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Β It’s 313 days since I last raised my voice at my daughter.

This didn’t come easily to me. It doesn’t mean I never lost my temper or never got upset. It just means I didn’t raise my voice or lift a finger. As difficult and strenuous as it may have been, it’s come with its share of slow but much-awaited rewards.

On a Thursday in July, 3 years ago, I gave gratitude forΒ completing an entire week without yellingΒ at a 7-year-old. At the same time, my heart was fighting inside, telling me I shouldn’t have even had to yell at a child. This tug of war, the battle between ‘should’ and ‘shouldn’t’ yell, made me examine a very important aspect of being a parent.

Every time I yelled at Gy, it was for a number of reasons:

* I was angry

* I’d been defied

* I was losing control over the situation

* I was tired and beyond exhausted

* I hated when things didn’t go according to plan

Common factor for all triggers? Yes. That was me.

What I didn’t realise was I was offloading a lot of my expectations and emotions on to a child. And this isn’t entirely my fault. As parents, we all do it. We shouldn’t beat ourselves up over it though. We can, however, learn from the mistakes.

Kids are incredibly resilient and forgiving too. They’ll bounce back, hug you and forgive you all within the space of 5 minutes, maybe less. But you’ll notice that as they grow older, they are more observant of the way you handle stress and manage your emotions. And they watch and learn.

Slowly, I began trying to put into practice a few key concepts that I’d learnt in the last 3 years.


Yelling less

Let go of the small stuff

I stopped yelling at her for not doing her homework or completing her school work. I figured that she needs to learn these things at her own pace.

Take a deep breath

It’s tempting to want to explode when the fury of being defied hits you full in the face. My suggestion? Walk away and take a few deep breaths.

Listen to the reasons

Sometimes, kids do things because they are upset with someone else. You may not be the actual target but you end up being one anyway. When calm, find out if something else is bothering the child.

Spend more time with them

I know this sounds trite but it’s one of the things that really works. Whether the child is one year old or ten years old, it doesn’t matter. They want us to be with them, even if it’s for 30 minutes of uninterrupted time just reading, talking, playing or lying down together.

Let them make some mistakes

I’d get wildly upset that she wasn’t being careful with her belongings and roundly accuse her of irresponsibility. No surprise that she continued to be so. But allowing her to forget a few things and face the consequences has helped her learn this on her own.

Appreciate the good

In June this year, she started showing a marked improvement in her school work and I consciously started acknowledging that, telling her that it was admirable that she had started taking responsibility for herself. Praising the efforts, not the child, have gone a long way in building her self-confidence and also eliminated the need to yell.

Why is it important that I share this today?

Because we need reminders. Each reminder is an important lesson and it’s always the same lesson: Love.

In a world where we are constantly forgetting the good in favour of the horrific, we must remind ourselves that we have a genuine role to play in the universe. We are parents, caregivers to children who look up to us and address us with affection, trust and love.

Above all else, love. That takes care of just about everything.

Are you a yeller? Do you lose your temper at your children? I was that parent. Until I learnt to stop yelling. Here is how yelling less taught me one very important lesson and you will understand too.

Pinnable image courtesy: Shutterstock

Image of woman with finger on her lips by FabrikaSimf via Shutterstock

Woman with finger on lips and the caption talks about how yelling less taught an important lesson

Shailaja V

Hi there! I'm Shailaja Vishwanath, a blogger with 12 years of blogging experience and a parent to a teen. I work as a digital marketing and social media consultant. From positive parenting tips to useful productivity hacks, social media advice to blogging advice, you'll find them all right here. Welcome to my blog.


Archana K B · July 13, 2016 at 6:05 am

Thanks for this.
Still trying everyday, with guilt…

Srobona Das · July 13, 2016 at 6:21 am

Oh Shailaja love..thank you for this. Love ia the key..beautiful post. Sharing!

