Over the last several years, I’ve started honoring lent — the 40 days between Fat Tuesday and Easter. Everyone I know that participates in Lent seems to celebrate it a different way. For me, I give up certain bad habits, try to create positive ones and spend a focused effort on my faith in God.
Along with giving up Starbucks and sweet tea, I’ve also given up yelling.
Yelling is an issue. It just sounds so silly when I read that sentence out loud. I’m a yeller. The crap hits the fan — I yell and I hate it more than anything. I feel guilty, it rarely resolves anything and just creates more tears. My end goal is for me not to resort to yelling. When I saw Lent was right around the corner, I just happened to have a very bad day and knew this was something I needed to focus on not doing.
According to a post on Today.com, Amy McCready, founder of Positive Parenting Solutions said, “Yelling is the new spanking. It’s sort of the go-to strategy for parents… I think (this) definitely is a generation of yellers.”
Generation of yellers… We don’t typically spank — but we yell. Why? We want our kids to hear us, pay attention and to respect our authority (imagine that in Cartman’s voice, please.)
So what if we stop yelling?
While I am only on day five — I’ve managed to change out yelling with clapping really loudly. I am kidding, kind of. Actually I recently read an article by Donald Miller about making decisions, and it’s a simple idea but it stuck with me. Don talks about thinking, will this matter in a year, before making a decision. Will the fact that my kid has cut his brother’s hair matter in a year? Nah. Will the wall that was graffitied on matter in a year? Nope.
I need to remind myself that kids are kids. This is what I signed up for. They don’t know better most of the time that they do bad things, and I really need to take a calmer approach when addressing their behavior. Wish me luck.
But there are certain times when yelling is an absolute necessity, such as in the event of danger. If your kid is in the middle of the street — by all means, PLEASE yell.