Peer Pressure Essay for Students and Children
500+ Words Essay on Peer Pressure
Peer pressure can be both negative and positive. Because if a person is a peer pressuring you for a good cause then it is motivation. Motivation is essential for the growth of a person. While peer pressure for a bad cause will always lead you to a disastrous situation.
Therefore it necessary for a person to not get influenced by the people around them. They should analyze the outcome of the deed in a strict manner. So that they no may commit anything harmful for themselves. As this world is full of bad people, so you need to be careful before trusting anybody.
Advantages of Peer Pressure
Peer pressure is advantageous in many ways. Most importantly it creates a sense of motivation in the person. Which further forces the person to cross the barrier and achieve something great. Furthermore, it boosts the confidence of a person. Because our brain considers people’s opinions and makes them a priority.
Many salesmen and Entrepreneurs use this technique to influence people to buy their products. Whenever we are in a social meet we always get various recommendations. Therefore when a person gets these recommendations the brain already starts liking it. Or it creates a better image of that thing. This forces the person to buy the product or at least consider it.
This peer pressure technique also works in creating a better character of a person. For instance, when we recommend someone for a particular job, the interviewer already gets a better image of that person. Because he is recommended by a person the interviewer trusts. Therefore there is a great chance of that person to get hired.
Above all the main advantage of peer pressure can be in youth. If a young person gets influenced by an individual or a group of people. He can achieve greater heights in his career.
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Disadvantages of Peer Pressure
There are various disadvantages of peer pressure which can harm a person in many ways. If any person is not willing to perform a task then the peer pressure can be frustrating to him.
Furthermore, peer pressure should not be in an excessive manner. Because it lands a negative impact on the person. A person should be of the mindset of listening to himself first. While considering opinions in favor of him.
Peer pressure in youth from a bad company can lead a person to a nasty situation. Furthermore, it can also hamper a student’s career and studies if not averted. Youth these days are much influenced by the glamorous life of celebrities.
And since they follow them so much, these people become their peers. Thus they do such things that they should not. Drugs and smoking are major examples of this. Moreover most shocking is that the minors are even doing these things. This can have adverse effects on their growth and career.
It is necessary to judge the outcome of a deed before getting influenced by peers. Furthermore, peer pressure should always be secondary. Your own thoughts and wants should always have the first priority.
Q1. What is peer pressure?
A1 . Peer pressure is the influence on people by their peers. As a result, people start following their opinions and lifestyle. Furthermore, it is considering a person or his opinion above all and giving him the priority.
Q2. Which sector of the society is the peer pressure adversely affecting?
A2 . Peer pressure has adverse effects on the youth of society. Some false influencers are playing with the minds of the youngsters. As a result, the youth is going in the wrong direction and ruining their career opportunities.
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The Effects of Peer Pressure on Students, Essay Example
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There are no simple answers to the effects of peer pressure on students. It would be unfair to say that most peer pressure results in unwise decisions, as it is often generalized within current culture. Peer pressure transforms a student in a unique manner. The current analysis will examine the most dangerous effects of peer pressure on students, as well as the general negative and positive effects.
Dangerous Effects of Peer Pressure
There are a number of dangerous effects that peer pressure can have on students. These effects are often felt within media and schools, which is where the perceived dangers of peer pressures lie, according to most. However, they certainly cannot be disregarded due to the truth of these concerns.
Alcohol is felt within the consequences of peer pressure in students. With regards to underage drinking, this is a significant problem within students, especially in high school and college. The habits and commonplace of underage drinking is established in high school, which is then perpetuated to one’s college years.
Partying in general is another example of the more dangerous effects of peer pressure. Younger students at parties are around others who are unsupervised, which makes them more susceptible to peer pressure. Thus, items like drinking and other inappropriate behavior are accepted in one’s social circle. Peer pressure is commonly seen at parties, which is where a number of dangerous activities occur.
Sex is also another example of the negative effects of peer pressure. Students are having sex at a younger age, resulting in items like teenage pregnancies. As underage and unprotected sex becomes accepted in social circles, peer pressure often has an effect on students in this way as well.
General Negative Effects
There are a number of generally negative effects that peer pressure can have on a student’s development. Beyond the more dangerous effects, at least in regards to the more clearly defined negative effects, a number of underlying effects of peer pressure can be seen with students. The dynamics that are presented in peer pressure in students can unfortunately be quite negative.
Peer pressure can often drown out the opinion of one. When students are engaged in certain social circles, it is not uncommon to see the unfair treatment of individuals. Certain individuals, whether they are not liked, ignored, or just not seen, are often unable to relate to others.
Peer pressure also removes the choices that one should be able to make. A number of events and activities that students are involved in are done on a social level. Such activities remove the healthy choices that enable students to seek adventure and healthy activities, instead of what is expected or on schedule.
The underlying negative dynamic of peer pressure is the ultimate undermining of individuality. Peer pressure has the unfortunate effect of removing one’s own will and desires, in order to become accepted or liked within a social circle. As seen in these negative examples and in the more dangerous illustrations, the individual is often casted our in peer pressure. As a result, one is left to follow others in that of peer pressure.
General Positive Effects
Peer pressure can of course have positive effects on students. While this is often not portrayed, it rings true for many students. It can often push and help one to realize or perform something, to help someone thrive with the help of others.
Peer pressure can help individuals in more difficult periods. Friends are there to help someone in tough times, and peer pressure can help someone who needs wise council. Many students, who are involved with the right people, are able to enjoy the positive relationships when they need them the most.
Some activities driven by peer pressure can help students get involved. Activities and functions can be great for the social development of a student. Peer pressure, even when applied outside of one’s comfort zone, can ultimately be beneficial.
Peer pressure can also help individuals make the right choices. When students face difficult choices in their life, they often rely on their friends. In this manner peer pressure can help persuade one to the right decision, allowing their friend to see the positive way to react to an important choice.
It is unfortunate that peer pressure is often regarded in one dimension. While there are certainly negative effects of peer pressure, such as those that undermine one’s individuality and encourage dangerous practices, peer pressure can help an individual develop through the difficult times as a student and a person. Centered on surrounding oneself with positive influences, peer pressure can rise above the negative effects to institute healthy social and personal steps of one’s development.
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Essay on Peer Pressure
- Updated on
- Aug 24, 2021
Peer pressure can constitute direct or indirect pressure from a friend or associate which can be very influential in certain situations. It is important that peer pressure is tackled with kindness, respect and most importantly, the person accepts his or her real form, without being influenced by a certain group. Writing essays is a very important part of any curriculum. Here are two useful samples of writing an essay on peer pressure.
Table of contents
Essay on peer pressure (200-300 words), essay on peer pressure (400 – 500 words).
Essay on Women Empowerment
“Confidence is knowing who you are and not changing it a bit because someone’s version of reality is not your reality.”
Peer pressure is an issue that affects many teenagers today. Society offers misleading advertisements that seem to lead teens in unnecessary directions. It is rightly said that if the youth of today are more educated, the future of our world will be a lot better off.
There are many kinds of pressures that children face today. Many times, others put pressure on you to participate in something you might not want to do.
Peer pressure can be stressful because a child might feel pressured by friends and schoolmates to act, behave, think and look a certain way. This kind of pressure can cover everything. Teens face numerous problems that can hamper the decisions they make. Sometimes these decisions are negative ones to fulfil their desire to fit in. Although peer pressure can be extremely strong and hard to resist, there are ways to fight it.
Peer pressure can be tackled by inner strength and self-confidence, through resistance to doing something when you know better. Paying attention to your own feelings and beliefs about what is right and wrong can help you to know the right thing to do.
Also Read: Essay on Education System
Studies have shown how peer pressure can change the mind, despite knowing what is right and wrong. Also, it has been said that all it takes for someone to stand their ground on what they know is right is for one other peer to agree with them. If you face peer pressure on a daily basis, it is always better to talk to someone you trust.
Though peer pressure can have certain advantages like it helps to create a sense of motivation in the person, which further forces the person to cross the barrier and achieve something great. There are many disadvantages of peer pressure which can harm a person in plenty of ways. If any person is not willing to perform a certain task then the peer pressure can be frustrating to him.
