Stop yelling at your kids with this SIMPLE and effective strategy. Rooted in positive parenting, this tip stopped me from yelling at my kids and has helped calm our household greatly.

Stop Yelling at your Kids with One Simple Trick

Posted on Posted in Positive Parenting Strategies, Posts, Readers' Favourites

Yelling at your kids can become a hard habit to break but it can also be quite damaging. This one simple strategy stops me from yelling at my kids and it can work for you too.


It is one moment that I yelled at my kids that is forever etched in my mind. Each time I think of it, my heart sinks and my stomach churns. Nevertheless, I want it to stay with me.


It was summer break. Seeking refuge from the heat outside, I decided we would have an indoor day. Aside from that, the day was nothing remarkable. My only plan was to get through a massive list of to-dos while my kids played. I don’t want to be the parent who always orchestrates my kids’ fun. So I shooed them off to play in the basement.


My kids weren’t exactly on board.

They wanted me. Sensing my preoccupation, both my daughter and my son started whining. A lot. It certainly felt like two steps forward and one step back. No matter what I tackled, they were undoing something. Whether they were making a mess or fighting or asking me for their umpteenth snack, I tried to carry on. I did my best to appease them with whatever they wanted so they would just let me be. They got more screen time and more sweets than I care to admit. All of it was so I could just get sh*t done.


It didn’t matter.

The more I ushered them away, the more they fought, whined and complained. Despite increasing frustration, I just kept fighting them off.


That is until there was one fight too many.

I was standing in the kitchen. Both kids were on the stairs. I can’t even remember which kid pushed the other. But it was the proverbial straw that broke the camel’s back.


Then it happened.

From the depths of my being, I yelled at my kids.


Now let’s get things straight, this was neither the first nor last time I yelled at my kids Regrettably, I do yell from time-to-time. I lose my cool and just yell. But the anger I allowed to boil over that day was so intense that even I was taken aback.


The words, “Stop it both of you!” were louder and more shrill than anything I’d ever heard. And I was talking to my kids.


[Related reading: Your Kids Will Listen if you do THIS]


Crestfallen, my son dropped to his knees. It was as if I could see his heart breaking. My feisty daughter yelled back. “Don’t you scream! You’re mean!” With that, she started to cry too.


My little ones’ reactions were the most potent reality check I could have had. The anger washed out of me instantly as I grabbed a hold of both of them and apologized.


Slowly, it started to sink in.

Everything I had done that day had been a lead up to this moment.


There are times my kids play independently. They go outside, or play with their toys, or set something fun up in the basement. That day, I had been fighting a losing battle. My kids were craving connection with me. No matter how they tried to get my attention, I remained more focused on task completion than on them.


After that day, I read, researched, and reflected. In time, I adopted a powerful tactic to stop me from yelling at my kids.


Stop yelling at your kids with this SIMPLE and effective strategy. Rooted in positive parenting, this tip stopped me from yelling at my kids and has helped calm our household greatly.

The strategy I use to stop yelling at my kids…

I will preface it by saying that self-care is crucial. If I haven’t slept, had alone time, or eaten properly, I can’t parent well. I also have found that being present, namely leaving my phone and to-do list helps greatly when tensions are rising. But the biggest strategy that has stopped me from yelling is modelling.


In that split second just before I would yell, I take a deep breath. Then, I say as calmly as possible how I’m feeling. Simply, all it is is doing exactly what I wish they would do when they’re melting down. Except I’m doing it myself.


What this looks like…

Often, I use phrasing like, “I’m disappointed that you chose to hurt your brother.”

Other times, I say, “I’m feeling frustrated that you’re not listening.” Or, “All of the whining is making me feel really angry.”


The modelling goes further than that, though.

Not only do I identify why I feel as though my blood is about to boil, I also tell my kids how I’m going to calm down.

I will say, “I’m going to deep breathe and count down from five.”

Or, “I need space right now. I’m going to stand over here for a moment and then, I’ll be back to talk to you.”

Why I love this strategy to stop yelling at my kids
  1. It gives me release. I’m still expressing the anger I feel, however, I’m not losing my cool.
  2. I’m modelling how I’d like my children to act when they feel overwhelmed too. For example, instead of hitting my son when she gets frustrated, my daughter now says, “I feel like hitting him!” This is a huge win.


This hasn’t been a magic ‘cure’ but it has helped so much.

It’s still a work in progress. I do still raise my voice. And so, I apologize and explain I’ll try to do better next time just as I would like them to do when they act similarly.


It isn’t a perfect solution but it is effective and impactful.


Want more great ideas like these? Sign up for my newsletter below. You’ll get free positive parenting printables and play-based learning activities.

Additional positive parenting strategies
  • Sure there aren't any kids that listen all the time, but I would go so far to say my kids aren't obedient. There are two big reasons why I'm more than okay with kids not being obedient. Find out why by clicking here. Positive parenting, gentle parenting, empathetic parenting, authoritarian versus authoritative parenting, moral reasoning critical thinking. Parenting toddlers and preschoolers.
    November 7, 2016
    My Kids Aren't Obedient and That's Okay
    Read More
  • Kids not listening? These two helpful strategies are great tips on how to get your kids to listen. Great positive parenting strategies for parents with young kids, toddlers, and preschoolers.
    May 3, 2017
    Here are Effective Strategies That Will get Your Kids to Listen
    Read More
  • The One Strategy That Turns Tyrannical Behaviour Around
    June 2, 2017
    Positive Discipline: The Best Strategy to Turn Bad Behaviour Around
    Read More

11 thoughts on “Stop Yelling at your Kids with One Simple Trick

  1. That is a fantastic strategy. I need to count to ten while I take a deep breath because I take a little longer to calm down, but modeling “I feel…” statements is brilliant!

  2. I love this suggestion. I have a hard time with yelling. I also find it especially true when I’m tired or trying to get too many things done at once. I’m definitely going to try this technique. I love how you can tell it’s working by your daughter doing it too.

  3. Self care is a huge part of how good or bad I respond to conflict in my house and shouldn’t be an excuse for yelling like it is a lot of times. Thanks for sharing your struggle and how you’re learning. I am definitely guilty of this.

  4. What a great way to teach your kids healthy emotional expression. I often tell my counseling clients that “Emotions aren’t bad, but it’s what you do with your emotion that can get you into trouble.” By taking a deep breath and expressing how you feel calmly, you are showing them that there are helpful ways to handle big emotions. Way to go momma!

  5. self care is so important. When I have gone days and days without time for myself, those are the days things are usually rough on my house and anything my daughter does is going to irk me

Leave a Reply