Hello. My name is Stacy and I yell.
Sometimes, it’s because I’m trying to watch Big Mama teach me how to put my hair in a side bun and the kids are being really loud. Sure, I have really short hair and could not possibly wear a side bun, but what does that have to do with anything?
Then, there are times I yell because the kids are yelling and I want them to stop. Hypocrisy ain’t pretty, y’all.
A gentle answer turns away anger, but a harsh word stirs up wrath. – Proverbs 15:1
Lately, however, I’ve been intentionally choosing to be gentle. I haven’t been perfect at it, but I have made progress.
For instance, I have one particular little one that gets upset easily. She is quite emotional and I have no idea where she might get that particular trait. (Insert whatever emoticon looks “guilty” here.) In the past, I would hear her yelling/crying/whining from another room and I would a.) yell at her to stop yelling or b.) yell for her to come to be so I could tell her to stop yelling.
Mercy. I just don’t even know what to say about that. So, I will move on.
My new strategy has been, when I hear her yelling/crying/whining, I go to her. Or, if I am rocking a baby or something of the sort, I will calmly ask her to come to me. Then, in a soft voice, I will talk to her.
This does two things. First, it really does calm her down. Often, the source of her anxiety is that she feels left out or ignored by the older children. So, when I take the time to be face to face with her and listen to her, it is a huge help. Second, it calms me down. There are not many things that send my blood pressure soaring quite like whining children. My yelling, however, only gets me worked up and makes matters worse. And don’t even get me started on the example it sets for the children on how to deal with each other when they are aggravated.
So, this new way of doing things – this gentle way – makes huge differences in the feel of our home. There is also another blessing to this way of doing things.
but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God’s sight is very precious. – 1 Peter 3:4
A gentle spirit is a thing of beauty. When God sees us being gentle and loving with one another, he thinks it is just precious. I, for one, want God to see me and think, “Ah, isn’t she precious.”
If you, like me, have finally come to the realization that your yelling isn’t working – try a gentle answer and a quiet spirit.
Have a wonderful day!