It is very easy to get influenced by someone during the glorious youth years. Youth these days are much influenced by the glamorous life of celebrities. It is necessary to judge the outcome of a deed before getting influenced by peers. ( towncville.com ) Furthermore, peer pressure should always be secondary. Your own thoughts and wants should always have the first priority.
Responding to peer pressure is part of human nature — but some children are more likely to give in than others, who are better at resisting and standing their ground. Children who are low on confidence and those ones who tend to follow rather than lead could be more likely to seek their peers’ approval by giving in to a risky and unwanted challenge or suggestion. People who are unsure of themselves, new to the group, or inexperienced with peer pressure may also be more likely to give in to peer pressure.
It is not always easy to resist negative peer pressure, but when you do, it is important and likely that you feel good about it afterwards. And you may even be a positive influence on your peers who feel the same way — often it just takes one person to speak out or take a different action to change a situation. Your friends may follow if you have the courage to do something different or refuse to go along with the group. Consider yourself a leader, and know that you have the potential to make a difference. As the saying goes, “Peer pressure is not always negative. Sometimes, it inculcates new hobbies, habits, attitudes, health conscience or a strong urge to succeed amongst people and where this happens, it is positive.”
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What Is Peer Pressure?
Types, Examples, and How to Deal With Peer Pressure
David Young-Wolff/The Image Bank / Getty Images
- Parental Influence
- Peer Pressure at All Ages
- How to Cope
Peer pressure is the process by which members of the same social group influence other members to do things that they may be resistant to, or might not otherwise choose to do. Peers are people who are part of the same social group, so the term "peer pressure" refers to the influence that peers can have on each other.
Usually, the term peer pressure is used when people are talking about behaviors that are not considered socially acceptable or desirable, such as experimentation with alcohol or drugs.
Though peer pressure is not usually used to describe socially desirable behaviors, such as exercising or studying, peer pressure can have positive effects in some cases.
Types of Peer Pressure
In reality, peer pressure can be either a positive or negative influence that one peer, or group of peers, has on another person. The following six terms are often used to describe the types of peer pressure a person may experience.
Spoken vs. Unspoken Peer Pressure
As the name suggests, spoken peer pressure is when someone verbally influences another person to do something. For instance, a teenager might influence their friend to smoke a cigarette by saying, "Come on, one cigarette won't hurt."
Unspoken peer pressure, on the other hand, is when no one verbally tries to influence you. However, there is still a standard set by the group to behave in a certain way.
Even if no one tells the teenager to smoke a cigarette in the example above, the teen may still feel pressured by their peers to partake in the activity because it seems like everyone is doing it.
Direct vs. Indirect Peer Pressure
Direct peer pressure is when a person uses verbal or nonverbal cues to persuade someone to do something. The example mentioned above of a teen handing another teen a cigarette is also an instance of direct peer pressure because the teen on the receiving end must decide on the spot how they're going to respond.
With indirect peer pressure, no one is singling you out, but the environment you're in may influence you to do something. If you're at a party where everyone is drinking, for instance, you might feel pressured to drink even if no one asks you to.
Positive vs. Negative Peer Pressure
Finally, peer pressure can be described as either positive or negative. Positive peer pressure is when a person is influenced by others to engage in a beneficial or productive behavior.
Negative peer pressure is the influence a person faces to do something they wouldn't normally do or don't want to do as a way of fitting in with a social group. People often face negative peer pressure to drink alcohol, do drugs, or have sex.
Examples of Peer Pressure
Peer pressure causes people to do things they would not otherwise do with the hope of fitting in or being noticed.
Things people may be peer pressured into doing include:
- Acting aggressively (common among men)
- Bullying others
- Doing drugs
- Dressing a certain way
- Drinking alcohol
- Engaging in vandalism or other criminal activities
- Physically fighting
- Only socializing with a certain group
Peer pressure or the desire to impress their peers can override a teen or tween's fear of taking risks, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse for Kids. Risky behavior with drugs and/or alcohol may result in the following:
- Alcohol or drug poisoning
- Driving under the influence (of alcohol or other drugs)
- Sexually transmitted diseases
People can also feel an internal pressure to participate in activities and behaviors they think their peers are doing, which can put them at risk for the following behavioral addictions:
- Food addiction
- Gambling addiction
- Internet addiction
- Sex addiction
- Shopping addiction
- Video game addiction
In the case of teens, parents are rarely concerned about the peer pressure their kids may face to engage in sports or exercise, as these are typically seen as healthy social behaviors. This is OK, as long as the exercise or sport does not become an unhealthy way of coping, excessive to the point of negatively affecting their health, or dangerous (as in dangerous sports).
What starts out as positive peer pressure may become negative pressure if it leads a person to over-identify with sports, for example, putting exercise and competition above all else.
If taken to an extreme, they may develop exercise addiction , causing them to neglect schoolwork and social activities, and ultimately, use exercise and competition in sports as their main outlet for coping with the stresses of life. This can also lead to numerous health consequences.
Examples of Positive Peer Influence
We tend to hear more about the potentially negative effects of peer pressure. But the reality is, peer pressure can be positive. For instance, two friends might put positive pressure on each other to go to the gym together and stay accountable for their fitness goals.
Teens who volunteer in their community can keep each other motivated to participate. This involvement can lead to exposure to role models and eventually lead to the teens becoming positive role models themselves.
You can also positively peer pressure others by the way you respond to situations. For instance, if your friend is body-shaming another person, you can say, "Actually, it can be really harmful to criticize people's bodies like that."
In turn, your friend might reconsider criticizing people based on their appearance. By simply adhering to your own values and sharing them with a friend, you can positively peer pressure them to think before making a negative comment.
Parental Influence vs. Peer Pressure
Although parents worry about the influence of peers, overall, parents also can have a strong influence on whether children succumb to negative peer pressure.
Rather than worrying about the effects of their children's friendships, parents would do well to focus on creating a positive, supportive home environment. That way, even if your child is peer pressured to do something they don't want to do, they'll feel comfortable coming to you to talk about it first.
Role modeling good emotional self-regulation may also help your child stick to their own values when it comes to peer pressure. Self-regulation involves the ability to control thoughts, emotions, and behaviors in order to manage current behavior and achieve long-term goals.
This will teach your child positive ways of solving problems and coping with uncomfortable feelings, rather than trying to escape by doing things to fit into a crowd. Peer pressure to take potentially harmful risks can be balanced by parents ensuring that they set appropriate boundaries, provide support, and help to avoid risks. A few examples:
- Pick up your child from events where alcohol or drugs may have been consumed.
- Provide balanced, truthful information on issues such as alcohol and drug use.
- Stay involved in your child's life. Believe it or not, you are one of their biggest influences and they listen when you talk.
- Urge the importance of thinking before doing. Teach teens to ask themselves questions like: Could this harm me or someone else? Will this put my health or safety at risk? Is it legal? What are the long-term consequences for my health, family, education, and future?
Peer Pressure Beyond Childhood
Adolescents are particularly vulnerable to peer pressure because they are at a stage of development when they are separating more from their parents' influence, but have not yet established their own values or understanding about human relationships or the consequences of their behavior.
They are also typically striving for social acceptance and are more willing to engage in behaviors against their better judgment in order to be accepted.
However, adults are also vulnerable to peer pressure. Many adults are susceptible to drinking too much because their friends are doing it, or putting work before family because they're competing with other people in their office for a promotion.
The bottom line: Being aware of, and carefully choosing the influence of peers that will lead to healthy and happy experiences is a lifelong process.
How to Deal With Peer Pressure
Dealing with peer pressure can be difficult, but below are some ways to help address it.
Take Your Time
Instead of quickly agreeing to do something you'd rather not do, pause and take a few deep breaths . If someone is waiting for you to answer them, tell them you need to take a few days and think about it. It's easier to resist the pressure when you put some time and space between yourself and the situation.
Consider Your Reasons
When you're faced with a choice, ask yourself what your reasons are for doing something. If it's because all of your friends are doing it and you're afraid they won't talk to you if you don't join them, then you may want to reconsider.
You deserve to surround yourself with supportive people who respect your decisions—not people who pressure you into doing something that doesn't feel right.
