By Adejoh Idoko Momoh.
I today reconnected with an old friend and I cannot recall ever being happier in recent past. Memories of him being so helpful would flood my mind and I would think to the very first time we went out to have drinks.
After taking everyone’s order of something alcoholic the bartender would get to me. He would lean in as though to listen to me whisper:
‘I’d have a coke please’
I’d say with all the confidence a very responsible 19 year old can muster. In a few seconds, my confidence would wane as I’d notice all the stares. First from the bartender, then from everyone else who sat at the table; the very distinct look of hope, the hope that I was somehow mistaken and I had not meant my order.
I’d look to my friend in the corner; his expression would be very different. Apologetic even, sort of like:
‘I’m sorry I put you in this position’
With my gaze still fixed on him, I’d say to the bartender who still stood by
‘a redbull please. I’d have a can of redbull’
7 years ago to this day, this would be my first brush with peer pressure. Okay, technically it was not peer pressure as the youngest among them was at least 10 years older.
Peer pressure as in this case can be negative and self destructive; however, it can be flipped by conscious action and can become a truly positive force. When you begin to surround yourself with positive people, their influence rubs off on you with time. I have seen this first hand; I knew I wanted to write. I sought for and joined a couple online writing classes, and I have seen my writing improve tremendously ever since. The only difference between positive and negative pressure really is simply the people you choose to surround yourself with.
Let’s make bold. Declare that we would surround ourselves with only people whose lives are examples and are capable of enriching ours positively as opposed to people who leave us worse off. Let’s shun the need to fit in, which really is the foundation of negative pressure and perhaps find that it is fashionable of some sort to stand out of the crowd.
Please share in the comments stories of how you have dealt with peer pressure or reconnected with old friends and classmates. Alternatively you can send an email message to firstname.lastname@example.org and I promise a response.