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Communication Matters

February 2015    Issue 80                   

Life is Lived "Forwards" and Understood "Backwards"        
In This Issue
TELL US YOUR STORYFeatured Article
Business  Woman Lecturing

If you are a foreign born professional, we would like to hear from you. We are very interested in the story of how you are overcoming self-doubt and learning new skills.

We would be happy to feature your story in a future issue.
trOur Mission is to help our clients transform their accents from a communication barrier to a charming cultural flavor using "listener friendly" speech that is as close to Standard English as possible for them. 


Order Mastering Meaning from or today online. The price is  reduced from $19.99 to $10.00 + S & H and applicable sales taxes.   


We help our  clients make smart choices to achieve their goals.
Go to our Archive Home Page to read more fascinating newsletters.

  Triangle Speech Services is the private, professional practice of Judith L. Bergman, a licensed speech-language pathologist (SLP) who specializes in foreign accent and regional dialect modification and related communication skills. I offer customized, individual tutorials to corporate-sponsored and self-enrolled individuals who speak English fluently but with moderate to severe accents that create challenges and frustrations in the workplace.

  The title of this issue is a paraphrase of these words written by Kierkegaard, the Danish existentialist philosopher: "Life can only be understood backwards, but it must be lived forwards." Lynn Underwood PhD. offers this quote in her book Spiritual Connection in Daily Life (p.82) in her discussion of blessings in disguise, blessings that are buried in more superficial problems.   

  The incessant forward movement of life's regular activities suddenly comes to a halt in a weather emergency.  If you were  "ice-bound" today (Tuesday, February 24) along with the rest of your family, then you were fortunate not to be among the many drivers who had traffic accidents.  You had to reschedule meetings. You did some work from home. Did you spend time away from a computer or smart phone screen?  Perhaps you "made time" to take a few pictures of your young children and pets playing outside in the fluffy show or found another excuse to get out, sweep off the steps and take a walk around your property.     

 Here's one family "celebrating" a snow day and not worrying about missed deadlines and delayed projects.
    Another gift of unexpected time off is the opportunity to reflect on your resilience, your ability to cope with and learn from challenges.
   My clients who are non-native English speakers, tell me about their initial shock when they arrived in the U.S. thinking they "knew" English, and couldn't understand fluent,"run-on" conversations.  After a time, they were able to sort out most of the meanings but almost daily, hear idioms and other "expressions" that make no sense.  Their second big shock comes almost immediately and that is when they know exactly what they are saying, when they can "see" the printed word in English, but their speech is not easily understood by American friends and colleagues.
    Did you experience these challenges? How have you coped with them? How have you handled the challenges of initial job interviews that are conducted over the telephone?   

Life is Not A Solo Flight
Ms. Bergman and Japanese Client
   In his book, Thank God It's Monday, Tim Hoerr writes, ""Our personal purpose is always enriched and influenced by others. Life is not a solo flight. We're on the planet to interact with others in meaningful relationships, with the intent to accomplish something and to make the world a better  place."
   "You are the one that must make the choices that determine your destiny." (p. 45)
   Enrolling in an intensive, customized and individual accent modification training program should be a careful and serious decision. We are serious when we state the practice requirement of one hour, five days a week minimum. We have reduced our caseload greatly in order to devote time to providing daily, recorded feedback to clients using the online practice program in addition to working in person with us twice a month.  Most clients begin to show impressive gains in natural, fluent sounding English and stable corrections of accent features right from the beginning. A few, in our ten years of specializing in this area, have "talked a good talk" i.e. promised to practice and work hard,and then stopped practicing and dropped out of the program with no notice to us!
   We're here to help our clients achieve their goals and we work to develop a supportive coaching relationship. However, each person has to use this help and then do the work himself or herself.                
   We invite you to click on Triangle Speech Services  to visit our informative website. Our goal is always to provide information, inspiration and encouragement since these are essential components of any successful learning experience.
  If you are seriously considering enrolling yourself or an employee in an individual tutorial with us or simply want to talk to us about our programs, please contact us through the contact page of our web site


Judith L. Bergman M.A. CCC-SLP
Speech-Language Pathologist and Corporate Speech Trainer
Founder & Director of Triangle Speech Services