What Is Risky Behaviour In Life Orientation

Risky Behaviour in Life Orientation

Risky behavior is any action or behavior that increases the likelihood of harm or injury to oneself or others. In Life Orientation classes in South Africa, students are taught about the importance of making responsible choices and avoiding risky behaviors. This subject covers a wide range of topics, including self-awareness, decision-making, relationships, sexuality, and substance abuse.

Types of Risky Behaviors

There are several types of risky behaviors that students may encounter in their daily lives. These include:

  • Drug and alcohol abuse: Using drugs or alcohol can impair judgment and lead to risky decisions.
  • Reckless driving: Speeding, driving under the influence, and not wearing a seatbelt are all examples of risky driving behaviors.
  • Unsafe sex: Engaging in unprotected sex can lead to unintended pregnancies and sexually transmitted infections.
  • Violent behavior: Fighting or bullying others can result in physical harm or legal consequences.
  • Extreme sports: Participating in activities like skydiving or bungee jumping without proper training or safety equipment can be dangerous.

Reasons for Risky Behavior

There are several factors that may contribute to risky behavior in young people. These include:

  • Peer pressure: Wanting to fit in with a certain group of friends may lead students to engage in risky behaviors.
  • Low self-esteem: Students with low self-confidence may turn to risky behaviors as a way to cope with their feelings of inadequacy.
  • Curiosity: Some students may engage in risky behaviors out of curiosity or a desire for new experiences.
  • Family influences: Growing up in a household where risky behaviors are normalized can make it more likely for students to engage in similar behaviors.
What Is Risky Behaviour In Life Orientation

Consequences of Risky Behavior

There are serious consequences associated with risky behavior, both in the short term and the long term. These may include:

  • Physical injury: Engaging in risky activities can result in serious injuries or even death.
  • Legal trouble: Breaking the law can lead to fines, jail time, and a criminal record.
  • Health issues: Substance abuse and unsafe sexual practices can lead to long-term health problems.
  • Damage to relationships: Risky behaviors can strain relationships with friends, family, and romantic partners.

Preventing Risky Behavior

As part of their Life Orientation curriculum, students are taught strategies for avoiding risky behavior and making responsible choices. Some ways to prevent risky behavior include:

  • Setting boundaries: Clearly defining personal boundaries and sticking to them can help students avoid situations that may lead to risky behavior.
  • Seeking support: Talking to a trusted adult or counselor can help students navigate peer pressure and difficult situations.
  • Developing coping skills: Learning healthy ways to cope with stress and negative emotions can reduce the likelihood of turning to risky behaviors for relief.
  • Educating themselves: Understanding the risks and consequences of various behaviors can empower students to make informed decisions.


Life Orientation classes play a crucial role in educating students about the dangers of risky behavior and equipping them with the tools they need to make responsible choices. By understanding the reasons for risky behavior, recognizing the potential consequences, and learning how to prevent it, students can lead healthier and more fulfilling lives.