Saying "no" can be hard, but it's necessary to set healthy boundaries in relationships. If someone persistently pressures you to do something, you can try telling them how it affects you.
For instance, you might say something like, "It upsets me when you offer me a cigarette when you know I don't smoke. I won't be able to keep hanging out with you if you don't respect my answer."
Offer an Alternative
It's possible that a friend who is peer pressuring you simply wants to spend more time with you or connect with you, but they don't know how else to ask.
If they pressure you to do shots with them at the bar when you aren't drinking, for example, you might suggest that you both hit the dance floor instead. Or maybe, you make a plan to go on a hike or to the movies the next time you hang out. That way, you're fulfilling both of your needs in a mutually beneficial way.
Graupensperger SA, Benson AJ, Evans MB. Everyone else is doing it: The association between social identity and susceptibility to peer influence in NCAA athletes . J Sport Exerc Psychol . 2018;40(3):117-127. doi:10.1123/jsep.2017-0339
Morris H, Larsen J, Catterall E, et al. Peer pressure and alcohol consumption in adults living in the UK: A systematic qualitative review . BMC Public Health. 2014;20:1014. doi:10.1186/s12889-020-09060-2
Clark DA, Donnellan MB, Durbin CE, et al. Sex, drugs, and early emerging risk: Examining the association between sexual debut and substance use across adolescence . PLoS ONE. 2020;15(2):e0228432. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0228432
Stanaland A, Gaither S. “Be a man”: The role of social pressure in eliciting men’s aggressive cognition . Pers Soc Psychol Bull. 2021;47(11):1596-1611. doi:10.1177/0146167220984298
Sabramani V, Idris IB, Ismail H, Nadarajaw T, Zakaria E, Kamaluddin MR. Bullying and its associated individual, peer, family and school factors: Evidence from Malaysian National Secondary School students . Int J Environ Res Public Health . 2021;18(13):7208. doi:10.3390/ijerph18137208
Kim J, Fletcher JM. The influence of classmates on adolescent criminal activities in the United States . Deviant Behav . 2018;39(3):275-292. doi:10.1080/01639625.2016.1269563
National Institute on Drug Abuse for Teens. Why Does Peer Pressure Influence Teens To Try Drugs? .
Pamela Rackow, Urte Scholz, Rainer Hornung. Received social support and exercising: An intervention study to test the enabling hypothesis . British Journal of Health Psychology , 2015;20(4):763. doi:10.1111/bjhp.12139
Vogel L. Fat shaming is making people sicker and heavier . CMAJ . 2019;191(23):E649. doi:10.1503/cmaj.109-5758
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By Elizabeth Hartney, BSc, MSc, MA, PhD Elizabeth Hartney, BSc, MSc, MA, PhD is a psychologist, professor, and Director of the Centre for Health Leadership and Research at Royal Roads University, Canada.
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Positive Effects of Peer Pressure
What is peer pressure? Peer pressure is any influence from a group of people that changes a person’s behaviour or attitude. The term ‘peer pressure’ raises a lot of eyebrows; it is automatically assumed that it is inherently negative. However, this is not always the case. Despite the obvious stigma surrounding social influences, it is possible to be pressured in a positive way. There is another side of this phenomenon that most people don’t even consider to be peer pressure. While peer pressure has many negative connotations, it can also be used to help troubled individuals drop bad habits and become better people.
It is commonly acknowledged that peers can have an incredible amount of influence in people's’ lives; they constantly impact goals and mindsets, changing the way people view the world. There is an obvious social stigma that warns of the dangers of peer pressure, and provides skepticism of the influence of people. Teenagers can and are motivated to accomplish more and improve goals through exchange of information with their peers. Peer pressure can serve as powerful encouragement towards beneficial behavior, and more often influences students positively as opposed to negatively.
Students that get good grades often motivate their friends to study harder and do better in school. Getting acquainted with people that have positive attitudes can open students’ minds to new points of view. Schools and teachers often encourage their students to do their best. Being in a positive, supportive environment allows students to grow and mature. Encouraging peers can exercise leadership skills, as well as provide motivation to work harder. It is up to the person on who they choose to surround themselves with. In the book Psychology Around Us, Ronald Comer and Elizabeth Gould (both having taught psychology at Princeton University for a combined 51 years) state that: “In many instances, our performance is enhanced when we are in the presence of others… This phenomenon was later labeled social facilitation, and its study was expanded to include not just physical tasks but also mental tasks.”(Comer, 546) Being with a group of friends allows teens to participate in positive activities they might not have otherwise. Many teens participate in study groups in order to help them absorb the course material better. Simply studying with friends can help teens study and raise their grade. Peer pressure motivates people to take positive actions, and stay away from negative actions that friends might disapprove of. The right friends can provide consultation, encouragement, information, and help teens establish a willingness to succeed.
One of the most lasting friendships one can form is with their families. Parents are crucial when it comes to the development of their children. Parental figures are the ones that engrain certain behaviours into the next generation. These role models provide the guidance that children need in order to grow into productive members of society. Teaching children to encourage each other and treat fellow humans as their colleagues instead of adversaries lets them form mature bonds with their peers throughout their life. Parental authority and peer pressure are often thought of as different social phenomenons; however, there is very little difference between the two. Parents constantly push their ideals and opinions on their children, yet they shun those who do the same in different environments. It is important to remember that everyone is being influenced by everyone else. Every interaction a person has with another person is an example of peer pressure, including those with parents and their children. Most individuals have at least one sibling, if not more.
Younger siblings learn to imitate their older siblings, which forms the basis for how they perceive the world. Everyone who has a sibling knows how difficult it is when they do something disagreeable. Such altercations are normal, and, while they are inconvenient, they teach family members valuable problem solving skills and how to resolve conflicts. This kind of peer pressure is much more constant and regular than that experienced outside of home. First-born siblings often have a lot more life experience than their other siblings - they constantly engage in leadership and helping roles in regards to their younger siblings. This allows younger members of the family to be able to figure out what is and isn't acceptable in society. There is typically a high amount of trust between siblings; if one is thinking of trying something potentially dangerous, they have their sibling to help figure things out. Having close interpersonal relationships allows individuals to develop a sense of kinsmanship with their fellow humans, which helps people connect and unite. Developing this sense can be extremely beneficial in certain circumstances. After 9/11, for example, people put aside their differences and gave their time, money, and support strangers that were affected by the attack. All of the ideas, beliefs, viewpoints, etc. that people grow up with, they all influence and shape citizens into who they are for better or for worse.
Despite the benefits, peer pressure also can have negative effects on people. In Brave New World by Aldous Huxley, the society is primarily a collectivistic culture. One of the main characters by the name of Bernard struggles to conform to fit in with his peers. Many times throughout the novel, Bernard succumbs to peer pressure from his love interest Lenina and from society itself. Despite his attempts to conform, he is still ridiculed and publicly humiliated because of his differences: “The security and stability of Society are in danger. Yes, in danger, ladies and gentlemen… he has proven himself an enemy of Society, a subverter, ladies and gentlemen, of all Order and Stability, a conspirator against Civilization itself.”(Huxley, 149) Today, people are still bullied for being different, though not in as severe a way as in Brave New World. Minorities such as Bernard are often targeted because they do not conform to what society thinks is an acceptable way to exist. Teenagers especially are expected and often required to conform to what is deemed acceptable behavior in their respective schools. There is a lot of pressure on young women to be skinny, to look a certain way in order to be perceived as beautiful due to perpetuation in the media. This kind of pressure causes a lot of mental strain on young girls who are looking to be accepted by their peers.
People in the LGBTQIA+ community are often severely picked on simply because many people do not like their identities. Bullying and harassment are huge issues in our communities, that cause people all over the country to lose sight of themselves and their aspirations in an attempt to fit in with others. However, positive opinions about a certain issue can allow bullied teens to be able to find the strength to be stand up for themselves, and be themselves. Speaking from experience, the mindset of a bullied teenager can change with support from friends and family. There are a lot of movements that focus on eradicating bullying in the United States, such as The Trevor Project, which is a non-profit organization focused on preventing suicide efforts among members of the LGBTQIA+ community. The Kind Campaign is another nonprofit organization that brings awareness to the lasting effects of interfemale bullying. There are just two of the many campaigns that are dedicated to eradicating bullying. While this is still an issue in society today, these movements draw attention to and gives those struggling to fit in inspiration to stand up for themselves and confidence to be themselves.
