Peer pressure is real. Like a disease it infects the mind and moves into the heart tearing the definition of your original being apart. It has no remorse, like a deadly lion on the hunt for prey it marks its weak target carefully and attacks with deadly precision. By definition, peer pressure is the strong influence exerted by those who you associate with. Peer pressure starts when kids start growing older and have a sense of the world, and an opinion to go with it.
Some of us are smart enough to art off trouble when it comes to the wrong kind of pressure, while others sadly get sucked into pressure circles (as I’d like to call them), often because they have weaknesses in their characters that cannot oppose it. Peer pressure is not a problem experienced by children alone but by people of all ages. We are all susceptible to it, even our parent’s a lot of the times. The effects of peer pressure are vast. Many people start on bad habits because of it.
Peer pressure statistics indicate that students indulge in their first experiences with sex, drugs and alcohol because of it. It also has the effect of lowering the self-esteem of its victims hence ruining mental, physical and spiritual growth. Physical growth is slowed down because of the habits formed; drinking, smoking and unsanctioned sex lead to the weakening of the body by exposing it to intoxicating substances and disease. Mental growth is hindered as all the affected person can think of is pleasing his peers even to the expense of intellectual development.
On the spiritual platform, biblical moral standards are abandoned because they seem outdated and ‘not cool’ as the majority skies to see it. Speaking on those affected, a Christian poet named Janet McGee says: “Bad peer pressure is what occurs when morality is based on however is on the top of your music plastic and the media becomes your bible. You then begin to search scripture upon scripture of magazines only to find out that you are playing dancing lead in Satin’s recital. ” In this quote it is easy to see where peer pressure comes from.
Not only does it originate from our peers at school or family at home but it also comes from the media that we are so addicted to. Movies, music and advertisements paint a picture of what the ideal person should be like. These sources dictate the way we dress, what we consume and even who we are. Every human being is created in a unique way. Like a fingerprint we all are destined to walk in the confidence of ultimate artistic design. Compromise is the soil that negative peer pressure takes root in. It is compromise that provides the essential nutrients that give peer pressure its famed strength.
Peer pressure is not all negative; as you’ve noticed all this time I have been localization. Positive pressure also exists, even though it is not as prevalent it is there never-the-less. In a school setup positive peer pressure is seen when friends encourage each other to read and take an exam or when athletes at a school sports event encourage exercise and healthy living to their team mates. At home it can be identified in our parent’s advice when they push us to be the best we can be and instruct us to have no part in a corrupt societies business.
If you read the Bible, in the book of Titus, in the second chapter and on the urethane verse, we are told that we are a peculiar people. Somewhere else in the Bible, in the book of Psalms we are also told that we are fearfully and wonderfully made. With negative peer pressure a person if led to believe that they are less than they are and that they have to follow the worldly standard of dressing, eating, drinking and speaking. Peer pressure dictates to you how to live. Positive peer pressure helps you be who you are meant to be by pushing you in the right direction.
Peer pressure can be realized as the two voices in your head. One is the bad one influencing you to do what is clearly wrong and the other leading you to what is right. Even though peer pressure starts with an outside influence such as a friend, a family member or the media everything else takes place in your mind. It is up to you to choose which voice to believe and listen to. People may be able to corner you and steal your privacy but they can never steal your choice. I choose the voice that tells me that I am special and that I do not need to follow the crowd in order to feel accepted.