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The Frustration of Lost Data

If each leaf is a data point that I depend on, the wind is my enemy.

It Happened a Couple of Weeks Ago

I was writing newsletter articles in an airplane. And was working offline.

I normally type directly into a newsletter template online. But I couldn’t since I was in a plane. So I had the idea to overwrite one of my old newsletter articles sitting in my inbox and save it as a draft.

Then I could copy the text to the online template when I got home.

This Worked Great for the First Article

But when I finished the second article, I realized that I had overwritten the entire first article. After writing two articles, I had only one to show for it!

I immediately got flushed and hot sitting there in my airplane seat. And started feeling helpless.

So I pulled out a Judge-Your-Neighbor Worksheet and started writing my thoughts about my computer, even though I knew it was really an operator error. That didn’t stop me from being mad at the computer.

Here’s What I Wrote

1. I am shaking with anger at my computer because it lost my newsletter.

2. I want it to give it back. I want it to tell me ahead of time the way it works. I want it to have compassion on me. I want it to not waste my time.

3. It should give a warning if I’m overwriting something. It should make it clear that I’m overwriting the old article. It should have a backup.

4. I need it to return my newsletter to me.

5. My computer is a thief, cruel, a nuisance.

6. I don’t ever want to have my hard work destroyed again.

It Was Amazing How Much Better I Felt

Just writing those thoughts down in the moment when it happened, got it off my chest. I love having a way to have a tantrum on paper without hurting anyone or anything.

My shaking disappeared. I felt like I had been heard.

I still haven’t even worked the worksheet. But I notice more tolerance for other computer glitches since then.

It’s As If I Worked It

And I still plan to work it. But just writing the worksheet with the intention to question what I wrote, opened something for me.

Later, I rewrote the article, and it turned out even better the second time. I look forward to seeing what more I can learn when I actually work the worksheet.

Have a great week,

P.S. Whew! I just remembered to hit the save button. 🙂

“Inquiry is more than a technique: It brings to life, from deep within us, an innate aspect of our being. When practiced for a while, inquiry takes on its own life within you. It appears whenever thoughts appear, as their balance and mate.” — Byron Katie, Loving What Is

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Todd Smith has been doing The Work of Byron Katie on an almost daily basis since 2007. He is just as excited about this simple process of self-inquiry today as he was when he first came across it. He also enjoys writing about The Work, and training others in the subtleties of this meditative process. Join Todd for The Work 101 online course, private sessions, virtual retreats, and his ongoing Inquiry Circle group.