Students in school are often required to perform peer edits on their classmates’ work periodically. This is often used as a tool by teachers to improve learning in the classroom, and provide students an opportunity to get different perspectives and feedback on their work. In the study “Utilizing peer interactions to promote learning through a web-based peer assessment system” published in the online journal CJLT, it is found that: “...web-based peer assessment can be effective in… reducing management workload, stimulating student interactions, and enhancing student understanding of marking criteria and critical assessment skills.” (Lan, 01) Editing peers’ essays, assignments, etc. is advantageous in that it allows for students to interact with each other in positive, beneficial ways, whilst still allowing them to provide accurate feedback on the level of work. Information is easily shared between people of the same age; teens speak the same language and can understand each other well. Messages delivered by peers are often more personalized and relatable, which allows teens to be more likely to react positively to constructive criticism.
Changes in perspective due to positive pressure from peers can become an inspiration. Many people believe that peer pressure will cause their children to resort to drugs and/or other unhealthy habits. In some cases, this is true. However, in the right environment, pressure from peers can cause substantial growth in individuals, helping them develop habits that will stick with them for the rest of their lives. Humans are naturally social creatures with a desire to fit in and be accepted. This can cause people to make mistakes and fall in with the wrong crowd, but it can also cause them to rectify those mistakes. Everyone has experienced peer pressure in some form or another throughout their lives, whether it be from family members pushing them to be their best, or the childhood bully who could not accept someone different from them. Pressure from society will always be there; it is up to the individual on how to use that in the best way possible.
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How Peer Pressure Affects All Ages
- Is It Always Bad?
- Why Young People Are More Susceptible
- How to Overcome
Frequently Asked Questions
Peer pressure is any type of influence, positive or negative, that comes from a peer group. This peer group may be of similar age (e.g., children in the same classroom) but can also be defined by other commonalities, including motherhood, professional affiliations, and your local neighborhood. Peer pressure occurs throughout the lifespan, but learning to cope by building self-confidence and surrounding yourself with positive influences may help prevent problems with peer pressure from arising later.
This article will explain what peer pressure looks like in young adults and teens and how it can affect adults.
skynesher / Getty Images
Statistics About Peer Pressure
Peer pressure is more than someone asking you to try drugs or drink alcohol. The following were listed as the top pressures experienced by teens aged 13 to 17 in one study:
- Academic achievement (61% responded they feel pressure to get strong grades)
- Looking a certain way (29% felt pressure to look “good”)
- Fit into social peer groups (28% )
- Be more involved in extracurriculars and be good at athletics (21%)
- Drug and alcohol use (4 and 6%, respectively)
Young Adults and Teens
Young adults and teens face similar peer pressure, but gender can affect how these pressures are internalized and expressed. For example, of the 29% of teens who responded they felt peer pressure to look “good,” girls were more likely than boys to say they feel a lot of pressure to look good (35% vs. 23%).
It Can Affect Adults Too
Adults are not exempt from facing societal expectations and peer judgment or influence. For example, you may carry the pressure of academic achievement into your career. You may also face challenges like wanting to “keep up with the Jones’” and feel pressure to purchase items you cannot afford to maintain an image that fits into your work, social, or neighborhood environment.
Examples and Types of Peer Pressure
You can experience peer pressure from people without them saying anything to you, and you can experience it from direct remarks made by others.
Implicit peer pressure is the subtle type that pulls you into conforming to a social group to increase your chances of acceptance. For example, seeing other people who are considered "cool" drinking at a party.
We hear much more about explicit peer pressure, as it is easier to detect and recognize as problematic. It sounds like someone telling you to stop worrying, start having fun and be part of the group by participating in something you don't feel comfortable with. It may also be a threat, such as, "You can't hang out with us if you're not going to drink."
Is Peer Pressure Always Negative?
Peer pressure is not always negative. Trying to fit into a healthy social group, for example, of peers getting good grades, joining sports teams, and making plans for their futures, is positive. Some refer to this type of peer “pressure” as peer “influence.”
According to Brett Laursen, Ph.D., a fellow of the American Psychological Association whose work focuses on the outcome of children’s interactions with peers and parents, peer influence can occur anytime one peer is more “influential” than the other.
Benefits of Peer Influence
Peer influence can show you there is support, encouragement, and community available to you. By seeing someone else do something positive, even if it’s challenging, you may reflect on your own life choices, goals, and where you spend your time.
Examples of positive peer influence include:
- Joining an extracurricular activity or trying a new hobby
- Challenging and not participating in gossip
- Avoiding drugs and alcohol
- Working to save money for college
- Going to therapy (solo or couples)
- Making a career change
Why Young People Are More Susceptible
Young people may be more susceptible to peer pressure because their identities are still forming; they desire to fit in and not be bullied and have less risk aversion than adults.
In addition, a combination of other age-related and developmental factors contribute to youth’s increased susceptibility to peer pressure:
- They may be less averse to risk, loss, and punishment
- They may be more vulnerable to the effects of reward
- They favor immediate over delayed prospects
The risks associated with peer pressure may not be immediately obvious or seem like cautionary tales, but they are serious and can have life-altering consequences.
Peer pressure to use substances like alcohol and cannabis can unfold into problems with substance abuse .
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), teen substance use affects brain development and can contribute to adult health problems, including heart disease, high blood pressure, and sleep disorders.
In Sexual Situations
Peer pressure can lead a person to engage in sexual activity before they are ready. It may also influence the person to participate in unsafe, risky, or dangerous sexual activities. The consequences may include being exposed to a sexually transmitted infection (STI), developing pregnancy, or having images of yourself posted online without consent.
Being pressured by peers can be a stressful experience, whether it happens in person or online . It may shake your sense of identity and self-confidence and may contribute to excessive worry. In addition, prolonged exposure to this type of stress and tension may be a factor in mental health concerns such as anxiety and depression .
Rising Above Peer Pressure
Rising above peer pressure means not giving into the pull of others to act in a certain way. No matter your age, you can practice not giving into negative peer pressure and work on surrounding yourself with more positive influences.
Some ways of coping with peer pressure include:
- Not spending time with people who pressure you to do things that feel wrong or dangerous.
- Having difficult conversations , learning to say "no," and practicing leaving situations that feel unsafe or uncomfortable. This may include calling a parent or spouse for support.
- Befriending people who resist negative peer pressure and/or who have a positive influence.
- Talking to a trusted peer or professional (teacher, counselor) if you have problems saying “no” or are feeling pressured to change something about yourself.
Peer pressure is about the influence of others. It can be implicit or explicit, positive or negative. When the pressure is positive, encouraging you to become a better version of yourself, it may be referred to as peer “influence.” While peer influence can improve your life, peer pressure can cause problems. For example, you may feel pressure to do unsafe things that have risks you may not fully know. Resisting peer pressure can involve avoiding it, saying no, and surrounding yourself with more positive influences.
A Word From Verywell
Peer pressure is a part of life, but that doesn’t mean you need to be negatively influenced by it. If you're feeling pressured to do things that may make you feel bad about yourself, consider talking to a trusted person for support. Recognizing when peer pressure is negative and potentially harmful versus when it is positive, and potentially life-enhancing can help you make healthy choices about who you let into your inner circle. If you have made poor choices in the past due to peer pressure, forgive yourself with the intention to do better next time.
Knowing your personal values, the difference between right and wrong, and that you have support from positive influences may help with confidence when avoiding social pressure. Sometimes you may not feel confident in saying no, but the more you practice your personal boundaries, the easier it should become.
No, peer pressure does not make you a pushover. Peer pressure is difficult to avoid, and giving into it only means you may need to reassess your values and whether or not you have the right kind of support in your life. Shaming yourself or identifying with the pushover role only serves to further break down confidence that may leave you more vulnerable to negative peer pressure.
