Angela’s February 2014 Letter

Dear Friends,

Our “brain rule” (following Dr. John Medina’s bestseller, Brain Rules) for the month of February was “Attention.” As I sit at my laptop working on this letter, I have my desktop computer close by waiting for email responses from my graduate students at Chapman University. We all multitask our day with oodles of things visually passing our eyes. However, research tells us that multitasking is not as good as it seems. But with all of the daily distractions, taking time to focus on one thing is hard to do. We need to slow down and focus on one thing for a minute or two to really grasp the meaning or to just be in the moment. I love when I see signs for “mindfulness.” Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn, national speaker and researcher, states, “mindfulness is paying attention in a certain way, on purpose, in the present moment, and nonjudgmentally.”

At Friends of Brain Injury (F.B.I.) on Tuesday nights, we learned to slow down and to focus on one thing at a time. Dr. David Levy, vascular neurosurgeon and author of Gray Matter, spoke one evening on his routine to prepare himself for neurosurgery. He informed us that hydration, good clean food and exercise help him maintain focus for a 5-8 hour surgery on the brain. We learned about breaking down simple things so one can master Suduko easily. It is challenging to only focus on one thing without conversations in your head to do other things like laundry or checking your email. We need to disconnect once in the while, smell the coffee (or tea), look around and just be grateful for being alive, breathing, and living in the moment. We can never go backwards in life so we must put our feet firmly on the ground and make decisions that are not rushed but well thought out. I read that our feet face forward for a reason. So take that step into the month of March and we will begin our next “brain rule” for the month ­– “Exploration.”

I hope to see you on any given Tuesday.


Angela Mandas, MA CCC-SLP

Speech Language Pathologist

F.B.I. Group Facilitator

One Comment

  1. Hi Amanda,

    What an informative letter. So glad you shared about focusing on one thing and taking the time to appreciate where we are ‘right now’ and seeing God’s blessings before us. Foregoing multi-tasking sure has its rewards.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *