04 January, 2011

Stop Yelling!

Yelling is not an effective means of communication.
By learning how not to yell, he can create a respectful, dignified and relaxed atmosphere in his home, classroom or workplace.
Reflect about why you may have felt justified to yell in the past. Mac Bledsoe, president and founder, Parenting with Dignity, suggests that anyone who chooses to yell at a child should consider some questions, including whether, barring an emergency situation, any justifiable reason for yelling at a child exists.
Build a plan for recurring situations and substitute different strategies to restore a sense of mutual respect and civility in your relationships. Remember that no amount of yelling at children, in particular, will substitute for following through on reasonable requests for their cooperation. The positive results of your calm insistence, refusal to back down and willingness to levy consequences for lack of cooperation will soon convince you to abandon yelling as an effective parenting technique.
Communicate your willingness to change behavior patterns that are not working, and ask if the other person is willing to do the same. Psychotherapist Jim Hutt suggests the following way of opening the conversation: "The last time we discussed this, I did not react effectively. I am going to try some new behaviors."
Build a non-yelling habit. Habits of all kinds--both good and bad--literally create neural connections in the brain. It's a simple mechanism: habits reinforced by practice strengthen neural connections; habits weakened by non-practice eventually result in dismantling those neural connections. Help your brain to work with you, not against you.
Be patient. It may take several weeks for your new dignified approach to begin have its effect, because your children, spouse, or employees may have been ignoring your conversational statements and hearing you yell at them for years. It will take at least this much time for you to firmly establish a new pattern of communication. But with practice, it will happen. (See References 1)
Start now. Approach change as if you're learning a new skill or a new language. You won't be expert or fluent right away; you'll need persistent focus and practice. Overcoming a destructive habit involves changing the reactive behaviors associated with it, and the effort can be stressful. The old saying "no pain, no gain" is particularly relevant here. You should expect some discomfort; resolve not to let that knock you off the wagon.

tips taken from Lorena Cassady