Angela’s September 2017 Letter

Dear Friends,

Angela Mandas, MA CCC-SLP

Can we live without technology? Technology enables the brain injury survivor to express thoughts not heard as words that cannot be uttered due to decreased breath support. We need technology.  We need it in hospitals, businesses and offices. We rely on the speed of computers to send messages to family across the continent. We need it to contact people quickly. We respond to Facebook when someone announces a pregnancy or a milestone birthday. However we become dependent on using technology instead of standing up and walking over to the office mate down the hall. Text messaging has replaced phone calls. Daily relationships are sometimes built around texting as a convenience. Conversation and the art of sitting with someone to get to know them has gone by the wayside.

However, at F.B.I., we are “Disconnecting to Reconnect.” We agree to turn off the cell phone while we talk, share, support and laugh. No LOL here! We have been focusing on listening and not interrupting, hearing without judging, and building up without breaking down each other’s confidence and pride. There is a sense of family at F.B.I. in which we develop ground rules for respect when someone is sharing and when someone speaks. Along with these rules, an agreement has been established with each person who attends the weekly meeting to set measurable and attainable goals. Being a spectator at F.B.I. is allowed, but being an active participator is highly preferred. We all need to set measurable and attainable goals from wanting to clean out the garage to wanting to strengthen the body. We move forward in life. It’s not easy to determine a realistic goal but even reducing computer game time can be measured. We build, we grow and we do life together at B.R.A.I.N.

Hope to see you at our weekly sessions; remember to turn off your phone and connect with others.


Angela Mandas, M.A. CCC-SLP

F.B.I. Group Facilitator


Ideas for Unplugging

Taken from Unplug Every Day; 2014 Chronicle Books

1. Wear a watch instead of relying on your phone.
2. Learn to recite a poem from memory.
3. Use a wall calendar to keep track of appointments.
4. Send a thank you note and mail it using a stamp.
5. Find a cafe without wifi and talk to someone next to you.
6. Make something with your hands; Allow yourself to learn and fail and don’t seek the answers on the internet.
7. Organize a closet, drawer or your bedroom instead of your work space.
8. People watch at a coffee shop or on a park bench.
9. Take a walk and turn your phone off.
10. Call a friend, just to catch up.