1 Simple Tip to Help You Stop Yelling

I am a YELLER! I admit it loud and clear. That doesn’t mean I like it and it doesn’t mean I am not always trying to make the change to stop yelling.

The thing that constantly gets me, is that I should know better. I was a teacher for 12 years in the classroom, and took care of children that were not my own. Yelling was not my go to tactic, yet in my home I let it overtake me. Lately, I have been wondering what was different. What tips could I try from my teacher training that might just help me stop yelling at my kids in my own home?

That is when I remembered this one simple tip that I used daily in my classroom. In fact, if I didn’t try this first, I was usually unsuccessful at changing a child’s desired behaviors.

One Simple Tip to Help Stop Yelling


When I think of the reasons I yell in my home, I can usually narrow the reasons down to just a few triggers…

The kids are arguing.
The kids aren’t doing what I asked them to.
The kids aren’t listening.
The kids are being too loud.
The kids are being too rambunctious.

The kids… the kids… the kids…

Do you see the problem with those statements like I do?  The focus is on the kids. The focus is on what the kids are doing that I don’t like. Where am I in this scenario? What am I doing? How am I involved in what is going in?

The answer. I am usually not close to them. I am usually busy in the kitchen, on the phone, on the other side of the other room, on the couch, with the baby… you name it… I am not near them. In the classroom, that would never fly. I could never expect the children to manage their own behaviors if I was nowhere near them. I would never expect them to hear my requests from the other side of the classroom.

If the children in my classroom started to get too loud, too busy, or too angry… I wouldn’t sit at my desk and yell across the room at them to settle down.

NO! I would get CLOSER!!!!!

Mother and her child enjoy walk in park

I would walk over to the children needing my assistance. I would quietly place my hand on their shoulder or their back. I would bend down and speak to them in a kind and respectful tone.

I would tell them what I need from them and give them suggestions for how to change their behavior. This simple tip worked 90% of the time. How had I forgotten this simple tip?

For the last week, I have been trying this out. Instead of repeating myself over and over again, instead of yelling across the room, and instead of putting the blame on the children… I have been moving closer.

When the kids start to get ramped up, instead of yelling from across the room to settle down… I get closer.

When the kids are starting to argue, instead of yelling above their voices to get along… I get closer.

When the kids are ignoring my requests, instead of yelling my request louder… I get closer.

Get Closer #stopyelling

I get closer.

I make sure they hear me. I make sure I am helping them through their problems. I make sure I am there for them.

Guess what?

90% of the time this has worked for me. When I remember to use this simple tip first, chances are the yelling doesn’t happen. Chances are, I can keep the peace in our home and not let things spiral out of control.

Are you a yeller too? What tips and strategies do you use to help you from yelling? I would love to know! Leave me a comment.

More Resources To Stop Yelling:

I know it sounds crazy, but lately we’ve been using essential oils to help calm the mood in our house!  A few months ago I would have laughed at anyone that told me that a few drops of essential oils could help in a stressful situation. In fact, I kinda laugh that I say it now. However, I feel like I would be doing you a disservice if I didn’t share what has been helping me the last few months since writing this post.

I was pretty much at my wits end, but have found some clarity and calmness that allows me to think on my feet and take the time to get closer with my kids.

Click here to learn where we get our oils and see our awesome special for this month! Our favorites are Stress Away, Lavender, Citrus Fresh, Joy, and Cedarwood.

Grab this FREE poster set and go deeper on how to get your kids to listen, follow directions, and do what you ask the first time.

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 More Resources…

 Punished by Rewards

3 Changes I am Making to Stop Yelling Today

15 Tips to Calm Angry Child

Stop Yelling Challenge by Dirt and Boogers

Want to Stop Yelling? PIN IT:

This Secret to Stop Yelling Is Easier than You think

More Adventures In Imperfect Parenting

Stop saying these 2 words to your whining kid

Parenting Angry Child

200 thoughts on “1 Simple Tip to Help You Stop Yelling”

  1. wendy

    Just had an experiment in this at my house today….hours before I read this post. I sat on the floor with all of them and discussed issues we all need to work on. It worked!!!! I had to remind a few more times today(and everyday!) But I’m calm, the kids are calm, and nobody has been yelling since then. Great post!!!

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      I am so happy that you like this and it is helpful! That makes me smile!

  2. Louise

    Thank you for this, it’s a really wonderful and helpful reminder; so often my kids’ behaviour gets worse and worse despite my escalating attempts to “control” them, when all they really want is my full attention, even if it’s only for a few moments.

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      I am so happy this was helpful for you. I have to remind myself of this often. Even today after writing this.

  3. Nicole

    All I can say is “Thank You”. It is my ‘dirty little secret’ that I have tried so hard to kick. An amazing reminder and yet, so simple. Something I use daily at work with other people’s children but forget when I’m with mine.

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      I know, why do I forget all the time too! Thank you for your kind words!

  4. Aweseome! As an OT and someone that has worked with kids in one fashion or another for almost my whole life, I have had the same experience as you. I am also a yeller. You are soooo right about proximity, what a helpful tool to remember! So very helpful!!!

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      Thank you so much. Isn’t it crazy how different we respond to our own children. I am really struggling and these little tips help when I remember them myself.

  5. Diane Watkins

    This is soo true if I’m not paying attention they act up, the yelling & fighting starts, they just want my full attention!

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      Yes, there is proven research about the proximity of “teacher” to students and the affect on their behavior.I am so glad this was helpful!

    2. Charlotta Bernau

      The “full attention” is what I’m struggling with because when is OK to tell them I can have my time too? When is that learned? I feel it important for my son to be independent. Please don’t take that as I’m not taking time to teach him through play, but as an only child I would love to see creativity play out.

  6. You hit the nail on the head. Most of the time when the kids are acting up, it is because I’m busy and don’t want to take the effort to get closer and help them navigate the situation. There is a time and place to let them work it out, but most of the time I just need to be involved more.

    When I had my preschool I was a lot more diligent. Isn’t that funny how most teachers are more patient and careful with other people’s children?

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      Some days I wonder how I did such a patient job with so many other children but with my own I have no patience. It is truly a different struggle.

