Yelling is something most parents are guilty of. Sometimes it may feel like the only way to get through to a child, like when he is in the midst of a raging temper tantrum. Or that time when she’s being uncooperative and refusing to do anything, and you’re already late and need to leave. Although the temptation to yell can be great, in most cases, you regret it afterwards. It is also damaging to children, much like spanking is. Research has linked verbal discipline such as yelling to an increase in adolescent depression.
So the next time you feel the pressure mounting, don’t make a hasty decision to scream it off. Here are five ways to deal with the situation without resorting to yelling.
Calm down: First, take a step back before you reach your breaking point. By yelling when you’re angry, you’re only teaching your child that it is an appropriate reaction to anger. Instead, when you feel the rage bubbling, take a time out. Tell your child you will talk about the situation or punishment later.
Think it through: Calm down and think it through before reacting. Try to think about why your child or children are acting this way and how you can get to the root of the problem. When you do go back and talk to your child, calmly ask them to explain their behaviour and the reasons for it. This should help you both find solutions to the problem.
Consider their feelings: Think about how you’d feel if someone was yelling at you. It’s likely you would be hurt and not take very much good out of the whole activity. Yelling can damage your children’s confidence and make them feel scared — these aren’t very constructive feelings. Instead, reasoning with them in a calm way is likely to get better results.
Don’t be a pushover: Remember that you can discipline your child kindly without letting them take advantage of you. You don’t have to be cheery when talking to your children about something they’ve done wrong. Instead, be stern and serious in your tone of voice to convey the seriousness of the issue.
Learn from mistakes: If you are in the habit of raising your voice or have bustling household that’s constantly chaotic, keeping your voice down can be quite a task. However, don’t lose hope; all habits need time to develop. Just stick to it and be positive.