Before the social media (about 15 years ago), I saw peer pressure as a good thing. The only source of peer pressure came from my friends - who were mostly like me. I’d be studying harder after a phone call before the exams to my friend due to peer pressure. Sometimes, I might even be encouraged to take a break and play a game of Cricket before the exams - with no guilt. However, growing up and the social media has changed the dynamics of peer pressure a lot!
- A lot of people are buying houses, is it the right time for me to buy one?
- I see photos on Instagram and Facebook about people traveling the world - should I be traveling more?
- My connections on LinkedIn have moved jobs or have got promoted - maybe I should work harder?
And the comparisons are endless. After some thinking and talking to wise friends, a few thoughts -
- Just because the people around you are doing something, it cannot be the only reason for you to follow them. It might work for them but for various reasons it might not work for you.
- The world tour vacation might not be as life changing as you had imagined and getting more money wouldn’t solve any your problems as you had thought.
- The 4 step decision process from the book Decisive seem to work well for most situations. (This Infographic is a good summary of the book.)
- Widening your options.
- Reality test the assumptions.
- Attain distance before deciding.
- Prepare to be wrong.
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