YOU DON’T HAVE TO YELL
By Becky Mansfield
So, if I can open up completely, I’ll tell you that when I yell, it is ALWAYS because something ELSE is stressing me out.
Example: I remember when I was throwing Allie’s birthday party. It was for only a handful of kids, but all of her friends’ parents were coming over. I had been so busy doing fun things for her party that I didn’t really clean up that day. I try to keep our house clean, so when it looks messy, it drives me crazy!
So… two hours before the party, my four children were running around, playing, but leaving little trails of mess behind them. Finally, I just yelled, “Will you guys please stop and help me?!”
I can tell you that the look on their faces said it all. I was hit with guilt and felt ashamed. One thing that I strive for is a good relationship with my family. I truly think that when kids respect you, they do what you ask.
I have never had an issue with having to repeat myself too much or having our kids refuse to do things. They don’t talk back or argue (well, once in a while they do). I attribute it to the fact that I treat them with respect and they do the same.
I would never yell at a friend, so why did I think that it was OK to yell at my family, the people that I love the most? Honestly, I rarely raise my voice. I’ve just never been a yeller, but this day was different and I felt awful because of it. I don’t want to yell at our kids. Our children look at us with such love and admiration – they listen to every word that we say and they take it to heart. Knowing that I’d let them down just felt… awful.
I had to try to figure out why I was yelling in the first place. I realized that I can control my temper by controlling the other things around me.
When our house is clean and organized: BAM. I’m calm.
When things are in their place: BAM. I’m calm.
I know that I shouldn’t let other things control how I act with my family, but sometimes I do.
It’s funny – if Mickey raises his voice, I can almost guarantee it is because we are late to be somewhere. While I never mind being late (sorry!), it drives Mickey up the wall! So, if you come to our house at 9:20 on a Sunday morning and our van is still home… I can promise you that there is a grown man inside, pacing back and forth, trying not to yell “PUT YOUR SHOES ON!” 🙂 LOL.
To help me keep things organized, I do things:
1. I keep the house clean (and the kids help!)
The kids help me clean the house and this is how I do it. It is my little trick that has been working WONDERS. It’s the best thing we’ve done and I don’t think I’ll ever go back to any other way. You can find out more here.
2. I declutter our house.
I keep it clutter-free because clutter=stress. (It’s proven!)
I do this by taking my own declutter challenge. I eventually put it on the blog because I wanted other people to be able to take it, too. It is 7 days of decluttering. You essentially clean, organize & free up your home from clutter. You can see it here.
3. I keep a planner.
It has routines, times, numbers, debt info, passwords, meal plans, menu items, grocery lists, etc… all in ONE binder. It makes our life so much easier!
I finally hired a designer to make it look a little nicer (lol) and put it on the blog. I use it every single day and so does my family. They know to look in there for information and where to add their own things. You can find that here.
4. I remind myself every single day:
The days are slow, but the years fly by. I want every moment in our home to be something that they can look back on with fond memories. I want them to tell their children, “This is a song that my mom used to sing to me.”
Just the other day (another story coming), our oldest son, Jack, was going to bed. I was tucking him in and he said, “Can you sing me Toora Loora Loora and that other one that Great Grandma sang to Gi (my mom) and Gi sang to you, the one about ‘Playmate, come out and play with me?'” You could have knocked me over. This child has not wanted me to sing him a song in probably four years.
I sang my little heart out for him, as I stroked his hair and hugged him. One day, very very soon, he will not want me to sing to him. I know these things are coming, so I soak them in now. I work on the relationship now that will bond my children and me forever. I want them to WANT to come home in 20 years – bringing their kids to visit me, joining me for a trip to get ice cream or to sitting with me while we both get pedicures (Allie and I will do this one day), or even just stop to have their dad help them fix something on the car.
Ok.. I’ve rambled on enough for today. I just wanted to remind you that we are all human and we lose our tempers at times. So let us find the culprit and knock it out. 🙂 If it is decluttering or organizing, I hope that those little tools help.
Have a fantastic day!
Give your kids a squeeze and make them laugh today.