6 Ways to Deal with Peer Pressure in College

Maybe you got others excited about your new favorite book and now everyone’s reading it. 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. Sticking to the rules in any school can be hard, particularly if you don’t really understand why they’re there in the first place.

Sober Living

For example, drinking is something that I have no interest in, so even if someone was to try and encourage me, I wouldn’t feel tempted because I have never wanted to drink alcohol. Whereas someone who doesn’t drink because their parents told them not to may find it harder to resist the urge, because it’s not the way they feel themselves. Just remember, almost all students find things difficult at secondary school. It might be struggles with assignments, tests, managing your time, navigating friendships, or bullying. Having ups and downs is completely normal, and you should always ask for help from a trusted adult when you need it.

Reevaluating Your Friendships

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. Young people may be more susceptible to https://ecosoberhouse.com/article/dealing-with-peer-pressure/ peer pressure because their identities are still forming; they desire to fit in and not be bullied and have less risk aversion than adults. Implicit peer pressure is the subtle type that pulls you into conforming to a social group to increase your chances of acceptance.

  • People of all ages are susceptible to peer pressure, and research shows that adults may shift their drinking habits based on peer pressure.
  • A person may be especially vulnerable to peer pressure if they say that peer acceptance is important to them, or if they are sensitive to rejection.
  • Peer pressure is a force that nearly everyone has faced at some point.

Experiencing peer pressure, especially when in a hostile environment, can cause a person to panic. To mitigate the risk of impulsive decision making when under pressure, it’s best to have a plan that can help map out a response. Think of different scenarios that spark discomfort and think about how to deal with peer pressure. It’s ok to give excuses to avoid making decisions that you may feel are not right for you. Positive peer pressure can make a person do things that are ultimately very good for them.

Tips for overcoming challenges at secondary school

Provide support to your kids and ask questions about how they’re feeling with the group they interact with regularly. Of course, you want to make new friends, and that may make you go along with things you wouldn’t otherwise. But remember that all the new students are trying to make friends. There are lots of people looking for connections, and some of them will be good fits for you. Don’t necessarily go with the first people you meet, especially if they seem pushy or want to do things that don’t seem right to you. Look for people with whom you share interests, like exercise, music, or student leadership-anything where you have more in common than drinking.

  • There are lots of people looking for connections, and some of them will be good fits for you.
  • If you feel pressured by people to do things you’re uncomfortable doing, there are lots of ways to respond.
  • However, the brain’s limbic system is now more capable of factoring in reasoning such as possible consequences, safety, and general well-being.
  • For example, according to the Teen Driver Source, 19 percent of teens said they would stop using a cell phone while driving if their friends did the same.
  • It can sometimes manifest as indirect pressure, such as when a person perceives that many or even all of their peers use drugs.

To be honest, peer pressure is not something we can simply escape from. In reality, it is something we learn to manage rather than avoid. If you can learn just a few small but effective ways to handle peer pressure then you will be in a much better place to deal with those tricky situations that life might throw at you. When I was at school, I struggled to shake the overwhelming feeling that I was somehow lagging behind everyone else. I liked my friends and I enjoyed socialising, but I often felt like I was still missing out.

Talk to a Trusted Adult if They Feel Pressured

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. 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.

We can do this through role modeling confidence and praising their wise choices. By doing so, their inner strength will help them stand firm with their feelings. A belief in themselves will help them do what they feel is right.

Part of the school journey is learning to deal with challenges in positive ways and, as always, Bitesize is here to support you every step of the way. Adults who think that they might have an addiction should talk with a doctor. Children who need help should approach a parent, caregiver, teacher, or school counselor.

  • A 2018 study explored the role of sex differences in peer pressure to smoke.
  • Resisting peer pressure can involve avoiding it, saying no, and surrounding yourself with more positive influences.
  • It occurs when an individual feels as though they need to do the same things as people their own age or in their social group to be liked or accepted.
  • Honesty goes a long way in reducing the harmful effects of peer pressure.
About the Author

About the Author

Jessica Samson, MBA, CHRP, C. Mgr.

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