      1. Stephanie

        A mom is emotionally vested in her own kids to a degree that she never could be with someone else’s. Every misdeed on their part feels like a failure. As a teacher, she might wonder, “What the heck is going on at home?” But as a Mom, she has no one to point a finger at but herself. And that is HARD.

      2. Sarah

        I’m a teacher and I find it much easierto bbe patient in the classroom than at home! I think it’s because while I’m teaching, my students are my only focus. Quite frankly, that’s not how it is at home. I do a LOT with my kids but I only have a couple “home” days a week and there’s meals to make, laundry, bills, phonecalls, cleaning… you know. I know you’re right: proximity would probably solve the problem! Only, I’ll get nothing done…

  7. So hard, but so true. I struggle with the balance of everything in life and letting my kids ‘manage’ themselves. It’s obviously not working because I,too, am a yeller! I need to be directly involved and get closer. Thanks for this post! Sharing on my blog fb page!

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      Wonderful, So happy it was helpful!

  8. Toria

    Thank you so much… I just read this after yelling because my child was refusing to get in the bath! I too was an early years teacher and now work with adults. I have infinite patience with my clients and have often wondered why my child doesn’t listen to me the way my students did! Now I have read this I can’t believe I didn’t think of it before.

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      I am so glad it was helpful! It is simple and easy to try!

  9. Kristin

    I am a teacher of 14 years, and for some reason remembering to implement this strategy in my own home is has been really challenging over the past 5 years. My husband and I have been trying this similar strategy with our own children in the past month and I have seen a huge improvement in all of us. I wish I would have remembered it sooner. Now I just have to remember to continue to move closer. Thanks for the reminder. Great write up! 🙂

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      Thank you for your kind words! Isn’t it amazing how hard using “teacher strategies” in our own home can be? It surprises me when I remember a tip from my teacher days and it actually works at home too!

  10. Patti

    I’ve heard the saying, “the more you connect, the less you correct.” This is exactly what you’re saying. I tend to be a yeller, but not always. My husband is also a yeller. He really needs to read this!! Thank you for your insight!

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      I am so excited that this was helpful. I hope you continue to follow along so we can support each other 🙂

  11. I’ve turned into a yeller too, so I’m definitely going to give this a try! The hardest part for me is when I’m “wrist deep” in a poopy diaper with one kid, and something (like not sharing toys, or pushing each other) is happening between the other 2 kids. I always end up yelling then, but it never does any good. I think I’m going to try just letting that situation wait, finish changing the diaper, and then walk over and deal with it. I always feel like I need to address the situation right as it’s happening, but it’s probably better to wait to talk to them about rather than yelling. This is a great tip, thanks for sharing!

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      Oh I completely understand! You have your hands full for sure. I have to remember to get up, to wait, and get closer when I can. Because, honestly they are not hearing me even if I am yelling across the room.

  12. Christine

    So glad to hear I’m not alone in this daily struggle, I feel like a weight has been lifted off my shoulders. THANK YOU for this, this is something I struggle with (especially this time of year when the kids have been home all summer). My patience runs short and this is a great reminder. I will really try to take a deep breath, stop what I’m doing and get closer.

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      Wonderful! I am so glad it was helpful!

  13. Cris

    I’m a teacher for 15 years and use to do that! I try never yell in classroom, but at home with my kids i’ve never think about that! How can it be! I’m sure it will works. I’m going to practise from now.
    Sorry because my english is not so good, i’m spanish and usually don’t use english in order to comunicate. Thank’s
    Gracias por el consejo, vot a intentarlo en casa seguro que funciona.

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      That is so sweet! Thank you for your kind words!

  14. Marloes

    With tears in my eyes I’m reading this! I’m a mom of 4 kids (6½, 5½, 3½ and 2½). And I’m care taking of another 5½ year old and every other week of 2 more (10½, and 6½) kids. You understand this can be some what over whelming since i’m just a SAHM, and have no ‘training’ whatsoever. I find myself yelling, raising my voice way more (and way louder) than I want to!! I really need to stop this. It doesn’t work, and it only makes me feel bad!!! I’m going to try to do what you said, GET CLOSER!!! I hope this is the magic trick that will help me stop yelling. I’m so longing for a ‘mommy scream free’ house! Thank you again!!!

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      I can’t guarantee this will be the last trick you need, but it definitely can help set you up for more successes. 🙂 Good Luck! And stay in touch. Let me know how it goes!

  15. tina

    As a widowed mom of three I feel like that’s all I’ve done the past 7 yrs. Never at the kids in class though. I guess my X kids need me but when I get home I’m just so tired and have to do all that work too. Gonna try this and hope it’s not too late!! Thanks

  16. Shannon

    Oh, I love this. My life could be your life. I was a CALM 2nd grade teacher for 7 years and then I had 3 kids. I stay at home now and am a YELLER too. HELP! I so agree with you, and thank you for the reminder to GET UP and GET CLOSER! It totally works.

  17. Jackie Carter

    How true! My husband has Altzheimers and yelling is completely counterproductive . A soft voice and yet another explanation, if necessary, is the only way. Yelling just makes him more agitated and confused. I sometimes wish that I had more patience but have to accept that occasionally, the only answer, is to walk away, calm down and then try again.

  18. Yes! Yes! Yes! I, too, was a teacher who knew how to set up my classroom environment in a way that encouraged cooperation, independent learning and self-regulation….however, when I came home I was tired from being ‘on’ all day and just wanted my own children to get along, do what they were supposed to do and be cooperative. The main difference I experienced was that even though I ‘loved’ the children in my classroom I did not have the same emotional connection to their behavior as with my own children. The combination of deep emotional connection and exhaustion lead even the most devoted parent to taking her children’s behavior personally and crumbling into a screaming, threatening parent. This misunderstanding leads us to spinning stories in our heads that leads to us feeling unappreciated, unheard, and frustrated…zapping whatever patience and love is buried under our stress…YIKES!!! I learned that the answer is to BREATHE, REMIND MYSELF NOT TO TAKE THIS AS A PERSONAL ASSAULT and as you beautifully said, “MOVE CLOSER ….to my own CENTER, to my own INNER KNOWING, and to the child I ADORE…
    Thank you for a beautiful article!

