- to restart (a computer) by loading the operating system; boot again.
- to produce a distinctly new version of (an established media franchise, as a film, TV show, video game, or comic book)
- to make a change in (something) in order to establish a new beginning
It wasn’t too long ago that the word “reboot” was not in our dictionary let alone a common word used in daily life. The typical use refers to turning a computer off and on to reset the operating system. Have you ever wondered why turning on a computer is called a “boot”? From HOW STUFF WORKS, When you first power up a PC, the machine goes through several internal processes before it’s ready for you to use. This is called the boot process or booting the PC. Boot is short for bootstrap, a reference to the old adage, “Pull yourself up by the bootstraps,” which means to start something from the very beginning. The use of the word I want to talk about is the third definition from above; To make a change in something in order to establish a new beginning.
There are a variety of ways we can affect a “do-over” in our lives. The one that comes to mind first for me is to take a vacation. Hopefully, you take time at least once a year to disconnect from work and reboot. Mary and I love to cruise. It’s an easy way to get away from the stresses of life and to visit places we’ve never been. Recently we went on our first riverboat cruise that started in Vienna and visited several ports along the iconic Danube River over 11 days. With the uncertainty of my diagnosis, we’ve had to reevaluate our priorities and make more room for travel which is an excellent way to reboot.
We’ve been on several ocean cruises but the thought of meandering down the Danube on a riverboat brought visions of a relaxing trip. On the contrary, this cruise line included a variety of excursions at every port. Human nature dictates we get the most for our money so instead of a leisurely trip on a river whilst sipping a fine wine, we were out touring ports in Vienna, Bratislava, Salzburg, Passau, and Budapest almost every day! Vacations are a great way to get us out of our routine and recharge our physical and emotional batteries.
Another reboot is to change jobs. Obviously, this not as relaxing as a vacation but if a new job can provide career advancement, better revenue, and more agreeable work conditions then the result can be a personal reboot. I remember when I changed insurance careers back in 1996 from a senior product agency to Aflac management and how the negative issues I had been dealing at the agency were replaced with a renewed sense of excitement and optimism. This reboot made a huge difference in our lives for many years. Keep in mind that a change in career is one of the top stressors in life so for that and other reasons, you might want to think this through carefully.
At some point or another, we have all felt that a current relationship is holding us back or not going where we want it to go. Sometimes we make that decision and sometimes the person we are with makes the decision for us. Either way, a change in relationship is a redo and one that can create a great deal of stress as well. Mary and I had been married before and we both spent several years single before we found someone who was a good fit. Truthfully, neither of us had a romantic interest in the other when we met but after several months, doing things as friends, it became obvious that our meeting was a divine appointment! Again, this reboot can cause a great deal of stress and requires much thought. As with most decisions, it takes time to make the right one.
How do you know when a reboot is successful? Here are three ways that I know I have rebooted effectively:
Clarity – I find that a good reboot always puts things in better perspective. Sometimes I get so tied up dealing with whatever I’m dealing with that my priorities get messed up. A reboot can break my preoccupation with the status quo and open me up to new ideas and solutions.
Excitement – When I give myself a chance to start over, I can overlook my mistakes and focus on new projects, new goals, and new destinations. A reboot leaves me feeling like Christmas morning as I anticipate the day with new optimism.
Wisdom – I have a theory that each of us can only store so much information in our brains and to make way for new data, we have to delete useless junk. You see, it’s like my iPhone 7. It can only store 32 GB and when it gets close to full, I have to get rid of apps, songs and photo’s I don’t use any more. Rebooting allows us to learn new lessons.
As we approach 2019, I suspect many of my readers may be thinking about making changes to improve their careers, relationships and life in general. Take time to evaluate how they will impact your clarity, excitement, and wisdom.
Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
“Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!” 2 Corinthians 9:15