Can peer pressure be positive? Why or why not?
Peer pressure, two words which can have such negative connotations but can it ever be good? Is there such a thing as positive peer pressure? After doing a quick search on the internet, I’d have to say, yes.
We all know about the negative peer pressure, the pressure to steal, take drugs, smoke, not do your homework… the list goes on. But what about the positive outcomes from peer pressure? What happens when someone is pressured to do something good? What if someone decides to raise some money for a charity and persuades a friend to help them. They really enjoy helping out so they arrange another fundraising event and ask some more friends to join them. Then someone outside of their group asks if they can join in and another and pretty soon most of their class is organising a sponsored silence or a sponsored walk or a cake sale.
Our peers can also help us to adopt good, or bad, habits. They can also help us to break the bad habits while adopting good ones. There is a reason why most people trying to lose weight are often more successful if they join a weight loss group, the support of like-minded people help them to stay on their weight loss journey even when others may want to, inadvertently, trip them up. They also learn who in their circle of friends and acquaintances are likely to help or hinder them on their quest to a healthier lifestyle. Many will surround themselves with people who eat a healthy diet because they don’t want to be caught eating high calorie foods.
Peer pressure can also take you out of your comfort zone and encourage you to try new things. When we went to Orlando for my 40th birthday, I said that I was going to go on every ride, except one – the Tower of Terror, I’d already been on it and really didn’t like it. Now, I like roller coasters and I’m not scared of heights but I was with my husband, son and step-daughter and I wasn’t sure if any of them would want to go on all of them with me. There were also a couple of rides that I really wasn’t sure about, Kraken and Manta at Sea World anyone? I also knew that I wanted to try Summit Plummet at Blizzard Beach but wasn’t sure about the near vertical drop. As it happened, my son, step-daughter and I went on all of the rides and I’m glad I did. There are some that I won’t do again, Summit Plummet – I got a sore bum! – and maybe the Hollywood Rip Ride Rocket at Universal Studios – I didn’t like the bar which held us in, the music was great though.