Peer Pressure Examples: Positive and Negative

Updated October 6, 2022
definition and three examples of "peer pressure" from the article
    peer pressure definition and examples
    Created by Karina Goto for YourDictionary
    Owned by YourDictionary, Copyright YourDictionary 

Peer pressure is influence on your behavior from a group that you interact with socially or professionally. It can be good or bad depending on what action is taken, what consequences it brings and whether or not you want to do it.

Positive Peer Pressure

  • Being encouraged to join the Debate Team can improve your self-confidence and your listening and thinking skills
  • Going to college can be positive for your future
  • Following the rules can keep you out of trouble and focus on what is important
  • Showing up at school on time helps you learn discipline
  • Respecting others will help you go far and will lead to people treating you well.
  • Being honest helps people trust you
  • Exercising is good for stress and fitness
  • Avoiding drugs can keep you out of jail
  • Working hard leads to achievement
  • Listening to rap music
  • Volunteering at the Boys or Girls Club lets you share your knowledge and skills
  • Tutoring other students shares your knowledge

Negative Peer Pressure

  • Drinking alcohol while you are underage can lead to jail and is dangerous when you are young
  • Smoking is very addictive and can result in lung cancer
  • Experimenting with drugs can be deadly
  • Being encouraged to fight someone can lead to an assault charge
  • Stealing something on a dare can lead to imprisonment or a fine or both
  • Having sexual relations before you are ready or before you want to can lead to pregnancy and STDs
  • Bullying or teasing others
  • Putting your health at risk with too much bodybuilding or dieting
  • Skipping school
  • Wearing clothes you don't like because it is expected
  • Doing anything you don't want to do
  • Driving fast or drag racing

Peer Pressure for Adults

Adults also have peer pressure that usually comes from a group of people that share interests or professions.

Here are examples of peer pressure for adults:

  • Having a maid because others in your peer group have one
  • Going to certain clubs where members of your peer group go
  • Buying a BMW you can't afford because other in your peer group have luxury cars
  • Not drinking alcohol at a party
  • Waxing parts of your body
  • Going to Happy Hour with coworkers
  • Sending your kids to a certain school
  • Buying an SUV instead of a hybrid
  • Being a member of a certain political party
  • Contributing to certain charities
  • Working out at the gym
  • Only shop at certain stores
  • For women, being ultra-thin
  • Get a job with a well-known company
  • Wearing only designer clothes
  • Having an in-ground swimming pool in the back yard

    Peer Pressure in Movies
    • Where the Heart Is - This is a movie about a teenager that gets pregnant and is abandoned by her boyfriend.
    • The Sandlot - A boy moves to a new neighborhood and soon joins a group of kids that play baseball and have other adventures together.
    • Grease - Sandy is pressured into changing to be more to be with the boy she loves.
    • Thirteen - In this movie a 13 year old girl tries crime, drugs and sex due to peer pressure.
    • High School Musical - A popular boy and a shy, intelligent girl audition for roles in the school musical. This concerns their peers and upsets the social order of the school.

    These various examples of peer pressure show how behavior can be changed in many ways based on those around us.