A large number of people are not alien to these terms and therefore already have an idea of what peer pressure and cyber bulling means.
My problem therefore is not with us knowing what this term means but rather to actually know when this is happening to you.
It may come as a shocker but many of us don’t even know when we are being pressured into doing something or being cyber bullied.
Why is this?
Because in this modern times, people have found such subtle ways to do this and might not even know they are doing it. The victims might not even know they are actually being victimized.
For the purpose of this, I’ll share a story of mine related to this and how I dealt with it, God helping me.
When I first started blogging on Instagram, I did not know there were actually many other Nigerians doing this because up until then, it was only foreign bloggers I knew.
Later, I got to know there are so many Nigerian bloggers too. I got so inspired to continue and further my blog because of them, since the “if they could do it, I can do it too and even better” attitude is a huge vibe.
I gathered the courage to actually follow most of them, start to engage on their post and hoping in return they would follow me back and engage with me too because of the “Aspa we are all Nigerians so we should relate with ourselves” vibe.
Unfortunately for me, this didn’t turn out the way I expected. They neither followed me back nor engaged with me and I noticed they were engaging with each other very actively.
How did this make me feel?
Honestly, I felt so bad. I wanted to quit. At a point, I felt like I was being left out of something so big and it reminded me of American high school movies. It was at that point it clicked.
I said to myself “Girl you are being cyber bullied” It might not have seemed like that at that point in time. At that point, it was still in its fetus stage, it may have grown into something worse like me getting depressed and felling rejected. So I aborted it right at that point.
What did I then do?
Yes, I did unfollow them and also realized the problem might not be from them but even me. I had to upgrade. No, I do not mean an upgrade in social class, getting new shoes, clothes, luxury items, buying followers, getting in a relationship. That is where peer pressure comes in.
If I had done that, I would have become a full victim of peer pressure. Some of us may be doing this and not even know this.
I rather started upgrading my skill. Usually I tell people “social media is whatever you make of it”. Social media is a workspace for me just like it is for a lot of people.
When they saw this skill upgrade, I started getting positive feedback. Some followed me and engaged with me, I even got dms.
I’m not saying follows, likes or all these matters so much. What I’m saying therefore is you don’t have to conform to the standards of others to feel accepted.
Just do you!
Right now, I’m digging into the vibe of “doing me” and I would say it is bomb. I don’t have to be pressured about doing anything I would not want to do and you CANNOT BULLY ME. Lol.
I hope we all learn from this little story of mine. Please if you identify with any of these symptoms of bullying or peer pressure, crush and abort it before it gets bad and you get lost in the dead depressing hole of “Faking it, rejection and depression”
This doesn’t mean only on social media. It also happens in real life situations even more. Forced friendships, doing what you normally would not do, feeling ‘left out’.
Had any similar experiences? Gained from this post? I would love to see your comments on this.
Till next Thursday.