Spotlight 3: Option 1: Peer Pressure

Peer pressure is the direct influence on people by peers. The person experiencing peer pressure may be strongly encouraged to do certain thins or to act a certain way in order to “fit in” or “be cool.” For example: when at a party, I may choose not to drink. If all my friends are drinking they might keep asking me to drink with them or continuously try and hand me a drink. This could lead me to conformity, which is adjusting my behavior to coincide with group standards. Here, I reviewed 3 websites providing advice on how to resist it.

The first website I chose to look at is aimed towards college students. It is an article published by Stanford University’s college success blog. It offers 5 tips: choose your friends wisely, don’t depend on one friend group, seek advice from others, engage in confidence-boosting activities, and lastly, accept occasional loneliness. When first coming to college, nobody knows each other so the first priority for most people is to socialize. I know that when I first got here, I wasn’t evaluating each person in my head as to whether or not they were good friends because I didn’t know them well enough yet. This goes along with not relying on one friend group. I am friends with about 3 friend groups on campus. They each engage in different activities, some party and some don’t, but the perk to this is that I can still be friends with everyone and not be “tied” to just one set of people. I like the idea of getting involved in confidence-boosting activities. I think this would be a successful tip because the more comfortable and confident someone is with themselves, the more confident they will feel turning down a situation or offer they do not want.  I do not think accepting occasional loneliness will be a more successful tip because in an environment full of peers and things to do, who wants to be alone? I think a lot of people would rather spend time with others than be alone.

The second website I chose to look at is aimed towards college athletes. It was published on university survival. It tells a story about a student who was pressured into drinking by his teammates, and he was the only who got caught. He lost his entire football career and never earned a degree. While this story may be a worst case scenario, team peer pressure is still very real. This website offers 4 tips: Earn respect from your teammates through hard work, allow your personal values to guide you, make friends outside of the team too, and join other groups on campus. I think these are all effective tips. By staying true to yourself and having more friends off the team, it allows for you to feel more confident in decision making.

The last website I looked at took a different approach. it is advice offered to managers whos employees are experiencing peer pressure. The number one point the article makes is for the manager to assert him/her self and recognize the pressure their employees are placing on each other. It offers for managers to host a meeting with the pressured employees and assure them that they can reach out without fear of repercussions, and encourage them to say no if they disagree with their group. It states that a manager should strive to create a positive and equal environment. I agree that these are great ways to improve the relationships in an office or organization.

Resources:

https://collegepuzzle.stanford.edu/5-tips-to-deal-with-peer-pressure-in-college/

https://www.universitysurvival.com/student-topics/avoiding-pressure-from-teammates/

https://www.mtdtraining.com/blog/handle-peer-pressure-office.htm

 

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