If you feel like you are yelling too much or too often then I hope that this post will be helpful.
Maybe you feel like you are yelling at your stepkids or your kids.
Maybe you feel like you are yelling at your partner.
No yelling allowed.
Believe it or not, there was a time at the beginning of my marriage when I would proudly declare that I didn’t fight with my husband.
It was accurate.
My husband and I didn’t fight or argue much and I didn’t yell at all.
The reason was that I had an absolute personal policy about fighting and yelling which was that I don’t yell and I don’t fight.
I wore that achievement like a badge of honor. I thought that the sign of a good relationship was one where I would never yell.
In time, I learned that what I was doing wasn’t a good thing for me or my family.
I was simply avoiding all conflict. In order to do that I just didn’t participate in any conflict or in anything that looked like it might lead to conflict. I did this at the expense of my own mental and physical health. I simply never yelled. In order to do that I just either did what other people wanted or I opted out.
It’s not that I didn’t get upset. I did. I felt the pain and I absorbed it but I simply didn’t yell or let it out. I told myself that I had other outlets.
In relationships and families it’s really hard to do that for a long time. It’s perhaps not impossible but in my experience it’s hard.
In my case this came to a dramatic climax where it was unsustainable and I began to really show signs of stress and struggle. That’s a story for another day.
The lesson is that I had to learn new methods to adapt. This including tools for dealing with stress, more structure and support in what was needed to manage my home and my family and communication tools and strategies.
How much yelling is okay?
I believe that some level of conflict is normal and natural in families.
The level that is acceptable is going to probably be different in each family.
In fact, I think there are times when yelling is good and helpful.
For example, If I am standing under a tree and a coconut is about to fall on my head I will be thankful if you yell to alert me.
Or if we are standing in a noisy space and I’m about to do something unnecessary and you raise your voice to alert me I will most likely be happy about that.
The actual action of yelling is not always by itself always the problem.
I actually still don’t yell very much. If I do start yelling usually one of two things is going on. Either something is very wrong like there is a fire or a car is about to hit us or I’ve just been pushed past my limit and I’ve lost a little bit of control of my behavior.
The reason I bring this up is that I’d like to offer for you to consider that perhaps the solution isn’t quite that you need to actually stop yelling.
Maybe just maybe the action of yelling could be a symptom of something else. Perhaps other things going on in your life that needs attention.
Not always – if you are reading this and thinking that this doesn’t match what’s happening in your life. That’s good – this isn’t for you. Sometimes however the yelling is a clue that something else is not working.
If it’s just yelling – here’s the thing – it is possible to just decide to stop yelling.
Questions for you:
You can ask yourself if that would actually solve any problems.
What would change if you didn’t yell?
Would it be different if you spoke softly or didn’t speak at all?
Is the problem that you are yelling or the events that are happening that lead up to the yelling?
Another way to phrase that is would you feel better if you simply didn’t yell or is what needs to happen really that you wish things were different and you didn’t feel like yelling was the best option.
If you and I were together in a room or on a phone call this is the part of the conversation where sometimes people start to leak some tears from their eyes. Sometimes looking at the part of our life that is in enough disarray to bring us to yelling doesn’t feel super great.
This article maybe isn’t what you expected it might be.
You may have been expecting actionable tips that you can apply right now. I have not actually told you a process to stop yelling.
In fact, when I see people create checklists and worksheets of tips and instructions for what to do to help adults to stop yelling because truthfully sometimes I think it’s actually more helpful to first examine what’s going on and look at why you are yelling.
If you want some help with that this is something that I can happily chat with you about how working with me as a life coach can be helpful.