Find ways to resist peer pressure.
There are ways to say no to peer pressure that will help you get out of the situation. The trick is to practise these when you’re alone, or with your parents or someone you trust. Then, when you need to use one of these, you will be more comfortable doing so.
Get advice from an adult. If you face peer pressure that’s hard to handle, get advice from an adult you trust. Talk to a parent, teacher, or school counselor. It can help you feel much better. Plus, they can help you prepare for the next time you face peer pressure.
Walk away. If you’re faced with peer pressure while you’re alone, there are still things you can do. You can stay away from peers who pressure you to do stuff you know is wrong. You can tell them, “Nah” and walk away. Better yet, find other friends and classmates to hang around with.
Hang with people who feel the same way you do. Choose friends who will speak up with you when you’re in need of moral support, and be quick to speak up for a friend in the same way. If you’re hearing that little voice telling you a situation’s not right, chances are others hear it, too. Just having one other person stand with you against peer pressure makes it much easier for both people to resist.
Have a friend who will stand with you. It can really help to have at least one other peer who is willing to say “No,” too. This takes a lot of the power out of peer pressure. It’s great to have friends who will back you up when you don’t want to do something.
It’s not always easy to resist negative peer pressure, but when you do, it is easy to feel good about it afterward. 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.
All in all, you can’t get rid of peer pressure; it will always be there. However, by using the tips above, you will be able to avoid it as much as possible! Make sure to also read our article about networking to strengthen your communication skills which will help build your self confidence.
Deal with peer pressure in a healthy way.
If the issue of peer influence is causing you serious concern seek the advice of adults you respect and trust. There may be the option of chatting with a counsellor during school break times. You could even try the anonymity of a respected online forum or specialist help-line. If you have any other helpful suggestions please leave a comment below for other readers of the Tuturhub blog.
Second-guess your actions if you find yourself following the crowd. Follow your gut and know when it’s not OK to just do as they are telling you to do. There may be times when peer pressure demands that you act quickly to follow the crowd. Be prepared ahead of time to know how you should react so you don’t do something you may regret.
Recognize unhealthy dynamics: It’s not OK for others to pressure, force, or trick you into doing things you don’t want to or for others to make threats if you don’t give in. It’s not OK for others to mock, belittle, shame, or criticize you for your choices. You can ask others to stop these behaviors, or you can choose to avoid spending time with people who act in these ways.
Another good idea is to speak directly to the key influencers of your peer group. Take them to one side and openly state your concerns about the potentially negative repercussions. You’ll probably find they act quite differently when away from an audience. You might also earn some respect for standing up for your beliefs. Alternatively you could avoid potentially tricky social situations and seek new friends with a shared respect for reasonable moral boundaries.
It can be difficult to stand up to peers that you consider your friends. Make it easier on yourself by practicing your responses to their questions about drugs and alcohol. Ask a parent, teacher or older sibling to role play with you so you can prepare your response ahead of time. When the situation arises, your result is more likely to be automatic.
Find healthier influences by getting involved in positive activities. Getting involved in school or community-based organizations will help you identify peers who are more positive influences and more like you. Extracurricular activities also tend to have pretty rigid schedules and guidelines that don’t give you much time to get into trouble.
It’s comforting to face those challenges with friends who are into the same things that you are. But you probably hear adults — parents, teachers, guidance counselors, etc. — talk about peer pressure more than the benefits of belonging to a peer group.
Find ways to fit in with peers.
Learn to feel good about being you. Speak out and find your voice. Don’t worry about getting a reputation for being too straight-laced or not following the crowd. You will find as you get more secure in who you are that you will find friends who share the same views and interests.
Special interest clubs and sports teams are great avenues for expanding your group of friends. Nearly any hobby you have likely has an established group dedicated to the shared enjoyment of that interest. Sometimes, the best way to resist peer pressure is to find a new set of peers.
Peers can influence each other in good ways. Maybe a kid in your science class taught you an easy way to remember the planets in the solar system. Maybe you admire a friend who is a good sport, and you try to be more like them. Maybe you got others excited about your new favorite book and now everyone’s reading it.
It’s a good idea to have a broad group of friends. That way, you don’t have to depend on any one particular person to get your social needs met. Also, really spend time choosing those friends, because if your friends don’t share your values or interests, they’re probably going to be interested in doing things you aren’t comfortable with.
Positive examples. Peers set plenty of good examples for each other. Having peers who are committed to doing well in school or to doing their best in a sport can influence you to be more goal-oriented, too. Peers who are kind and loyal influence you to build these qualities in yourself. Even peers you’ve never met can be role models! For example, watching someone your age compete in the Olympics, give a piano concert, or spearhead a community project might inspire you to go after a dream of your own.
Socializing. Your peer group gives you opportunities to try out new social skills. Getting to know lots of different people — such as classmates or teammates — gives you a chance to learn how to expand your circle of friends, build relationships, and work out differences. You may have peers you agree or disagree with, compete with, or team with, peers you admire, and peers you don’t want to be like.
Besides close friends, your peers include other kids you know who are the same age — like people in your grade, church, sports team, or community. These peers also influence you by the way they dress and act, things they’re involved in, and the attitudes they show.