Hena Jose · July 13, 2016 at 8:01 am

Very true. It feels like each line is written for me. Thank you

Aparna · July 13, 2016 at 8:02 am

This post is so you. Honest, non-condescending and yet so profound :). Some good reminders in there, and I definitely feel like I need them these days, so thank you!

sridevi datta · July 13, 2016 at 8:38 am

You have actually installed a yell-free counter? How adorable is that?! On a more serious note, I can so relate to this article. I also yell at my kids, although the frequency seems to have dropped now. But then, you should really ask them. A lovely, honest post Shailaja. Loved it. Hugs to Gy and you. πŸ™‚

Rachna · July 13, 2016 at 9:00 am

So you,really! You're a mom after my heart. So honest, so full with love, so willing to look within and improve. I yell at my kids too and sometimes funny don't even feel bad about it. But my yelling is quite harmless. I avoid being nasty. What you've written is a great reminder for every parent. Lots of love!

swati bassi · July 13, 2016 at 9:25 am

I am yet to experience motherhood but completely agree with all your points. I see my relative shouting like hell at her kids.

Subha Rajagopal · July 13, 2016 at 12:09 pm

Superb post!We moms are given to yelling when kids dont listen to us.Requires lot of patience to not shout back but I guess it is worth it in the end

Shailaja Vishwanath · July 13, 2016 at 12:31 pm

Thanks for reading, Archana. I know it's tough and some days are harder than others. Try and keep track of small victories. It really motivates one to follow through.

Shailaja Vishwanath · July 13, 2016 at 12:36 pm

Thank you so much, Shilpa πŸ™‚

Shailaja Vishwanath · July 13, 2016 at 12:42 pm

Thank you for reading, Srobona πŸ™‚

Shailaja Vishwanath · July 13, 2016 at 12:44 pm

We all go through this, Ramya. It's almost like a rite of passage, being a parent. Tell you the truth? I need the reminder myself. It helps to watch that timer in the sidebar and will myself not to yell. Very motivating. Do try and let me know how it goes.

Shailaja Vishwanath · July 13, 2016 at 12:45 pm

Thank you so much, Hena! I am so glad it touched a chord.

Shailaja Vishwanath · July 13, 2016 at 12:50 pm

Aww thank you so much! I am always wary when writing parenting posts. It's why I update infrequently too. I don't want to come off as 'instructional'. It's kind of deeply ingrained so I have to work on the voice at times. πŸ™‚

Shailaja Vishwanath · July 13, 2016 at 12:52 pm

I know, right? A fellow blogger kindly created the code for me when I reached out to a blogging group 3 years ago and it's been on my sidebar ever since πŸ™‚

Thank you so much, Sridevi. Lovely to see you here!

vishal bheeroo · July 13, 2016 at 2:25 pm

I don't need to say more for you've done a perfect job of self assessment and constructive criticism. That's the best part.

Shilpa Garg · July 13, 2016 at 2:36 pm

Those are some great pointers for all parents to ponder on and act on too. I have done quite some yelling on my kid when he was young, but not anymore. May be because he is a teenager now. And also because he is in a boarding school now, so our relationship has undergone a change, where I treat him as an adult!

Shailaja Vishwanath · July 13, 2016 at 3:05 pm

Thank you so much, Rachna πŸ™‚ I know we've talked about this often and honestly, we must work with what works for us. A stern look and firm voice works for now with Gy. I love how you mention 'avoid being nasty'. That's crucial. Love and hugs right back at you!

Shailaja Vishwanath · July 13, 2016 at 3:06 pm

Thank you for reading and sharing your view, Swati! Yes, many parents shout at their kids. It takes lots of effort. Hope they can curb the impulse.

Shailaja Vishwanath · July 13, 2016 at 3:07 pm

It is totally worth it! I know exactly what you mean. Thank you so much, Subha!

Shailaja Vishwanath · July 13, 2016 at 3:10 pm

Thank you so much, Vishal. It took a lot of energy to come to terms with this, to be honest.

Shailaja Vishwanath · July 13, 2016 at 3:11 pm

I remember that your son is in boarding school so it must be a totally different scene at your home. I completely understand the need to treat them like an adult, or little adults at least.

Parul · July 13, 2016 at 5:05 pm

I am sure it is not easy. Exercising control like this one is a good step and will help set an example for Gy too.