  19. Gloria Wahl

    I JUST LOVE THIS ONE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! THANKS FOR POSTING THIS!!! I WILL TRY IT TODAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  20. Anna

    I feel the same exact way. I made this realization a little while back, but it’s easy to forget when you have so much to do all of the time. I feel horrible for yelling, and even more so when I realize that I didn’t need to. They are not young adults, they need more “closer” supervision.

  21. wish I read that earlier today…. Tomorrow is another day. I knew it, but I forgot it. Great post, Dayna. Thank You!

  22. Jency

    I have a harder time controlling my volumes with my husband. I like the idea of getting closer to the kids instead of yelling across the room AT them. But with my husband the closet I get to him, the list I yelp to try and make my point. I have absolutely no patience with adults. Anyone else experience this? I feel like I’m using too much energy to hold back when I talk to adults. I hate yelling. But I hate stupid people more and I feel I should be more tolerant but I can’t.

  23. jessica

    wow. I feel like you got in my brain and stole my thoughts. I also taught for twelve years before staying home with kids and I am always saying that I Know the things that don’t work with kids like yelling and sarcasm, yet I do them with my own children. I get frustrated with myself and want to stop but it’s so hard in the moment. and you are right. it’s a me thing not a them thing. It’s when I’m frustrated bc I’m trying to do something. Thanks for the reminder and tips!!!

  24. Shannon

    Thank you! Thank you! I am also a yeller. It seems like my kids only listen when I do yell but I know that can’t be true because I’m still yelling. I’m going to implement this wonderful technique today!! I have a feeling my house will be much quieter in the future!!

  25. Kierston

    I like this and I’m excited to try. What do you do for fighting in the car while you are driving? That is our biggest obstacle and I have a car that seats 8! My oldest and middle kids get loud, argue, spit at each other, etc in the car.

  26. Cherie

    I yell when I have a lack of sleep. More sleep, equals less tension, equals less stress, equals a happy, peaceful me.

  27. Tamara Majoros

    Thank you for posting this. I admit shamefully that I too yell. It makes me feel horrible and how can I teach my son not to yell and flip out if I yell and flip out?? Sigh….I will say I am not the most patient of moms, again, heavy sigh but this will hopefully help me to help my son and myself through our collective yelling and add some peace back to our house. Again, thank you!!!

  28. Lisa

    I would like to try this. In my 7 years as a mother, I have found myself getting louder and louder, and I hate it. This summer, in my fifth pregnancy, I nearly died from blood clots in my lungs, and the resulting strained heart. WHen I was finally released from the hospital (after nearly 3 weeks), I could barely get out of a chair, my lungs were in such bad shape, on top of being hugely pregnant. I had to yell from the chair to get my four young kids’ attention, even if they weren’t in trouble (although looking back, it may have saved oxygen just to go ahead and get up!) I’m feeling much better now that I’ve had the baby, but now, I’m sitting in the chair nursing or soothing a newborn most of the time and still yelling from my chair. It’s going to be a colossal effort to get up every time there’s an altercation, but I am going to endeavor to make a go of it and see if I can’t help our home be more peaceful. Thank you.

  29. Mary

    When my children were younger I use to be a big time yeller. So I started to leave my windows open. No one wants to be heard yelling by the neighbors. It really helped for a long time. Now that my kids are older, I have started yelling again. I have one young adult daughter, and 2 teenaged sons. My boys can and I can really butt heads at times. I think I will try your method this time.

  30. Champapa

    Proximity is an exellent intervention. Trying to behave opposite like you normally do (=yelling) will do wonders aswell: when my son (3y.o) misbehaves i tend to get his attention by using proximity and LOWER my voice. Works well when he’s agitated. Same way: yelling will work if the undesired behavior is more tranquil.

  31. Anne Rodriguez

    In fact everybody yells too much nowadays in very different situations, not only we yell at our kids but people are too loud, characters on tv show ( for kids) yell al the time, so everybody gets very noisy. We should all try to speak in a lower voice and then maybe not only the kids but other people would pay atention and react to what is being said. You’re toatlly right about getting closer, I’ve been using your strategy to come closer and avoid yelling with my kids and it does work! My home is so peacefuller when we’re not yelling, because if one starts yelling the others yell too! It’s hard work to control the ” yell habit” but it sure is worth it!

  32. Eileen s

    I agree with getting closer. I’m a recovering yeller, but I fall off the wagon regularly. I’m trying to divert the fighting kids with laughter or by muting myself. The kids have to smile or take the time to read my lips.

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      That is a great tip!

  33. Simple and powerful and true! Just loved it. May I translate it to Portuguese? I’m a teacher and write in a blog about children, I’d love to spread your idea… With all the credits… May I? Thank you so much!

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      You are welcome to translate one to two line and then link to my post for the rest of the article. Thank you!

  34. alicia

    It seems there is always a crisis to deal with when it comes to my three kiddos (6, 5 & 3 ) and they only arise when I am busy…thanks for this post (and all the commenters) addressing this dirty little secret….looking forward to trying this little tip!

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      Wonderful! I know the feeling. Want in on another dirty secret? I still yell. I try not too and like I say in the post, this works 90% of the time! Here’s to all of us trying!

  35. Kirsty

    Thank you, thank you, thank you! Finally a REAL strategy that isn’t flowery, the clearly works and that I can hopefully remember. Was feeling so frustrated that I couldn’t break this cycle, but forgetting that I need to take full responsibility for it myself. Here’s to a calmer household this summer!!

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      Here’s to a calmer summer! I hope to share more of my tiny PRACTICAL tips that I use to try to remember to stay calm too! 🙂

  36. I just had this realisation today, and what a much better day we all had!

    So glad to read this as it will solidify it in my mind…. Thank you for posting!

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      You are welcome! So glad this was helpful!

  37. Jane

    Great idea about getting closer ! Also heard this the other day and have tried it…take 3 deep breaths before responding …definitely creates the space! Told the kids we would all try it, so they at least know it as a tactic. If they see me stopping and breathing and taking a minute hoping they will eventually too!!

