On what terms are you living on? In life, people live on either their own terms or are heavily influenced by others. The later are those who are influenced by peer pressure. Their fear of rejection makes them trying to fit in the shoes of others. They end up doing things that are harmful to their wellbeing. This leaves them leading a miserable life.
Peer pressure usually takes advantage of deficiency in confidence. A tree stands on its root and not on its size. Confidence is the root that holds firm our belief and opinion. It protect us from manipulation. Lack of confidence makes us vulnerable to peer pressure. This is because our anchor has been compromised. They say a man who stands for nothing will fall for anything. We are easily manipulate to please others. We start acting and behaving like them.
We are social animals and the need for love and acceptance is in our DNA. This is a weakness exploited by fear of rejection. We have a habit of being in a company that agrees with us. It’s a great feeling when everyone agrees with us. We feel special. Truth hurts and sometimes speaking the truth might burn some bridges. Being criticize can hurt and we hate it. Instead of speaking the truth we remain mum just to avoid the pain.
Peer pressure affects our potential. The fear of rejection keeps us within the boundaries set by our peer group. We spent a lot of time and effort to fit in. We cannot try out something new or different because no one is doing it. Innovation and creativity may be limited. This is because there is no room for fresh ideas within the group. We are pleased with the status quo. This limits our personal growth. We cannot realise our potential since we are dormant. To fully realize our potential we need to see value in ourselves. That way other people will also see value in us. This is the principle used in trade. The value a trader gives to a commodity is what the customer will see.
Living other peoples’ lives makes us miserable. If we decide to live just to please people we will be stuck in an endless cycle of do, undo and redo. Different people have different needs and wants. Trying to meet all of them is next to impossible. There will also be a conflict of interest between our needs and theirs.
To overcome fear of rejection and peer pressure we need to start valuing ourselves. A standing tree has more value than the fallen one. We have to be careful not to overvalue other peoples’ opinions. To find fulfillment we need to stop trying to fit in other peoples’ shoes and wear ours.
photo credit: jpellgen <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/27917561@N00/31514004601″>Onitsuka Tiger</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/”>(license)</a>