Peer pressure affects us on a societal level because it can set into motion a series of negative experiences and consequences that alter a person’s story. If a person continues to follow the lead of negative influences, they may be put on a path toward consequences such as substance abuse and risky sexual situations (both of which may have life-altering consequences).
Peer pressure doesn’t suddenly appear at a certain age. Peer pressure transcends age groups and can begin before the first day of school at daycare, playgroup, and more. Once a child begins seeing themselves as a part of a community, the desire to fit in may occur for better or worse.
American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry. Peer pressure .
Pew Research. Most U.S. teens see anxiety and depression as a major problem among their peers .
American Psychological Association. Speaking of psychology: the good and bad of peer pressure .
Barbalat G, Domenech P, Vernet M, Fourneret P. Approche neuroéconomique de la prise de risque à l'adolescence [risk-taking in adolescence: a neuroeconomics approach] . Encephale . 2010;36(2):147-54. doi:10.1016/j.encep.2009.06.004
National Institute on Drug Abuse for Teens. Why does peer pressure influence teens to try drugs?
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Teen substance use and risk .
Widman L, Choukas-Bradley S, Helms SW, Prinstein MJ. Adolescent susceptibility to peer influence in sexual situations . J Adolesc Health . 2016;58(3):323-329. doi:10.1016/j.jadohealth.2015.10.253
American Psychological Association. Stress .
By Michelle Pugle Michelle Pugle, MA, MHFA is a freelance health writer as seen in Healthline, Health, Everyday Health, Psych Central, and Verywell.
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Peer Pressure: Positive and Negative Effects Essay
Introduction, positive effects of peer pressure in my life, negative effects of peer pressure in my life, works cited.
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Peer pressure is an individual or a group’s influence on others for them to act differently, change their beliefs, attitudes, or traits to be able to suit or conform to a specified norm. Initially, an individual may not support a specified norm or action but may end up conforming to the same one after external influence from the peer group or other individuals. Solomon Asch, who conducted Asch conformity experiments, asserts that conformity to normative influence is aimed at gaining social approval or reward; it avoids social punishment or disapproval from influencing peers or groups. In my lifetime, there have been many cases when I was influenced by peer pressure, both positively and negatively (Savage 67).
Although peer pressure is usually attributed to negative behaviors and attitudes, in reality, it has both negative and positive effects on an individual. The effects of peer pressure depend on the nature of the influencing group. A bad group may influence an individual in a wrong way, while a good group may instill in a person positive values. Examples of negative peer influence include making wrong decisions, loss of identity, and development of bad habits, while positive peer influence includes exposure to the world, adopting positive habits, and overcoming bad habits. However, the negative effects of peer pressure are more apparent than its benefits (Raum 72).
There are several instances when peer pressure has been instrumental in shaping my attitudes, behaviors, and beliefs positively. Group work has been influential in ensuring my success in academics. When I was in high school, I happened to be assigned to a discussion group that was comprised of people who valued the process of studying a lot. Initially, I was not keen on my studies and I did not want to participate in academic activities which I considered irrelevant, but since members of my group valued education highly, in the end, I had to adapt their studying spirit. The influence of the group played a key role in my academic success. Some of the positive values that the group instilled in me are honesty in academics, hard work in my fields of study, and good management of time. Further, the group influenced my social life by helping me to be a responsible and disciplined individual (Savage 71).
Being an ardent Christian, I considered taking alcohol as immoral, sinful, and unethical. However, the influence of peer pressure made me consume alcohol. One summer, my college friend invited me to a party that had a lot of nice meals and drinks, both alcoholic and nonalcoholic. During that party, my friends were taking alcohol and I was the only person who did not take alcoholic drinks. At first, I rejected their attempt to lure me into taking alcohol but after some time, I went against my principles and tasted some alcohol. I took alcohol to have my friends’ social approval. Although I never tried taking alcohol after that case, my experience proves that peer pressure is a powerful tool that, can influence one to get involved in negative behaviors (Raum 88).
In conclusion, it must be highlighted that Solomon Asch was right when he stated that peer pressure is a powerful tool that can influence an individual to do what he or she did not anticipate. Peer pressure may influence a person positively or negatively. One conforms to the norms of a group to gain social reward or avoid group punishment.
Raum, Elizabeth. Peer Pressure . Chicago: Heinemann Library, 2008. Print.
Savage, Lorraine. Peer Pressure . Detroit, MI: Greenhaven Press, 2009. Print.
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Writing help, paraphrasing tool, the impact of peer pressure on the esteem of children essay.
- Adolescence , Child , Clinical Psychology , Neuroscience , Peer pressure , Social Psychology
How it works
- 2 Introduction
- 3 Conclusion
- 4 References
The paper is about self-esteem in children and young adults which occur as a result of peer pressure among other factors. The focus has however been put on peer pressure as an agent of self-esteem in this group of individuals. In the introduction, attention is concentrated on how these two things are always interrelated. Deeper into the paper, the relationship between peer pressure and self-esteem are identified as a way of creating an understanding of these two issues better. The paper goes ahead to look at the main part of the work: the impacts of peer pressure on self-esteem to these young adults and children. The paper looks at all the areas affected by this problem from the family to the children too. In making this work worth a piece of importance, the paper goes ahead to talk about the possible solutions towards mitigating this problem. It highlights the importance of parents, teachers and other people as the key agents of operation in working towards achieving this since they are the ones dealing directly with these children. Coping mechanisms and regular counseling are viewed as the main elements that can foster children into escaping the trap of low self-esteem. In the end, the paper concludes by emphasizing on parents and teachers to use the opportunity they have at hand towards helping children out of this problem.
According to Marshall and others (2009), peer pressure is defined as the internal force that makes one give away all that they can to fit into a group of those around them. It is when one is influenced people around to at in a manner that pleases these individuals. Psychologically, one will never develop a thought process of establishing whether the activities they want to be engaged in is a good one or not (Martyn?Nemeth et.al, 2009). It all depends on the agents of the pressure. Whereby the agents of the pressure are those influencing the subject. The origins of peer pressure have been in existence from the beginning of the world. It was because of peer pressure that Eve opted to heed the lies of the serpent, into disobeying God (Genesis 3:1-6, NKJV). Going further we see the disciples of Jesus being influenced by Him to the extent that they want to know how to pray the same way the Jesus prays (Luke 11:1-13, NKJV). These two scenarios from the Bible give a clear indication of the two facets of peer pressure, that is, it can impact a person in either a good or a bad way. The direction of the impact will depend heavily on those influencing the change in character (Marshall et.al, 2009).
Self-esteem in psychology is viewed as the way a person evaluates his or her worthiness (Blomfield Neira & Barber 2013). It is more of an emotional judgment of one’s self and the attitude that one will develop towards themselves after concluding the value they possess. It is a very paramount agent of an individual’s confidence towards a thing that they are involved with when it comes to performance. When one feels that they are valued as individuals, they will have high self-esteem which automatically translates to high levels of confidence. Blomfield Neira and others emphasize that extremely low levels of self- esteem can even lead to a person rejecting their being (2013). Self-esteem just like peer pressure it is as old as it can be remembered. In the encounter of Job and those wanting him to forsake God, in addition to the faith he had in God, he also viewed himself to be worth more than what he was going through. His high self-esteem was fundamental to see him through (Job 13:1-4).
When it comes to children, these two entities are so good to get over them and be able to alter their character attitude and emotions towards specific things in their lives. Children from the age of 5 years have their social cognitive function and process well developed, and this develops their aspect of being social beings (Marshal et.al, 2009). Any child that refrains from interacting with others has an issue that needs attention. At this development stage, the interactions make them feel accepted, and the desire for recognition develops. In the process, one will want to be like another kid maybe because they have a better toy than theirs or even they can play a given sport better. This aspect of peer pressure is thus developed. In such a scenario, two possibilities will either enhance the self-esteem of the kid or lower it depending on whether the kid will eventually have a chance to be like the mate or not.
