Do you always hear phrases like “Come on, just do it!” or “Don’t you want to fit in?”
You want to fit in, to be part of the group. That’s cool. After all, humans are designed to belong and connect with each other. But sometimes, people end up doing something they know they shouldn’t do just to fit in.
You’re not alone. Peer pressure is something that can happen to anyone. It happens to kids, even adults, especially to young adults like you.
While it is true that people are called to love their neighbors and know how to relate with them, does this mean that we should do anything just to get along with everybody?
Here are some questions to ask yourself to help you deal with negative peer pressure:
Question 1: “What will be the outcome?”
Right now, you are open to so many options, so many things, and your decisions could lead you anywhere.
If your friends are pressuring you into doing something you won’t normally do, ask yourself: “What is going to happen if I do this? Am I ready to accept the consequences?” Count the cost, consider the risks of giving in to the pressure. They can have serious consequences not just to you, but to other people as well.
Exodus 23:2 reminds people to not follow the crowd in doing wrong.
If someone is making you do something you’re uncomfortable with, it’s okay to say no.
It’s true that taking a stand for what is right might make people unhappy with you, but that’s ok. What’s important is you do what God wants you to do.
Question 2: “Am I surrounded with the right people?”
The people around you help form your character. As the old saying goes, “Tell me who your friends are, and I’ll tell you who you are.”
So, if your peers are pressuring you into doing something you don’t want to do, or something that could hurt you, perhaps it’s time to ask yourself if you are with the right people.
Ask, “Am I with the right people that will help me get to where I want to be in this life, or this relationship would only lead me to destruction?”
Likewise, the Bible was clear that even the most well-intentioned individuals can be led astray by those with bad character.
“Do not be deceived: “Bad company corrupts good morals.” (1 Corinthians 15:33 NASB)
That’s why it’s important that you surround yourself with positive influences – people who genuinely want the best for you and will help shape your behaviors according to what is good and pleasing to God.
Question 3: “Who am I trying to please?”
Contrary to popular belief, vulnerable people are not the only ones who can be pressured to do what the world wants over what God wants. Even those who have a healthy relationship with their families could fall to bad influences.
Why? People often fall into negative peer pressure because they think they could find happiness in social acceptance. But that kind of happiness is short-lived.
Gaining the approval of a corrupted world means giving up the true happiness that comes from God’s approval.
“Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings, or of God? Or am I trying to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ.” (Galatians 1:10 NIV)
It’s never been easy living in a world full of pressure.
But don’t worry!
God will be with you. He is the best friend and companion because He will never pressure you in doing anything that is bad for you.
May you have the courage to stand your ground. Pray, and trust that God will always empower you to resist any temptation, any peer pressure.
“Put into practice what you learned and received from me, both from my words and from my actions. And the God who gives us peace will be with you.” (Philippians 4:9 GNT)
Are you suffering from peer pressure?