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      Love that tip! Thank you so much!

  38. Sometimes the best tips are the simple tips! Now if it was just as easy to do in the actual moment of frustration…. Thanks for the post and the great advice!

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      Absolutely! Thank you! I have to remind myself of these often.

  39. Kate

    Thanks for this article. I struggle with yelling and hate myself every time I do it. I will start with this technique first thing tomorrow morning. Thank you, I am sure that it will help!

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      Wonderful! I can’t wait to hear how it works out!

      1. Kate

        Hi Dayna

        Well, it is five months down the track and I often think of your blog post.

        I am VERY happy to report that I rarely raise my voice to my little ones and getting closer has been the catalyst for change that I needed. It works beautifully.

        I had been stuck in a “yelling” situation that I felt so guilty about but couldn’t seem to fix. Reminding myself not to shout at them, but to get close to them has been such a simple fix. It has enabled me to treat my children with the respect and consideration and compassion that they deserve and my house is so much more harmonious. This may sound melodramatic but your post has made a big difference in how I parent and how I feel about myself as a parent.

        I also spend a lot more of my time sitting on the floor playing trains!

        Thank you for your post, it really has made a difference.


  40. Ally

    Ugh.Yes. There are times with my the-year-old that yelling is the only way he hears me and listens! Sometimes he hears me and ignores me x even if in two feet away. (Other times it doesn’t matter where I am, he’s somewhere else mentally. I’ll say something to him and realize this, and then say him name until he snaps out of it. That one I get, at least). But when he sees me, hears me and just looks at me and ignores me, sometimes he’ll respond with a dinosaur sounds or something like that, and other things he just ignores me. That’s when I yell! I need to find another way, sigh.

    1. Ally

      That’s supposed to say three-year-old, sorry.

  41. YES! What an awesome, awesome post and so incredibly true! I am glad someone shared this post on my page – not just because this post is great but also because of the other content. I can’t wait to read the sensory section in entirety! I have found that a lot of the sensory activities I do to help my boys help me not yell.

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      I am ELATED to know that you read this!!!! I am so excited and to know that the other content on the site helps you and speaks to you! Please reach out to me, I would love to collaborate somehow in the future!!! Thank you for your kind words. I will hop over to your Facebook page and say “hi”

    2. Deb

      I loved this article, and immediately thought of Orange Rhino. I even did a Ctrl-F to find if someone had mentioned y’all and was so excited to see this comment. 🙂

      Getting closer today helped me a lot. A lot a lot! Thank you both (Orange and LemonLime)!

  42. ABP

    I definitely need to do this more. I’m not a teacher, but where it gets tricky or tough for me is that at home vs. a teacher at work is that I have a ton of different jobs. I have to prepare food for 2-3 meals per day, I have to tidy up/clean, I have to run errands, and I also have some computer work here and there. It is the constant interruption of a task that gets me. Sometimes I feel like I just can’t take it anymore and use shouting so I don’t have to, for the 134th time, drop what I’m doing. But I certainly can’t say that I’ve gotten ‘closer’ the previous 133 times so I will work on that today.

    Recently on the last 2 hour stretch of a 6 hour drive home when I missed an exit and my youngest refused to quit making noise after I’d asked him a few times, I felt I had no choice but to YELL. I needed it quiet 5 seconds ago in order to concentrate and keep from panicking about missing my exit. I couldn’t just pull over on a highway between exits, not an option. I also could not handle a single in-the-car sound until I get rerouted. *sigh* — I’m not sure what else I could have done when the YELL worked.

  43. Nicole

    I just imagine and constantlt think if someone else was in the house with me like my mom or in laws would I yell? How would I reactbin front of them. If I clearly picture that my tone and reaction.

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      That is a great tip and one I actually have in drafts right now 🙂

  44. ennyjay

    There IS a time and place for yelling– when you are in the loo and realize too late that there is no toilet paper! I really need to get a bell for this!

    In all seriousness though… I work in a daycare and the volume of the klds playing gets overwhelming!

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      Yelling for help (and that is a great reason for it 🙂 ) is different than the scream I sometimes do with my children. It is my goal to work to change that!

  45. I LOVE this tip. And your response to Marloes — I don’t think there is one silver bullet that will work in all situations, but being aware of a bunch of these options certainly improves the chances of becoming scream-free. And this is a simple yet effective trick. Thank you so much sharing.

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      Thank you so much for your kind words! Thank you for reading!

  46. Eric

    My experienced as a child in this matter, my father would always yell within seconds of his aggravation.
    It still had not changed 30 years later
    What I learned and will always make sure I follow through when my children are arguing, (to get closer) and talk to them individually. Find out both sides of the issue and come up with a way to settle the issue and hopefully everyone learns from it each time
    When I argued with my siblings, wether my dad was around or not, he would always immediately yell, always directed at me, never brother or sister.
    I like the idea of (to get closer) and discuss matters at hand.
    You don’t see police show up and start yelling at people and immediately arrest someone, they separate everyone, hear both sides of the story in a calm matter, then make a rational decision based on the stories. I hope this helps someone out there who finds themselves always yelling at one specific child without ever listening to what he’s/she’s thinking
    You don’t see police siat

  47. Hi! I enjoyed reading this . . . and it’s so true. Yelling is a bad habit, and quite honestly just lazy! It takes conscious effort to stop it, and this is a great reminder to me to step up as the parent and model right behavior for my kids. Awhile back I lost my voice, and noticed that my kids actually were more attentive and responded better when I had to whisper to them than when I yelled 🙂 Huh, seems backwards, but it’s not! Treat your kids with respect and they will often treat you with respect back.

  48. Lauren

    Thanks for this post!! I too am a yeller! Not sure how it happened. Growing up, my mom rarely yelled. I also went to school to be an elementary school teacher….just never ended up in the classroom. You’re so right about this tactic. I’m definitely going to try it out!!

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      Wonderful! I can’t wait to hear how it helps!

  49. This is such a good point! The biggest trigger for me to yell is when it’s close bedtime and the kids are cranky and I’m doing a few last minute things in the other room. They start pushing or poking each other and a fight breaks out… then I end up yelling at them to stop it.