In adolescents, it is worse. At this age, the kid has an opportunity to explore from friends since it is when he or she is allowed some freedom. Much of the time is spent away from the family, and mostly with friends. At this point, one is always desperate to fit into the expectations of the other (Martyn?Nemeth et.al, 2009). This makes them ready to do what it takes to look the same as those around them. The problem comes in when there are obstacles around that restrict individuals from becoming like this new society. There will be feelings of alienation which lowers their self-esteem (Patchin & Hinduja, 2010). In such instances, they may even lack a personal identity for themselves. If they can match the character of those around them, for example, the kid joins the band and begins taking drugs, they will have a feeling of achievement and acceptance. This in return boosts their confidence and self-esteem as explained by (Martyn?Nemeth et.al, 2009).
As stated earlier, the impacts can be positive or negative depending on the causes. The kid may end up attaining to fit in the group, but the worry remains of what this group is involved with. For young children, as they desire to be like some, most are due to materialistic issues. If there is no one around to help the child work through it. This can be accomplished by getting them what they want, they will feel unwanted, and therefore their esteem is lowered. This makes them refrain from others as he feels incomplete (Patchin & Hinduja, 2010). This will also make them develop feelings of agitation especially the kids that initiated the pressure on them. In other cases, rebellion ends up being the only weapon remaining (Ahmed, Ho, Zazed, Van Niekerk, & Lee 2016). Such feeling will make the kid unhappy, and this can be seen in their dislike of things that they have liked. A good example can be a favorite toy or television show.
If the kid can get someone who will note the changes or will hear from the kid of what they want and be able to provide what they want self-esteem will be enhanced. They will end up feeling loved and cared for, and this boosts their emotions and attitude towards life (Patchin & Hinduja, 2010). If it is something related to schoolwork, they will develop an acute interest in school. A kid who wants a bicycle to ride to school just like others. The parents help them to achieve that. So, it will be noted that they are always interested in going to school. This, in the long run, will enhance their class work.
In adolescents, the flow of events is the same with the difference being that, in this case, the impacts are more adverse and difficult to reverse. As this young man gains confidence due to acceptability in that new family. They lose the respect that is expected of them towards their parents, guardians and even teachers. The kid will have false confidence that this new group will always be by their side (Patchin & Hinduja, 2010). Parent and teachers will experience a lack of control over this kid since there is nothing, they can do to get his or her attention. This has been a very common problem in most households (Ahmed, Ho, Zazed, Van Niekerk, & Lee 2016). Such events trigger misunderstandings especially among spouses since one sees the other as if they have negated their obligation leading to the kid slipping out of their control.
Patchin & Hinduja, however, highlights the positive dimensions of peer pressure (2010). In constructive areas like class work or sporting activities, peer pressure will always enhance hard work and better results. He highlights how the adolescent will be happy and feeling accepted. Since there are people around ready to help them to achieve what they desire from their peers (Marshall et.al, 2009). The environment is even made more conducive since there is a reward. This has made such children develop high esteem and confidence, and as a result, they end up creating good foundations for their bright future.
Worst case scenarios are when the child has failed to fit into the group and yet there is no one around to help them cope with it. In most cases, a child is usually faced with the challenge of wanting to engage in immoral behavior as a way of getting accepted. A good foundation from the family makes some of these kids to find it hard to engage in activities such as drug and substance abuse and premarital sex. Since their earlier growth makes them view this as an impossible activity to engage in (Martyn?Nemeth et.al, 2009). This is, in fact, the most dangerous position that a young adult can find themselves in. The failed mission to keep up with peer pressure makes such children end up not knowing what they want in life. The low self-esteem makes the children end up in a low moment whereby they will even lack the purpose of life. Psychologically, they will be in deep mental and emotional torture (Martyn?Nemeth et.al, 2009).
The issue of mitigating these scary scenarios related to low self-esteem in children lies to those around the children. It should be noted that all adults are given the mandate of ensuring that kids all have a divine role in ensuring they are safe (Ephesians 6:4, NKJV). Both guardians and teachers have to check on the progress of their children. To protect them from any cause of low self-esteem to include peer pressure. There are a couple of ways of protecting children from such problems that can not only affect the kid but also the entire family.
Parents are expected to be close to their children. So, they can note any changes in their behavior. Through this, they can take note in good time regarding self-esteem issues and eventually enable them to seek help in time (Marshall et.al, 2009). Dealing with adolescents is usually a challenge to many parents; however, one keyway of winning their trust is by being a good listener to them. Martyn?Nemeth and others highlight how giving adolescents a listening ear can make them open about their inner troubles (2009).
It is evident that peer pressure has self-esteem issues as some of its repercussions. The problem has impacted heavily on the development of young children and created hurdles to the transition period that adolescents usually face. All is not lost, however. Parents and teachers need to work tightly together and bring the children closer to them as a way of understanding them better, and this allows the depressed kids to speak out of their misery. Through this, self-esteem issues in children will be unheard of.
- Gerber, M., & Pühse, U. (2008). “Don’t crack under pressure!”—Do leisure time physical activity and self-esteem moderate the relationship between school-based stress and psychosomatic complaints?. Journal of psychosomatic research, 65(4), 363-369.
- Ahmed, M. D., Ho, W. K. Y., Zazed, K., Van Niekerk, R. L., & Lee, J. L. (2016). The adolescent age transition and the impact of physical activity on perceptions of success, self-esteem and well-being. Journal of Physical Education and Sport, 16(3), 776-784. doi:http://dx.doi.org.ezproxy.liberty.edu/10.7752/jpes.2016.03124
- Marshall, W. L., Marshall, L. E., Serran, G. A., & O’Brien, M. D. (2009). Self-esteem, shame, cognitive distortions and empathy in sexual offenders: Their integration and treatment implications. Psychology, Crime & Law, 15(2-3), 217-234.
- Martyn?Nemeth, P., Penckofer, S., Gulanick, M., Velsor?Friedrich, B., & Bryant, F. B. (2009). The relationships among self?esteem, stress, coping, eating behavior, and depressive mood in adolescents. Research in nursing & health, 32(1), 96-109.614-621.
- Patchin, J. W., & Hinduja, S. (2010). Cyberbullying and self?esteem. Journal of school health, 80(12),
- Blomfield Neira, C. J. & Barber, B. L. (2013). Social networking site use: Linked to adolescents’ social self?concept, self?esteem, and depressed mood. Australian Journal of Psychology 2014; 66: 56–64. https://doi-org.ezproxy.liberty.edu/10.1111/ajpy.12034
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Positive Effects of Peer Pressure: Essay Example
Positive effects of peer pressure: essay abstract, positive effects of peer pressure: essay introduction, positive effects of peer pressure, the avoidance of negative peer pressure, positive effects of peer pressure: essay conclusion, essay voice-over.
The paper dwells on the analysis of the positive effects that peer pressure can have on adolescents. At the same time, the negative implications of peer pressure are acknowledged. The influence of peer pressure on teens’ development in various dimensions is discussed. It is noted that such negative habits as smoking, substance abuse, and careless driving can be mitigated with the application of positive peer pressure. The paper also emphasizes the role of teachers and parents in the formation of adolescents’ social interactions. With the help of a carefully crafted approach, it is possible to turn peer pressure from a challenging issue into a beneficial phenomenon.
Peer pressure can have a significant impact on almost every aspect of a teenager’s life. However, while peer pressure is commonly viewed as a negative phenomenon, it can also have many positive aspects. Peer pressure has the potential to help teens grow as individuals and adopt good habits. Therefore, it is necessary to investigate the positive features peer pressure can enhance, as well as analyze the negative ones that should be eliminated.
As the state of being affected by one’s peers, peer pressure is a focus of research involving both positive and negative implications. While scholars mostly emphasized the negative impact of peer pressure in the past, recent studies indicate the beneficial effects of such a social phenomenon. The most evident influence of peer pressure is that it helps individuals analyze their habits and reflect on their ways of life. Research indicates that with the help of peer pressure, it is possible to mitigate serious health-related and behavioral problems. For instance, Bilgiç and Günay (2018) report that peer education is a highly effective approach to generating positive behavioral changes regarding teen smoking. Scholars note that peer education helps to eliminate the use of tobacco by teenagers. Positive peer pressure has also been reported by Goode, Balzarini, and Smith (2014), who found that it could decrease undergraduate drinking. Finally, Alinier and Verjee (2015) report that it is possible to promote driving safety using positive peer pressure. All of these studies demonstrate that following someone’s positive example can help young people to change themselves for the better.
