ideas above will differ in effectiveness from person to person as many people adapt to groups in different ways. Some experience social interference where a group hinders the person and makes conformity easier. For some, however, groups aid the person and make the situation easier to navigate; that is called social facilitation.