I need help with my addiction to the backspace key.
March 8, 2012 11:48 AM Subscribe
Habitually editing while I write, want to try free-writing and getting it all out, having difficulty: can I temporarily disable my backspace key in Microsoft Word?
posted by NikitaNikita to Writing & Language (22 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
I constantly microedit while I write, and it has gotten to the point that it is super, super annoying. When I try to, say, set a timer and free-write to get ideas onto the page, I end up backspacing to chose a better word and see how that looks there, then think, "Hmm, no, maybe this one...? Hmm, no... *backspace backspace*..." over and over again, to the point that I end up having written zilch in 30 minutes+. Not sure how/why this habit has gone into overdrive right now but it is driving. me. crazy. And seriously delaying my work. I think indecisiveness and a lack of self assuredness/self-confidence in my writing plays a part. And it's THAT strong that I can't stop reach for the backspace key.
The other day the habit was driving me so crazy that I actually tried to pry the backspace key off the keyboard in frustration, thinking I could pop it back on later. Not only is it really, really stuck on there such that I couldn't get it off, but, since I don't know how easy it would be to get it back on, even if I did pop it off, this is probably a bad idea to potentially destroy work property.
So I'm wondering if there's a way to temporarily disable my backspace key in Word, to prevent or at least make me aware of my reflexive backspacing habit. For this current case: this is a work computer (PC - looks like MS Word/Office Prof. 2010), and I'm probably limited in installing new software. However, I welcome ideas for my home computer (Mac - MBP) too! I don't know much about coding and macros, so if it involves that, some hand-holding-y detail would help too. Otherwise, all is game: disabling its function, assigning loud beeps, delivering punishing electric shocks,....
Thank you in advance from me and my sad abused keyboard.
(fwiw, the backspacing issue wasn't as bad while I typed this post (because, see? text!), BUT it was definitely present/an issue -- I think I took an unnaturally long amount of time to write this, though I didn't time it and can't tell for sure.)