Tuesday, March 22

Refresh, reboot, reset: The new year cometh

In 10 days my company will celebrate its new fiscal year.  Yes, on April 1.  When I first started here, I thought it was an amusingly perverse day to start a fiscal new year.  To some extent, I still do.  April Fool's Day?  Well, it's the day after the quarter and there's not much anyone can do about that.

I don't have any history on why our fiscal year ends on March 31.  I'm quite certain there's a rationale.  It makes this time of year really crazy for us and differently so than for others.  But I've decided I like this April 1 New Year.

By this time, if I've made any resolutions, they are in shambles and tatters by this time of year.  So this gives me a way to refresh, reboot, and reset yet again.

Here in the Chicagoland area, March is an unpredictable weather month.  Warm, cold, wet, snowy.  April, while it may not yet be more predictably springlike, is that much closer to spring.  And yes, it's hard not to consider the Easter-like metaphor of renewal while I'm thinking about refreshing, rebooting, and resetting.

I readily acknowledge I may need another "new year" or two throughout the calendar year and even this fiscal year.  It's just that having a new year state of mind at this time of year is that much more energizing and, yes, hopeful.

Hope.  We know there are plenty of morality tales or fables about hope, but hope is what helps keep us going no matter how large or small, how tragic or seemingly inconsequential our situations.  My desire to have a new year's fresh start feeling cannot be equated to those who are emerging from tragedy and forced to start anew.  Yet their resilience and determination, while putting my situation in perspective, also reminds me that I have no excuse.

I cannot and will not compare my situation to those in Japan and elsewhere.  But they remind me that if they can refresh, reboot, and reset in the midst of their incredibly difficult situations, then I have no reason not to be more optimistic about my own potential to refresh, reboot, and reset, and to strive to do and be better, not just on April 1 when I mark a symbolic new year, but every day.

So I was going to say that hope enables us to move forward after we have refreshed, rebooted, and reset. . . and yes, I do hope we learn from our mistakes.  But then I realized I don't want to move forward.  Moving forward is making some sort of progress so that I move from where I am to somewhere else along life's number line, perhaps an inch, perhaps a few feet.  No, I want to say that hope enables us to grow in  a variety of ways.  In that sense, refreshing, rebooting, and resetting is like pruning.  Perhaps painful, but necessary if there is to be new growth, hopeful, bursting with energy and determination.

While you may not celebrate a new year on April 1, I hope you will realize that if your resolutions are shattered and crumpled, all is not lost.  If your determination to do whatever seems to have faltered, there is yet hope.  Think of your refreshing, rebooting, resetting as a sort of pruning and allow yourself the hope and opportunity to bloom afresh and anew.

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