SHANAYA TALES · July 14, 2016 at 1:04 am

I can't say that I have made any progress on this front, but thanks to you, I try.

Shailaja Vishwanath · July 14, 2016 at 2:23 am

Definitely not easy, Parul. It's been a journey of more stumbles than triumphs. But slowly moving towards a better awareness of what it is to be a patient parent.

Shailaja Vishwanath · July 14, 2016 at 2:24 am

I stumbled many many times before I came anywhere close to this number. You've begun even earlier and trust me, it's a slow but rewarding road.

Kala Ravi · July 14, 2016 at 5:35 pm

Yes, I needed to read this today! My kids are way older, but I haven't turned any wiser….decibels don't seem to be coming down either! Your post gives me hope. Let me start over again, will let you know how it goes. Bless you for sharing this!

Hema · July 14, 2016 at 5:40 pm

Way to go, Shailaja. I need to read this post everyday. It is so hard not to yell when my little threenager is being difficult!

Shailaja Vishwanath · July 14, 2016 at 5:45 pm

You're most welcome, Kala. It's something that spoke to me loud and clear 3 years ago and it's not been easy. But I do see the difference it makes to our relationships- both with our children and with others. Wishing you all the luck and do keep me posted on your progress πŸ™‚

Shailaja Vishwanath · July 14, 2016 at 5:47 pm

Oh trust me, Hema. 3 year olds are experts in driving us up the wall. I don't blame you. But the good news is starting earlier can do wonders for our self control. Good luck πŸ™‚

the little princess · July 27, 2016 at 7:25 am

Such an important post.

The turning point for me was when my mom came over to stay with us for a month. I was this screaming monster and my poor 6 yr old elder one(then), the target…i was having a difficult time managing home, job and a new born child, and like you say, I guess all my frustrations were multiplied when the 6yo threw tantrums. A hard hitting sit down from mom and a threat (almost felt like one!) had me gradually mellow down. I think I lost that yelling syndrome during that one month.

Shubhangi @ The Little Princess

Found In Folsom · September 7, 2016 at 8:11 pm

First of all happy for you for coming so far without yelling. I don’t know how I can yell less, Shailaja. I try but it doesn’t continue more than a couple of days or few hours. πŸ™ She makes such huge mess of the house…I can’t explain. I think I still have some patience left in me to deal with her but the teenager drives me up the wall. I wish I could slow down a bit on my expectations to bath on time, clean up on time….I leave to work early, so I want to get it done by not waking up till 11:00 PM
Found In Folsom recently posted…Ammusings – 5!My Profile

Majaa Mami · July 15, 2017 at 2:50 pm

Hi shailaja your little one is the most adorable child and i know she is a very soft and tolerant child. I am happy that you have decided not to yell at her to release your tensions.God bless your baby try to spend maximum time with her because when you are there for your child when she needs you she will never do things for you to yell at her.

lavina · September 11, 2017 at 8:03 pm

Going through your Yelling less posts dear, I can so relate to your melt downs..feel so connected.
Thanks for motivating me and touching so many lives by your posts. Just started with my first step, do have a look..

    Shailaja · September 11, 2017 at 8:48 pm

    Thank you, Lavina! That’s wonderful to hear. Read your first post and left a comment. Wishing you all the best. πŸ™‚

Dr Shivangi Aggarwal · July 24, 2018 at 12:40 pm

Hi Shailaja, I loved the way you listed down the causes for yelling at a child. Most Indian parents can relate to it. I have also written a similar post guiding the parents on the right ways to scold a child.
If you like to just check out and give your valuable comments on it:


    Shailaja · July 25, 2018 at 10:06 am

    Thank you so much Shivangi. I really appreciate that. I will be sure to comment and check out your blog soon

How I spoke about my life as a parenting blogger with 'Mums and Stories' · October 24, 2016 at 6:33 am

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[…] you. You’ve started on the yelling less journey. That’s the good news. For another, we learn from our mistakes. When we stay aware of this, we move forward. Even if it’s one step forward for every step […]

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