As a member of the Gabby Mom's Program I've been given a free copy of Yelling: The Cause, The Casualty, The Cure by Lorrie Flem, in return for my honest review. Stay tuned and I'll tell you when and how you can get this e-book FREE!
I actually bought this e-book last year from Eternal Encouragement Magazine because I had been working on eliminating this ineffective parenting tool from my repertoire for some time. This short, concise e-book had many of the tips that I felt like God was teaching me these past 4 year as I've constantly prayed asking for help to stop yelling and to speak with kindness even when I don't feel like it. The only thing I felt this book lacked were examples from the author, Lorrie Flem's, own struggle as she worked to overcome yelling. But even that can't detract from the sound advice given!
In Yelling: The Cause, The Casualty, The Cure, Lorrie recommends identifying the triggers. It got this Mama to sit back and think about what has driven me to yell.
"Keep a watch, O Lord, before my mouth; keep the door of my lips" Proverbs 141:3
As I reflected on my triggers I came up with the acronym H-A-L-T when I feel a yell coming on because these scenarios are the ones that most often tempt me to yell!
H is for Hurried or Hungry
A is for Angry
L is for Lazy and
T is for Tired
H is for hurried. Would you believe that of all the days for me to get angry and yell was on Sunday mornings right before church. I'd get so frustrated because we were running late and I'd start imagining that I must be the only person in the house who cared whether or not we got to church on time. It was a mad scramble trying to find everyone's clothes and shoes, and get food into hungry stomachs. If we needed to pull out of the driveway at 9:30 to get to church by 10:00 I'd start yelling for everyone to go to the car at 9:30. Ten minutes later I'd be yelling at a child who still didn't have their shoes on and maybe 10 minutes after that we'd be in the car. I'd be so mad on the way to church I would ignore everyone in the car. I finally realized I couldn't pass the buck and blame this problem on the others. Am I the Mom or am I not? I got real and I got honest with myself. First, I realized that I needed to get up earlier. My whole life I've given myself 1 hour to get ready to go somewhere and insanely kept this into practice when I was trying to get myself and my whole family ready and out the door - talk about mission impossible! Now I get everyone up 2 hours early and I've also learned that it takes my family 15-20 minutes to load into the car. That's very useful information in order to set a plan that will work. Next I stopped blaming my husband for not setting or waking me with his alarm. I took full responsibility and set my own alarm (sounds obvious doesn't it?). Finally I learned that my relationship with my children and husband is more important than being on time anywhere - even church! H is also for hungry. Lorrie writes in Yelling: The Cause, The Casualty, The Cure that "mealtimes are a very important aspect of caring for a child. Mealtimes should be set and regular so as to set up good eating habits" This advice is equally important for parents. Menu planning may not sound fun but it can go a long way into keeping everyone fed and chaos at a minimum. I've been one of those mom's staring into the pantry and 6 p.m. wondering what in the world to fix for dinner. Start the day out, ahead of the game, by having a plan for feeding your family in place.
A is for Angry. Do you get angry when the house is a mess, when the kids are fighting, when you don't get your way, when their is too much noise, when kids seem to whine instead of talk rationally? Lorrie recommends speaking in a whisper. I don't know why it works but the softer I speak to my children the more they listen and obey. If I yell at my kids I don't get satisfactory results and I haven't won their hearts. God is the ultimate authority on this and He says, "A soft answer turneth away wrath, but grievous words stir up anger." (Proverbs 15:1) I"ve also tackled the whining problem in the kids thanks to another product Lorrie wrote about whining. I've told my children that a whining voice doesn't get them anything that they want cause I can't hear a voice like that. Now I daily find myself modeling to the children the voice I want them to use. For example if the 2 yr old comes up begging for milk in a pouty voice. I teach her how to ask by saying in a calm, pleasant voice, "milk please." She instantly changes her tone of voice and even uses the sign for please as she calmly says "milk please."
L is for Lazy. I've discovered that yelling is the lazy way of parenting. I remember a few years ago journaling my discouragment about the ongoing fighting between 2 of my little boys. As I prayed about this situation God helped me see that I was regarding whatever I was doing as much more important than what they were doing, so when a fight would start, instead of getting up and parenting, I'd yell across the house for them to straighten up! I was too lazy to put in the effort needed to train my children up in obedience and correct behavior. It's a lot of work being a parent! Just today, I was visiting with my sister and brother-in-law and when a skirmish erupted in the kitchen and I did not feel like getting up to handle it. I really wanted to yell from the couch and make the problem go away. God knew this temptation I would face when He said a child left to himself brings his mother to shame (Proverbs 29:15). I started to yell, but caught my self, got up and disciplined in a calm quiet voice. God, help me daily to be up to the task!
T is for Tired. Have you ever been SO tired and you just knew that a nap is exactly what you needed, especially if you've been up thru the night caring for a little one night after night, or worse, your sick and need some extra sleep? Now imagine being repeatedly awoken from your perfect slumber! Oh, how my blood would boil when this has happened to me and I would want nothing more than to give the offending culprits a sound scolding (aka yelling)! Having identified how this makes me feels, I can completely alter the course of events by discussing with the children what I need for the next hour: "Mom is going to rest in the bedroom. No one is to knock on the door unless there is an emergency. Please ask older brother or sister if you need any help or get hungry. Big kids, please check on the little ones if they start getting real loud, or start knocking on my door" Trust me when I say you need to review these instructions EVERY time you take a nap. Don't assume they'll remember.
So the next time your tempted to yell, HALT, then reach for this free e-book I'm about to tell you about, to get the encouragement you need to stop yelling....
Now that I've spilt my own beans about my struggles and triumphs overcoming yelling, let me give you the exciting news! You can get your own FREE Kindle book of Yelling: The Cause, The Casualty, The Cure by going here on July 24th! And that's not all: you're invited to a Facebook party here on July 24th from 2 p.m. to 10 p.m. EDT. Mark your calendar or set your alarm cause it's only good for 1 day!