The Elusive “I”

If use an iPhone, or know someone who does, you’ve been affected by The Glitch.  It’s the annoying stack of bars or question marks littered throughout conversations online, in emails and text threads the world over, replacing that one simple character. . . “I”.   What should be a quick reply ends up taking 5 minutes to type because every time you need to insert “I” the text switches up on you and makes your sentence unreadable.  You backspace and retype, thinking you will catch that auto-correct in time, but no. . . still no “I”.

Like you, I’ve tried all the tricks shared online. 

I’ve agreed to update my phone software at least 3 nights in a row.  I actually thought it was mostly fixed.  From what “I” can see on my end, there is no longer a glitch.  But based on my teammate Heather’s reply to her experience of my messages last night, I’m still glitching and I can’t even see it.  But clearly, she can.  OH, the elusive “I”!

You know what I’ve learned from this annoying little glitch?

I say “I” a lot.  As the days passed, with this glitch at my fingertips, I’ve noticed that I’m subconsciously working to reword my sentences so that they don’t require the use of “I”.   There is no time for all of that hunting and pecking with the keyboard, so surely I can restate my thoughts without that word.  It can’t be that hard to just pick a different word.  Composing each message is like playing a round of Taboo, with myself, with “I” as taboo.

It’s been a fascinating experiment.

Granted, some messages just end up being nounless sentences like, “Haven’t done that yet” or “Heading to pick up the boys”.  But I’ve noticed that many times I’m able to replace the “I” with “we”.  And that’s a beautiful thing.  There have also been times, I’ve realized I don’t even need to say that thing about myself at all.  Entire sentences have been left off as a result.  It shifts my focus from thinking about me so much, to thinking about including others a little more.

I wonder what would happen if the “I” eluded us more often in our lives?  

We might have to rethink our responses.  We might need to reword our sentences.  It might cause us to realize how many things should actually be “we” instead of “me”.   It might even cause others who care about us to step up and say something, when we can’t even see our own glitches.

Think about it. 

As you type your “I’s” throughout the day, think about how you could say it differently.  Could it be less about you and more about them?  Let the elusive “I” cause you to think a little more about the people you’re communicating with today.  (Even if yours is already fixed)

Maybe this glitch was a little gift, in disguise.  

to more love,


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