Additionally, peer pressure has a considerable positive impact on young people’s education. According to Baruah and Boruah (2016), teenagers’ brain shows better activity when their classmates observe them. Seeing one’s peers achieve their goals can make one more persistent and goal-oriented. As Baruah and Boruah (2016) mention, peer pressure can serve as “a powerful source of reinforcement” (p. 241). One of the ways of increasing teenagers’ interest in academic improvement is arranging pair and group tasks where they have to interact and collaborate to reach the best outcome.
Additionally, peer pressure can develop young individuals’ understanding of social relationships and teach them to evaluate others’ ideas, compromise, or refuse to accept some issues. Teenagers’ emotional and social support of one another is revealed through peer communication. Hence, peer pressure can also perform the function of enhancement of such communication.
Despite several positive effects of peer pressure, there are also negative ones, such as the increase in teenagers’ inclination to careless driving, participation in criminal activity, or engaging in negative health behaviors. However, with carefully selected strategies, it is possible to avoid such adverse outcomes of peer pressure. Thus, promoting enough education and communication regarding establishing healthy relationships is essential for teenagers. In this respect, it is necessary to increase the quality of parent-teen relationships, as well as enhance school connectedness (Zhu et al., 2015). A vulnerable group of adolescents is represented by teens with disabilities, who need additional training in handling negative peer pressure (Khemka et al., 2016). By arranging positive relations among teens, parents, and schools, it is easier to avoid adverse implications.
Peer pressure can be both stimulating and discouraging in striving for better academic performance. As Bursztyn, Egorov, and Jensen (2019) report, the establishment of identity among adolescents may trigger both positive and negative effects of peer pressure. The teacher must arrange an environment where students feel safe and unwilling to give up because of their peers’ mockery. Korir and Kipkemboi (2014) also emphasize the teacher’s role in creating a positive peer-pressure atmosphere. Finally, the role of the family in avoiding negative peer pressure should not be underestimated (Telzer et al., 2018). Parents should teach their children that their behaviors impact others, as well as that they should not be discouraged by others’ negative attitudes.
Peer pressure plays a crucial role in developing young people’s values, habits, principles, and behaviors. Even though peer pressure is primarily viewed as a negative phenomenon, it is impossible to overestimate its positive qualities. Teachers and parents, who perform the function of guidance counselors and behavior regulators, should help teens to make the best out of peer pressure effects on the development of positive features.
Alinier, G., & Verjee, M. (2015). Encouraging a driving safety culture through positive peer pressure with courtesy. Journal of Local and Global Health Science, 2015 (2), 18.
Baruah, P., & Boruah, B. (2016). Positive peer pressure and behavioral support. Indian Journal of Positive Psychology, 7 (2), 241–243.
Bilgiç, N., & Günay, T. (2018). Evaluation of the effectiveness of peer education on smoking behavior among high school students. Saudi Medical Journal, 39 (1), 74–80.
Bursztyn, L., Egorov, G., & Jensen, R. (2019). Cool to be smart or smart to be cool? Understanding peer pressure in education. The Review of Economic Studies, 86 (4), 1487–1526.
Goode, C., Balzarini, R. H., & Smith, H. J. (2014). Positive peer pressure: Priming member prototypicality can decrease undergraduate drinking. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 44 , 567–578.
Khemka, I., Hickson, L., & Mallory, S. B. (2016). Evaluation of a decision-making curriculum for teaching adolescents with disabilities to resist negative peer pressure. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 46 (7), 2372–2384.
Korir, D., & Kipkemboi, F. (2014). The impact of school environment and peer influences on students’ academic performance in Vihiga County, Kenia. International Journal of Humanities and Social Science, 5 (1), 240–251.
Telzer, E. H., van Hoorn, J., Rogers, C. R., & Do, K. T. (2018). Social influence on positive youth development: A developmental neuroscience perspective. Advances in Child Development and Behavior, 54 , 215–258.
Zhu, J., Zhang, W., Yu, C., & Bao, Z. (2015). Early adolescent Internet game addiction in context: How parents, school, and peers impact youth. Computers in Human Behavior, 50 , 159–168.
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Essay Example on the Causes and Effects of Peer Pressure
Individuals of all ages have at one point in their lives experienced peer pressure. This is due to the simple fact that all people have peers. Although peer pressure is mostly associated with the teenage and young adult years, all people at all levels in the society are susceptible to the impacts of peer pressure in our social and professional lives. Having peers in our lives is beneficial as they can help us to stay motivated, to grow and to inspire, however, having peers also means that there is a chance of experiencing peer pressure. Peer pressure thus can be defined the pressure asserted by members of an individuals peer group through encouragement or distress to adopt certain values, take certain actions, or make decisions, that one would not normally make with the expected result of conformity so as to be accepted by their peers.
Furthermore, currently, peer pressure has become a major issue in the society as the need to conform has led numerous teenagers all over the world to engage in activities that are immoral, unacceptable and at times dangerous. As a result, one of the major causes of peer pressure is the need to be recognized and accepted in a particular clique so as to be like the peers one admires and to do and have what others in the group or clique have (All Psychology Careers). This need thus leads to certain influences that make one do things that are illegal, unhealthy or immoral such as taking alcohol, smoking or engaging in risky sexual behaviors.
Closely related to the need to belong to a certain group, another cause of peer pressure is the need to gain social acceptance and avoid rejection. Individuals, more so teens, who are different from the rest of the population in terms of opinions, preferences, lifestyle or physique are at more risk of being teased and bullied by their peers. Consequently, in order to avoid such situations, individuals that are different will easily succumb to peer pressure in order to gain social recognition so as to ultimately belong to the dominant group in the society (Karakos 219). Such pressure thus leads to the influence of ones opinions, values, and preferences such that they are altered to be more in line with the opinions, values, and preferences of the dominant group.
Another cause of peer pressure is the curiosity to try new things. This influence is related to the need by individuals, more specifically teenagers, to establish and develop their unique personal identity. In the teenage years, teenagers spend less time with their parents and more with their peers, thus they differentiate themselves from their parents and become more independent through participation in peer groups. Thus, as the life under parental rule begins to clash more and more, the need to strengthen ones personal identity increases which leads to one participating in various actions and making various decisions with the aim of establishing a unique identity and grow more independent (All Psychology Careers). Incidentally, such actions and decisions are oftentimes influenced peers which can then lead to negative or positive effects.
There are various effects of peer pressure, which in most cases are negative. One of the major adverse effects of peer pressure is the decline of an individuals level of self-confidence. Peer pressure can lead a once self-confident individual to be doubtful and unsure of himself/herself which may lead to a decline in self-esteem as well as negative impacts on ones general well-being (Karakos 221). Furthermore, in the case of teenagers, peer pressure can lead to a negative impact on their academics. As stated earlier, one of the major causes of peer pressure is the need to be accepted. As such, for a teenager, the need for approval from their peers has a higher priority than their parents and teacher. As a result, other aspects of their lives such as academics are adversely affected because although a particular teenager is capable of performing well academically, such a teenager will not be able to, as they have placed more emphasis on being more acceptable to the peers as opposed to working on their academics.
Additionally, peer pressure can lead to the adoption of dangerous behaviors. In the more extreme forms of peer pressure, the propagation of such harmful habits as the use of alcohol, smoking, and drug abuse is the norm. Although most individuals are aware that such habits are unhealthy and at times illegal, most teenagers are willing to adopt such habits with complete disregard for future consequences so as to be accepted by their peers (Karakos 223). Also, the need for acceptance can make certain individuals be ashamed of themselves and their families. In the school environment, the student body is typically composed of people from various socioeconomic backgrounds. The diversity in the economic backgrounds thus forms a basis of distinction and for students that come from a poor background, they may feel ashamed of themselves and their families as they feel to be lesser individuals in the eyes of their well-off peers.
