Peer pressure. It’s always there whether you’re in grade school, junior high, high school or as an ADULT. I have felt peer pressure stronger as an adult than I ever did while I was in school.
I think Moms are particularly susceptible to pressure as we raise our children and create our family’s traditions. We look at other mothers and see what they’re doing and think we should be doing that too. We need to have our kids enrolled on the swim team or in swimming lessons. Of course we have to join the library’s summer reading program and our children need enrichment during the summer so we should enroll them in an arts camp like so and so did. Everyone we know is planning a fun and exciting family vacation and though money is tight, we need to go somewhere too. How can we deprive our children of all these enriching experiences?
During the school year we experience peer pressure as to which school is best suited for our children’s needs. Is it the charter school that ______ is sending her children to, or the preschool that everyone in the neighborhood thinks is fantastic. We’ve got to sign up for T ball and soccer and gymnastics and piano lessons. And I’ve heard that ____ is taking singing lessons, so I better look into that too.
Yikes! I’ve got a stomach ache just thinking of all these things!
Then if you start looking at the HUNDREDS of craft blogs and educational blogs and homeschooling and refashioning blogs on the internet you can go crazy! You can spend so much time reading about what others are doing and trying to copy ALL of them, that you spend precious energy and time on THINGS instead of people—the people in your home.
Why do I know this? Because I have fallen into the “Keeping up with the Jones” peer pressure trap so often in my life. It’s very easy to do. But when you find yourself hyperventilating or being critical of your husband, children and home, when you spend more time on the computer than reading to your children, and when you are grouchy, irritable and ungrateful, then it’s time to take stock of your situation. It’s time to stop and be still. It’s time to write down your blessings. It’s time to start saying prayers of gratitude for what you do have.
Throw away fashion and home decorating magazines. Limit the time you read other people’s blogs. Limit facebook to 15 minutes. And instead read your scriptures. Relax and enjoy your children. Read a good book. Make cookies. Ahhh….. I’m feeling happier already!