  50. Kelly

    So glad I came across this today. I am exactly the same. I was a teacher, never yelled at my students, hardly ever had problems. Now that I stay at home, I find myself yelling, a lot. I was just thinking this same thing the other day. What is different? I am happy to see I am not the only one and I can simply fix it. I know how to fix it, but I can’t always seem to remember to do it. My new mantra is going to be, “get closer.” Thank you!

  51. Thank you so much for sharing these tips and experiences. It’s such an important thing to try not to yell and I hope that I manage it as a parent!

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      Thank you! I am glad you liked them.

  52. Amanda

    I hate yelling, and absolutely love this idea, I will certainly be giving it a go with my two boys. Thank You.

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      Wonderful! Be sure to let me know how it goes!

  53. I was also a teacher for 10 years and I find it amazing that I was able to keep hundreds of children in line without yelling and I can barely control my one 4 year old son! In my case, I can get a little lazy at home. Is it easier to yell or put the kid in a time out over and over again until he actually sits there like you see on The Nanny? Ha! Seriously, that is what I have been doing the last week. It takes 15-20 minutes for one 4 minute time out sometimes but the end result will be worth it!

    I didn’t mean to write a novel but I don’t want to be a yeller either (or a spanker). The easiest route isn’t always the best method or the one that works.

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      Thank you so much for sharing you story!

  54. Kellie

    Wow, thanks so much for the simple, yet profound reminder! I have really been down on myself for yelling so much lately at the kids. And it’s not effective at all! This simple tip is just what I needed.

  55. Karly

    Thank you for this post! I’ve been trying to define my triggers lately and understand myself more, because sometimes I’m the most patient mom there is, and other times I get so frustrated with such a small thing. Just today I started a new strategy. It can WAIT! This goes perfectly with what you just wrote, and confirms my thoughts all day. You have definitely added to my growth and personal reflection. Like you said, they aren’t listening to my yelling anyway! So what good does it do? If my hands are in soapy dishes or changing a stinky diaper, I’m going to get there when I get there, no matter what! So I had to realize that yelling hurt our connection and was virtually pointless. And…. added bonus here. By WAITING until I can get closer. I had to force myself to take a deep breath so I didn’t yell. I had to walk slowly so I didn’t yell. I was very conscious of every word and my tone of voice, because I knew I was on the verge. And it didn’t only stop me from yelling – it helped me problem solve with them and be creative instead of being rude or demanding or controlling! Yelling blinded me from all that. So just getting rid of the yelling allowed all other other good stuff to finally shine through! Thank you again. I felt a little hope this morning, and now after reading this I feel leaps ahead and ready to start again tomorrow!

  56. Nickole

    Hi. I love this. I’m crave more “simple” parenting fixes. Wow. I will be doing this today. Most of my yelling right now is when my 3.5 yr old is being rude and yelling at me or her brother (2 yr old). And I am usually right next to them. So at this stage, it’s the get down and try to stay calm to her, ask questions phase for me. What to do when she is yelling about what she wants or doesn’t want. Or on her case she tells things like, “I need another cookie and I won’t sit down until I get one!” I have never given in the threats or yelling requests. I try to stay calm, at some point….lately in the tub, when she is yelling and flailing around , kicking brother …is when I hear myself yell. I hate it. It feels like at the time the only way she will respond and listen. last night it was because she didn’t want her braid out…I was taking it out to wash her hair. The night before she didn’t want shampoo in her hair. I already had soap in and couldn’t just leave it. Sighhhh I could go on and on. I’m worked up at 6am now just typing it. Anyway, any tips would be so awesome. I want and strive to be a calm mom!!!thanks. N

  57. You are bang on! As a former early childhood educator, there are many things I would never dream of doing while caring for children yet for some reason I will do such things with my kids!

    I’m constantly reframing things and thinking… if I were at work, would this fly? If the answer is no, I stop it.

    Thanks so much for sharing.

    Pinning this post!

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      Thank you so much! I am so glad this hit home for you too! 🙂

  58. I don’t have kids but this is definitely a tip that I can use as an adult! The concept of moving closer allows you to take a pause as you are physically moving, ingenious!

  59. I’ve never tried this approach but will now! While reading your post I realized that, yes I always seem to be yelling to/at my kids from another room. Crossing fingers and toes that this will work….!

  60. Sarah

    My mom told me that when we were little and she got angry, she would tell herself “Look in their eyes.” I forget this sometimes. (Your post reminded me. Thank you.) I know that when I truly look… past the furrowed brow and dim light shining there, I see my baby and remember how vulnerable he is and how okay with that I am. When I’m okay with him being vulnerable (and not perfectly mannered, ordered, happy, etc.) then I become more resourceful and reach deeper into my bag of tricks to find something to share that he can add to his.

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      Thanks for sharing!

    2. Jenzy

      Yes, thank you! I need to remember this as well….

  61. Sarah

    My mom, who used to be a yeller (Turns out the apple doesn’t fall far!), told me that when we were little and she got angry, she would tell herself “Look in their eyes.” I forget this sometimes. (Your post reminded me. Thank you.) I know that when I truly look… past the furrowed brow and dim light shining there, I see my baby and remember how vulnerable he is and how okay with that I am. When I’m okay with him being vulnerable (and not perfectly mannered, ordered, happy, etc.) then I become more resourceful and reach deeper into my bag of tricks to find something to share that he can add to his.

  62. hope

    Thank you so much .you translate my feelings,i feel guilty,i hate my self for yelling,being close to them help me so much.

  63. Jenzy

    I am a yeller and I hate myself for it. I am going to start using this tactic today!! 🙂 Thank you…

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  67. Great post! And I completely agree. As a teacher I almost never yelled. And here I am at home with smaller children. Less children… and the shouting comes out! You’re right about proximity and I’m going to change that! 🙂 xx

  68. nsteah

    Thank you for this great post!