However, not all effects of peer pressure are negative, there are various positive effects related to peer pressure as well. In fact, recent studies on the effects of peer pressure are revealing that peer pressure is the most effective strategy for teens to engage in good behavior and make smart decisions in their lives (Paul). Peer pressure can help motivate teenagers to aim higher and accomplish more through healthy competition and exchange of ideas and information with their peers. Furthermore, peer pressure motivates individuals to take up positive activities and actions that their peers are engaging in as well as helping to stay away from activities that peers do not approve.
For instance, one is more likely to engage in a positive activity if ones peers are also engaging in such an activity as well. In addition, statistics from a survey conducted by the Survelum Public Data Bank reveal that peer pressure does not always have a negative influence on teens. This assertion was supported by the data as forty-nine percent of the participants stated that they did not make bad decision so as to impress their peers with only thirty-one percent stating that their actions were negatively influenced by their peers (Survelum Public Data Bank).
Another major positive effect of peer pressure is that it can be utilized to spread awareness and reach vulnerable people that may be isolated in regards to other types of communication. Information can be spread easily through peers as they speak the same language thus can easily understand each other. For instance, teenagers and young adults applying to a high school or college program can exchange information and ideas about the application process, the quality of teaching in various programs and future curriculum (Karakos 224). Furthermore, peer education programs are more effective at spreading valuable information as peers are able to educate and inform each other on destructive activities and their consequences and such messages are more internalized and personalized as they are delivered by peers thus are more likely to result to a positive change in attitudes.
Peer pressure is clearly a major issue in our society. As such, there is need to gain a comprehensive understanding of the subject in order to be able to know its causes and reap more positive benefits. In regards to achieving this objective, parents and teachers alike should ensure from an early age that children are not getting mixed up with the wrong crowd as well as providing comprehensive knowledge on the adverse effects of peer pressure. As stated above, there are numerous positive effects of peer pressure, and by associating with the right peers, one can gain encouragement, motivation, valuable information and the willingness to succeed.
All Psychology Careers. Peer Pressure. 2017. Web. 25 November 2017.
Karakos, Holly. "Positive Peer Support or Negative Peer Influence? The Role of Peers among Adolescents in Recovery High Schools." Peabody Journal of Education (2014): 214-228.
Paul, Annie Murphy. "Peer Pressure Has a Positive Side." 1 November 2015. Scientific America. Document. 25 November 2017.
Survelum Public Data Bank. Peer Pressure Survey Statistics at Survelum Public Data Bank. 2013. Web. 25 November 2017.
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Research Paper on the Effects of Peer Pressure
Peer pressure is considered a rite of passage that all individuals have to go through. However, the effects of peer pressure vary from one individual to another. In terms of definition, peer pressure can be defined as the influence that individuals, people and or friends are capable of exerting on other individuals. Herbst and Alexandre (61) note that it is imperative to comprehend that though peer pressure can prove to be beneficial, in most instances, it has been observed that peer pressure is also capable of having negative impacts on both an individual and the society. Furthermore, the thoughts, tastes of fashion behavior, music, television, and other ways of the masses influence how individuals live in the society. Individuals tend to be influenced by the behaviors of other people in their group. This paper discusses both the positive and negative impacts of peer pressure.
Negative impacts of peer pressure
A dip in self-confidence is one of the key effects of negative peer pressure. Peer pressure can take an individual who is normally confident to have low self-confidence. As a result, the individuals affected by the low self-confidence become unsure of themselves and low self-esteem creeps in. the low confidence often influences the life of an individual. For many teenagers, there is a general feeling that they have to be accepted by a particular group. This approval by their peer group can translate to the teenagers having higher beliefs on their peer groups than those of their parents. This, in turn, can have a negative effect on their academics. In some instances, the academics of the teenagers are affected not because they are not in a position to perform well but because they do not perform deliberately because in the eyes of their peers they do not want to look uncool. In some instances, the academics of the individuals are affected because, in the bid to fit into a certain group, there is a larger emphasis that is placed on being social in the group than working on their academics.
The second effect of peer pressure is that an individual can easily adopt dangerous habits. Research has depicted that the extreme form of peer pressure can propagate bad habits that include alcoholism, drug abuse, and smoking. Technically many individuals know that these habits are not good to cultivate, howler, they tend to excuse it with a brash confidence that they need to feel part of a group. At that point, in life, the actions that they undertake do not seem to have a negative consequence (Georganas et al., 18). In the end, however, such individuals may end up addicted to such habits. In extreme instances, such individuals tend to feel ashamed of their family members in addition to themselves. A good example is that of teenagers who come from different economic backgrounds. If an individual comes from a poor economic background, then such individuals tend to feel lesser than their companions who come from well to do families. In the instance that these occur, the affected individuals will distance themselves from their families and friends. It is however not all instances that the teenagers shut themselves completely out of their families that they are affected negatively. It is the shutting out of other people in the society that often than not ends up in bad company.
In extreme peer pressure cases, some individuals engage in suicide ideation and self-harm. The effect can be so bad that the affected individuals cannot stand their own skins due to alienation from friends and family that they become depressed and anxious (Bingham et al.,54). In such circumstances, the affected individuals could attempt self-harm or entertain the thoughts of committing suicide.
Positive effects of peer pressure
However, there have been numerous negative effects of peer pressure; the society needs to recognize that there are indeed numerous positive effects of peer pressure. Individuals can be motivated to accomplish many feats and aim higher through competition from their peers. It is the peer pressure that persons have that can serve as a powerful encouragement tool towards beneficial behavior. Peer pressure motivates individuals to take the positive actions that their fellow peers are taking while at the same time persuading them to stay away from the negative influences that their friends do not approve. Individuals are more likely to participate in positive activities that their peers participated in previously (Bursztyn, and Jensen, 34).
Since their peers influence many teenagers, it is the peer pressure that they feel that can be used to spread awareness amongst themselves and reach vulnerable teenagers who might have been isolated in the past in terms of other forms of communication. Information can easily be passed from one teenager to another as they have the same forms of communication. Moreover, positive peer pressure can influence the actions as well as the thoughts of an individual. According to Gil, Luciana A., et al (45), when persons are inspired to begin thinking positively regarding the outcomes of their thoughts, then their entire attitude changes and the outlook that they have about life changes to the better. Being able to recognize oneself as a valuable individual in the society, one is in a position to comprehend that it is through peer interaction and it is through the positive peer pressure that acts as a means of validation for oneself. The incentive to look good and do well increases an individuals chances of success especially when they receive positive inspiration that comes in the form of positive peer pressure. Additionally, positive peer pressure can set a cycle of success in motion that can act as a platform for one to build upon in the future. As the person is motivated due to what they have seen their peers succeeding in, they then begin to fully comprehend the value of following well-chosen leaders. Additionally, by receiving positive feedback from the individuals that they learned from, the peer will also have a positive impact on the individual.
By being exposed to the masses, an individual is able to learn many from the world outside. Often than not, they comprehend what is happening in the outside world. The exposure to the world enables one to learn more about human behavior. It gives one the opportunity to learn from the tastes and their outlook on life from a different perspective.
In conclusion, although there are many negative effects of peer pressure, there are also positive effects that can be adopted by individuals. In fact, peer pressure should not be avoided. For many teenagers, there is a general feeling that they have to be accepted by a particular group. One should realize that it is the application peer pressure type that is vital to the development of an individual. One should recognize peer pressure as a tool for the betterment and advancement of their life.
Bingham, C. Raymond, et al. "Peer passenger norms and pressure: Experimental effects on simulated driving among teenage males." Transportation research part F: traffic psychology and behaviour 41 (2016): 124-137.
Bursztyn, Leonardo, and Robert Jensen. "How Does Peer Pressure Affect Educational Investments?." The quarterly journal of economics 130.3 (2015): 1329-1367.
Georganas, Sotiris, Mirco Tonin, and Michael Vlassopoulos. "Peer pressure and productivity: The role of observing and being observed." Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization 117 (2015): 223-232.
Gil, Luciana A., et al. "Effect of popularity and peer pressure on attitudes toward luxury among teens." Young Consumers 18.1 (2017): 84-93.
Herbst, Daniel, and Alexandre Mas. "Peer effects on worker output in the laboratory generalize to the field." Science 350.6260 (2015): 545-549.
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