It is funny how many analogies apply in our everyday lives. There are things we hear each day that can relate to so many aspects in our lives, yet we are blind to it. Having worked in technical support for a number of years, I have asked the question we all hate to hear about a billion times, “have you tried powering off and back on?” Previously when I asked this, I would cringe as I awaited the witty response of a customer who has tried this on their device for the tenth time that day. As consumers, we may roll our eyes and think to ourselves, “here we go, a number of questions and tasks that are not going to get us anywhere!” I know that we have all been there at one point or another.

So why is it that we hate to hear this question so much? Is it because we feel like the rep we are talking to is just reading from a script and is not truly listening to us? Is it because we feel as if this is so obvious and we are somewhat insulted by the fact we were even asked? Is it because it has become a cliché of sorts and we believe that it is not going to do a damn thing?

So if companies and tech support reps know that this question drives people crazy, why do we ask it? The answer is simple. Because it works. As much of a cliché we think it is, as much as we may expect this to be asked, and as much as we hate to hear it, it works. The funny thing is that it applies to our lives (financial and otherwise) just as much as it applies to our devices.

Why Do I Need to Power Cycle?


As we go through our lives and complete our daily routines, things become so monotonous. We wake up, do the same tasks, travel the same routes and interact with the same people each and every day.

Our minds, just like our computers and our phones, fill up with information, some of which is useful and much of which is useless. We start to focus on the daily routines and slowly lose our sight on the goals we set for ourselves. We start to replace our life goals with the goal of just trying to make it through the day. Our memory becomes fragmented as we try to manage our finances, our schedules and our lives.

Just as with our electronics, the more and more we use our minds without rest and the more and more we make changes to our lives, the slower we begin to process things and the more stressed we become. We start to lose sight of what is important; we start to forget what we are working for; we start to put ourselves on autopilot through this thing we used to call life.

When we power off our electronics, the memory refreshes, the buildup of temporary files is cleared and when we power on again it is like a complete refresh of the system. Our minds work the same way. The trouble is that unlike our cell phones, our computers and our tablets, there is no 1-800 number we can call. Instead, what we need to do is perform a complete power cycle of ourselves.

As with many of us, there was a period in my life that I hit a low point. I was not happy with myself, I was not happy with the situation I was in and I was just going through the motions of life and not really living it. It was certainly a depressing time and a rough time for my wife as well. My self-esteem was extremely low, my relationships with others started to fade and my finances became a mess. So what did I do? How did I escape this daily task of floating on by? Power cycle.

How Do I Power Cycle?

One of the big problems with falling into this mindset is that many times you don’t even know you’re there. When I was at this point, my wife had told me so many times, but I was stuck and not able to find the power button. I did not know what to do. Then one day, it was a sign…literally. I woke up one morning and slowly walked into the living room like a zombie with a bad hangover. The first thing I noticed was a simple 3 word phrase that my wife wrote on our daughter’s whiteboard easel. It simply said “Do something different”.

It was right then, that single moment in time, with those three little words that my power button was switched off and back on again. I realized that I had been living a life that I did not want to live because of the mindset I had. I never knew just how much it was effecting me and my family.  Just like the computer or the cell phone, my mind was refreshed. As each day passed, I repeated to myself “do something different”. The great thing was that this simple thought allowed me to power cycle my mind each day and see things with more clarity. So how do I power cycle? If something is not working or I feel stuck in a routine that I can’t escape, I remind myself (sometimes a reminder from my wife) to do something different. It is incredible how much power a simple phrase can have.

So Where Do I Go From Here?

The next time you feel overwhelmed by your finances, your situation, your job or your life, find the power button. Ignore the fact that “power off and power back on” has become such a cliché and just try it. What is the worst that can happen? Do something different. Step out of the routine. As soon as you step out, you can look at the big picture and get a better vision of what it is that needs to be fixed. And once you do this and see how effective power cycling can be for your mind and spirit, it is amazing how much more clearly your vision will become. With this vision, you can continue to work on your goals and to get to where you want to be.

When was the last time you power cycled? What was it that allowed you to see it was needed? Where did it take you? Please comment below. I can also be reached directly via email at or on Facebook or Twitter @defeatingnormal.

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