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  73. Shima

    I have noticed that sometimes my yelling happens when I’ve had a busy day with catching up with cooking, and feeding the kids and clean up and need to take the time to finally eat something to get my power back but my toddler seems to need me right then at the moment of faint and wants something I can’t quite understand and I keep telling him in gentle tone that mommy needs to eat too but he won’t listen and that’s when out of fatigue I find myself screaming at him occasionally. Then he just calms down and after I’m done I hold him and tell him mommy needed something too like you and we snuggle and it goes away of course but I wish there was a better way to deal with it than that.

  74. Jamie T

    I am a yeller .. I come from a family of yellers .. so I suppose it was inherited. .. I really dont want to be a yeller but no mattter how hard I try not to I always end up yelling. I read an article on peaceful parenting the other day and I said to myself I want to be a peaceful parent and I applied what I read to my parenting over the weekend and it worked some what however I found that if I dont yell to correct the matter then my husband steps up to the plate. I found myself correcting him as well as my son and that did not sit well with him. I am going to try this get closer tactic starting today and hopefully my husband will be on board but do u have ne suggestions if he is not and continues to use the yelling method and gets angry at me for correcting him?

  75. I love this – such a great tactic, and I know it works. I’d love to figure out a good modification for this that moms with chronic illness or mobility issues could employ. It’s those sick days when things seem to spiral out of control.

  76. Wendy

    My husband said, “I go to sleep!…….sometimes I yell in my sleep” lol!!!!

  77. Ben

    My wife and I have a disagreement in this area. I still fell sometime the kids need to be yelled at. While my wife wants to have a strict whisper. Or a weak command. The problem for her, if she starts to yell she gets very mad. While I yell and that is . My wife feels it is low class to yell. Come on, the kids are ripping the place apart and I am suppose to say ” hey kids please don’t do that.” While they look at you and laugh. With no worry of the fear of a spanking. And timeout to them is a joke. Or you get the one that has a memory of 10 seconds. Or hauling butt towards a busy road. I like the tips here and will try them. Really though for mental toughness, I think you still need to do some yelling. Otherwise they will have no true mental strength. My boys are loud as well.

  78. Tara Lara

    Great read. I am a big yeller and I absolutely hate it. My mother was a yeller/screamer and I never wanted to be like her. But when my 3 little ones (all under 3yo and in diapers) get out of hand, I tend to yell 🙁 I am going to try your suggestions first thing tomorrow. I’m confident your suggestions should help me stop yelling 🙂

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  80. Christina

    Sadly, I’m a yeller! So this has come at an important time for us. Tomorrow I start a new job, today my new turned 7 year old is not happy, her behavior is well, yes terrible but also understandable, I’ve been here for her after school and things are changing. Instead of yelling and yelling today, I spoke to her calmly and offering cuddles. I still sadly yelled this afternoon, but after reading this, I will try harder! I will try and stay calm and will go to them to speak instead of yelling! Thankyou it was a great read and I soooo needed these tips!

  81. Angel

    Yes, I have known this for a long time but it wasn’t until I read this that I remembered what I had already learned, THANK YOU. It’s funny thou, the littlest things that work we often forget and sometimes we just need someone to remind us, Thank You again, I will wright this in big writing and put it up where I can see and read it everyday 🙂

  82. Kortney Sanderson

    Hi. I just read this and I am I frequent yeller to my kids and I just know that its because of me that they have gotten attitudes from hell. And me yelling really doesn’t help at all, but make us all upset. I have a 6 year old son and a set of 5 year old twins (boy-girl) also with autism. And it really kills me that frankly I don’t know how to deal with them anymore. I feel as tho they don’t listen they don’t want to listen and they feel as tho they don’t have to. I absolutely love the idea of sitting all together and talking about things we as a family need to work on, and getting down to there level and comunicating with them. Please please let me know if there is anymore tips you may have. I appreate your honestly. Not a lot of Mommy’s want to admit there faults as parents. So thank you.

  83. Thanks for this critical message. I have 11 kids and completely agree that this is 100% effective. If you want children to exhibit self- control, you have to model it

  84. Dee

    Thank you for your wonderful advice. Would you think this would work with a two year old? Ever since I started working again when he was 2, ( he is 2 and 3 months now) he just became more hostile and angry, I try to talk to him,but sometimes i just lose it and yell out for him to stop hitting me, or not accepepting to get down from my shoulder. .. although I put in every effort to spend as much time as possible with him, but I do have two other children , a home to clean, cooking, and work to attend to??

  85. Hemavathi

    Hi Dear, good article I ever gone through. But I also looking for a more solution from you plz do help me out. My son is 3 years old, he doesn’t like to return ho

  86. Hemavathi

    Hello Dear, my son is 3 years old. He’s a kind of stubborn kid like he keeps crying with louder voice even on the road which is very embarrassing and we are scarred to take him out. As we are trying to convenience but he will not be in a position to listen to me or husband. I dont like yelling at him though….Can you plz plz help me and give me a solution. Your solution would make our life happy and peaceful. Thank you so much in advance!!!!

  87. Corinne

    I am a yeller and working on not being one. I have also tried using a quiet voice even when I am correcting them, and just taking a breath before I address bad behavior, break up a fight, or any other event that comes.

  88. Ashish Chandra Mishra

    Excellent article! Basically one would shout to make themselves heard when they are physically far away from each other. Subconsciously this continues to happen when they are mentally far away too. Shouting is avoided by moving closer to them physically, and is followed with mental closeness. The most beautiful part is that when you are extremely close, you don’t even need to speak, leave alone shout, to converse.

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  90. Julia Crenshaw

    Years ago I observed the *lack* of proximity I observed from friends and loved ones …just hollering at the kids instead if getting up and solving the problem face to face…and coined it “lead butt parenting.” Proximity, a teacher’s first trick, should be a parent’s as well.

  91. Absolutely love the Get Closer concept. Yes – it’s easy to think I’m not yelling, I’m just being loud enough to be heard in the other room. We can’t actually communicate with walls and hallways between us. Silly grown-ups!

  92. April B

    I’m a YELLER and I HATE it! I really feel foolish after I blow up! Thanks for writing this…I will be trying this today! I might have to put #getcloser signs all over my house as a reminder!!!! 🙂

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  94. this is so true, and effective! I use this in my classroom and at home as well. Thanks for sharing. My other favorite teacher trick is setting the stage prior to the happening. It’s so easy to forget, but having a simple, maybe one minute conversation about expectations makes life run much smoother. And I’m talking at the most mundane things – like, “remember, your sister is the first person out of the car.”

