"There should be no yelling in the home unless, there is a fire."
-David O. Mckay
I remember when I was newly pregnant holding a book in a discount store and thinking to myself "I'm going to be that parent."
You know, the one that doesn't YELL.
The book was called, "Scream Free Parenting."
I read the book from top to bottom and was excited to take on the challenge.
Then I had Jack, and as he slowly got older, I slowly began to yell.
I remember someone telling me, "sometimes you just need to yell."
At the time I brushed her off.
Years later I agreed.
And now I'm pretty solid in the idea that you don't need to yell.
"Words that soak into your ears are whispered -not yelled." -unknown
Even now, I'm picturing a teacher in grade school who would make a hand signal above her head when she wanted us to be quiet. Slowly the room would become quiet as each kid caught on, while I was usually the last one talking... and then I'd notice. No yelling involved. A room full of 15-20 kids quieted without yelling, pretty profound huh? Did it take patience? Oh I'm sure, but after accomplishing her goal I bet it felt so good on the inside.
I remember when I put the book in our garage sale and another mom bought it.
I thought to myself, "good luck" and was happy to see it go.
I'm going through another season in my life. A season where my children yell, and I wish they didn't. A season where I sometimes yell at Joel and I don't like it. A season where I sometimes yell over cries and arguing when it would be better if I just stepped into the middle and took control with my presence and soft voice.
Don't get me wrong I'm not a compulsive yeller. I actually think our house is pretty peaceful, but when my boys fight, when I'm frustrated and I'm tired, I raise my voice, and I don't like that part of me.
I want to be better.
I want to have a more peaceful home, one where my presence is felt, not heard.
It didn't hurt that I read this today when googling "how to stop yelling."
"Raise your words, not your voice. It is rain that grows flowers, not thunder." -Rumi
I think it's a realistic goal, and a good one to strive for.
No yelling for a year.
I'll post a few follow ups along the way.