  95. Marina

    Great post. Found it on my mom friends wall but reading it to deal with 30 year old partners on a creative project! And advice still works. I’m getting frustrated with their behavior bc I’m not interacting with them enough to understand it (forget the part momentarily that I shouldn’t have to treat them like children that came out of my own womb). Thanks!!!! 🙂

  96. I will most definitely try as I am tired of hearing my voice….. and honesltly about to book into some asylum somewhere!!!

  97. Thank you for this, I a constantly hearing my self yell or moaning at the kids….. almost booked into a mental home 🙂

  98. Elle Diaz

    I just read this post and all I can say is “Thank you, thank you, thank you! ” I can see where getting closer would work with my children. I will try it today.

  99. So… I am studying to be a teacher and this is exactly what I do when I’m in the classroom. I love the idea of transitioning this into my everyday life. I never yell or raise my voice except at very specific people – the people I love the most. This is unfortunate and I end up feeling awful every time I do it. This specifically happens with my fiancé. He will be reading over my shoulder for the millionth time (a pet peeve he knows about) or arguing with my roommate or picking apart my sentences and I will suddenly loose my cool and yell at him. This also happens with my little sister. I know this post is aimed at relationships will children, but do you have any idea about how to curb my yelling problem with adult relationships? I’m a quiet person normally, but it’s with the people I love the most that I resort to yelling just to be heard…

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  101. Erica

    This is helpful and It’s a real struggle when you have so much to do as a mom and wife, and at then end of the day many days I have yelled at my daughter for not listening , for throwing a tantrum whatever it may be and I wonder to myself .. Does she hate me? Does she go to bed and think “all my mom does is yell at me?” It’s so hard. We love our kids so damn much and we have the hardest job in the world in sooo many ways, time demanding, self neglecting, emotional, physical, mental and so much more .. We so easily become the bad guy because lose our shit once in awhile. It’s hard. And I do think it’s a struggle for many moms!

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  103. What a wonderful post and what a brilliant idea. I’m sick of hearing my own voice some days and yelling just doesn’t work, does it? Will try putting this in practice. x

  104. Lauren

    I would like more practical tips on how to IMPLEMENT this tactic. I know it’s the right thing. But I think the reason I, and s many others, fail to do this is because we are overwhelmed.

    I’m a stay at home mom (actually I work from home very very part time) and i have a 1 year old, a 3.5 year old, and an almost 6 year old. My middle child in particular is a handful and needs near constant intervention.

    I find it difficult to “get closer” SO MANY TIMES all day long. For example- everyone is hungry and I’m trying to make a meal. The baby is teething and fussy and I”m holding and possibly nursing the baby.Meanwhile my other two are fighting and if I physically intervene I could get the baby hurt. So that would mean leaving the clingy upset baby to cry to fix the issue, which could take a long time (meanwhile hits and kicks abound while I try to calm everyone down). And, now it’s taken even longer to make a meal and everyone is melting down because they are hungry.

    So, there are so many times I just yell because there are so many things to me to do all at once that are all important. What do I do? Yes, it’s good to make sure the kids are fed before they are hungry, for example, but life is so chaotic with little ones sometimes it doesn’t happen.

    These scenarios all day long. We are overwhelmed. We are tired. And we despair. No choice seems “right” because there are cons all around. Not to mention we are exhausted and don’t want to get up again for the 50th time.

    I know most of us deal with this difficult situations on a daily basis. How do we “Get closer” in a realistic way, when everything is going wrong? Is it okay to ignore one or more children to deal with another? Etc?

    Thanks 🙂

  105. Sarah

    Have you ever tried YL Peace & Calming oil to help your home? We’re just starting with it now. I appreciate your suggestions, thank you 🙂

  106. Erin

    Oh, my goodness! Thank you so much for this. I am a yeller and I HATE it! It’s not me, at least it’s not the me I want to be. I have tried and tried to let it go, but it always creeps back. I was a daycare worker for nearly a decade and never had to do that, so why in my own home, with my own children? Again, thank you so much for this great reminder. And I plan to check out the essential oils as well!

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  108. My grandma was a teacher for many many years, and I watched her deal with kids when I would visit her classroom. She always moved close to talk to them quietly and respectfully. She did the same with me when I was little and does the same with my kids at her house. I am a work-in-progress, because the first instinct is to get frustrated and lose it (why is that?). Thank you for the reminder to get closer. It is so important!

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  110. Atig

    My 4 year child has a very poor observation even he didnt notice things around him.Please guide me how to improve this.

  111. Mini

    I am guilty about the yelling part too…Thank you soooo much for the tips…..you nailed it!. Hours before I read this…I was having a chat with my almost 9 yr old and 71/2 yr old…just casual things about how they did in school and things of that nature..and I was surprised at myself of how calmly I talked and both of them sat around to listen what I had to ask.( I was very tired after an almost 10 hr shift at my retail store)..yet they listened and we discussed and now when i read this article I feel air of peace in me…this is how it should work. I need to remind myself every time I am around them..No more yelling!(psst..even though I knew it was wrong). And sometimes I blame myself for having failed my children..but hey we don’t come with instructions :-)..there will be a silver lining…..Thank you once again!!

  112. casey

    My voice naturally goes up whwn im excited and frustrated so I am trying to remember to listen to my own voice and try to keep it lower then what I want to make it. It is half way working since ive only been doing it a couple days. I also notice I get really loud when I think they might get hurt so I need to figure out something else.

  113. My daughter is grown (21) and I never was a yeller raising her. Now she is a single mom to a 2 and 3 year old and I stay with them to help her out.
    Maybe it’s my old age (or older age lol) but I’m finding my patience is so elusive many days. I find myself raising my voice and yes, even yelling, many days and many times a day.
    I am going to try your method and I’m praying it works! I really do hate to yell. 🙁
    Her 2 yr old little boy screams a lot too and it’s high pitched – when he’s excited, upset, for no reason lol – and really goes right to my core and hurts my ears, my shoulders actually hunch!
    Any tips on curbing that behavior? I would love some ideas for that.

    Thanks for the great info.

  114. Jeanie

    I have 5 kids, plus have been a foster parent. Similar resolution is to whisper to get the attention of your children. They must gather closely to hear you, and it is very calming. A peaceful home is the best goal!

  115. Lynn Adams

    I’m wondering if this will work on my husband. I yell at him, he yells at me.

    No, I’m serious! I’ll let you know what happens….

  116. Firts I totally agree with u I also among you but new trick I use is I made a chart of the month and each day I make a dot of green n red green denotes good behavior and red denotes bad behavior and I told ma kids end of the month green count more will receive the gift so now they has to decide want gift and also told them respecting is the best reward to parents so do think when they fought and this way I also stop yelling

  117. Brittany

    This came at such a perfect time after the day we had yesterday! Thank you for the great suggestion. It was nice reading all the comments and being able to relate to so many other teachers/moms, glad to know I’m not the only one struggling!

  118. This is such good advice but at the same time, so hard to implement. Especially if you’ve got more than one child and sometimes you really ARE occupied with another. With my 5 kids, I would be like a pinball bouncing around from child to child all day if I could totally implement this!

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  122. jules

    Is there any tips on handling when your 9 year old boy likes to dump things out like body wash or spray your hairspray in the toilet? Lol. I’ve tried grounding and taking away video games and everything. I’ve even tried staying calm and talking to him but he still does these things behind closed doors.

    1. Lemon Lime Adventures

      Have you tried sensory bins? You can use a large tupperware container and give him materials that are “okay” for him to dump and pour. This is a very normal developmental thing for children to want to do. Giving him a safe place to do it could allow him the boundaries he needs.

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  124. Ruma Munim

    Thank you for your article, i will definately try this, i have two boys 5 & 2 and lately i have been yelling at them so much to listen and behave that they end up laughing at me, on the other hand they are fine with their dad, this has started to make me upset and now i find myself not evan giving my kids a smile on a good day.

  125. Rozel

    i have been yelling at my 2 kids aged 4&7 , and i feel so bad for doing so. I try so hard not to yell , but before time im doing it again . I have now gone through your advice list and i will definitely try it. I will actually do anything at this stage. I am a single Mother so things are even harder at times. Thanks for the advise , appreciate it .
    Kind regards

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  133. Until I read your post I thought I was just not a yeller and I had easy going kids, but turns out it was all just a trick. I have a naturally quiet voice, so if I need my kids to do something or to stop doing something I would just always get up and get close to their level, so they would pay attention and they do. Being close really works!

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  138. karolina

    Great advice! I’ll definitely try to do it from now on and I already know It’s gonna work.
    Sometimes (on a good day 🙂 I remind myself why they are jumping, shouting, arguing and running around like mad – because they CAN. They are healthy, energetic, happy and sociable kids. So if I am not totally worn out i try to stop and just smile to them and do it with them. at some stage being an adult got realy realy boring so now I am beginning to learn from the kids how to be spontanous and giggly again:) and definitely that means getting closer!

  139. This works! You’re so right! Plus, I like the fact that I can get them to look at me and focus on me. I think that helps. Thank you so much for the reminder. I’m a teller and hate it. One of my resolutions for this year is to work on this. Thanks! 🙂

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  145. Raven

    This post is very helpful my mom was a yelled so now I’m kinda terrified of doing that to my kids. One of the things we try in our house is a yelling tax. If it is not an actual emergency or within a designated yelling zone with aproval of everyone then the person yelling gets taxed, doesn’t matter if it’s me, my partner, my brother, LilLil or LiBit the person will get taxed. Thank you so much for giving me some more tools to help my household

  146. Great tips! I think even people who wouldn’t classify themselves as “yellers” lose their cool from time to time. If I feel myself at this point I have started walking away for a moment and counting to myself. Sometimes it is to ten and sometimes it might take to 30. Ha ha. If I give myself a pause it helps me to remember what my goal is. Discipline is about teaching not reacting or just stopping a particular behavior. That, I tell myself over and over.

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  149. I recently applied this same principle to my marriage. Get closer.

    When my hubby walks into a room, I close the distance with a smile and try to greet with him with a kiss. It’s made a huge difference for our marriage.

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  151. yep, I’m a yeller too. I hate it, and I graduated with a bachelor’s degree in child development, and i still yell, all the time. This is a great idea. I hope I can actually remember to do it… 😉

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  153. As a widowed mom of three I feel like that’s all I’ve done the past 7 yrs. Never at the kids in class though. I guess my X kids need me but when I get home I’m just so tired and have to do all that work too. Gonna try this and hope it’s not too late!! Thanks

  154. Thank you for this great article!

    I would just add one thing – be the change you want to see
    This is not a cliché or some marketing slogan you see with green peace. Read that again and read it outloud .Be the change you want to see. Personalize it, say ‘I am the change I want to see’. In other words, take responsibility
    This one simple step will guarantee your success as a parent, I can say that with confidence because it is the foundational quality of any form of success whether it is in the home or otherwise. I won’t go into a long discourse on this. Think about that for a few minutes and as you read it a few more times on the screen you will start to appreciate the truth within that statement.

    1. Sheila Ballinger

      How true. Thank you!

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  156. Sheila Ballinger

    When my granddaughter 10 1/2 yr. old, whom we have raised since she was practically born is upstairs, I contact her on her ipod to try to tell her something instead of “yell” up the stairs, which now that I read this brings to mind that she is more happy to accommodate than when I “yell” upstairs. I have a hard time getting up our stairs sometimes and sometimes I just don’t feel like going up the stairs just to tell her supper is ready or time for shower and then go straight back down. This works much better than “yelling” up the stairs. I will remember this article and start going upstairs if she doesn’t respond with her ipod. She is a terrible yeller as well, and I’m sure it is probably a “learned” behavior from me that we are trying to stop now. But I can’t expect her to stop if I’m still yelling. Thank you for this helpful information.

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  158. i usually get anger when my kids doesn’t listen to me. Thanks for sharing the tips. I will try for sure.

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