I’m taking an unscheduled break this week from my series of blogs on how to improve your productivity, project confidence and feel comfortable with your computer posture. Here’s why.
After I published last week’s blog I posted it, as usual, in various places on the Internet, such as Facebook and Twitter. I also posted it into that little used social media site, Google Plus. When doing so, I noticed something unusual. In the excerpt that pops up, instead of the text from my blog post, I saw a lot of vulgar language. The alarm bells rang, and on further investigation I found out that many pages on my site were linking to pornographic material and NOT to my own pages and posts. Worse still, I found that it not only affected this website, but also my other websites, imogenragone.com, alexandertechniquewebsites.com and alextechgreaterphila.com (which I manage for a group of local Alexander Technique teachers).
I was very upset to say the least.
And it took me two whole days to get things resolved.
First I tried to solve it for myself. In fact, I felt rather pleased with myself because at least a couple of years ago I’d put into place a back up system, and was able to restore all the sites to an earlier version.
Initially I thought this had done the trick, but the next day the links to porn started popping up again. To make matters worse, the back up system no longer worked on at least two of the sites.
I researched further on the web, “chatted” online with my web host (HostMonster) who, I must admit, were not very helpful, and spent probably the best part of two hours on the phone with my friend and colleague Robert Rickover, who kindly tried to help me.
But even with his help and technical expertise, nothing worked.
I had done all the right things. I have strong usernames and passwords on all my WordPress websites (which they all are), I do regular backups, and keep my version of WordPress and the plugins I use up to date.
I was frustrated, upset, humiliated, and annoyed.
Despite the body intelligence skills at my disposal, I know my posture and breathing were compromised. (I also know, however, that I would have been even more tense and anxious without them.)
I felt violated, personally and professionally.
Finally, I called HostMonster to speak to their website security partner, SiteLock. This was no time to play around. I needed the experts.
What a relief it was to hear their assurances and let them sort it out. I paid a lot of money for the privilege, but I was ready, and in the circumstance it was worth it. By the next morning all my sites were clean, and SiteLock will be providing security for them over the coming months to prevent any recurrence.
I highly value self-sufficiency and self-responsibility in general and in my work. The goal of Body Intelligence is indeed to give my clients the tools to be able to self-manage themselves in all manner of situations.
An important part of that, however, is knowing when to ask for help, when to call in the experts.
Part of me lamented spending the best part of two days trying to fix my website problem. Why didn’t I get the experts in from the beginning? Sometimes, however, we need to really understand why we need help in order to justify it. I wonder if I’d have so willingly paid what was necessary if I hadn’t been clear I couldn’t solve it on my own? I guess sometimes we just have to go through that first.
Often we first get a business coach when things are going wrong or are not progressing as we want them to, or there’s an aspect to business we need specific help on. When there’s a crisis it’s obvious we need help, but sometimes we delay asking for the help we need until it reaches that point. At other times, support from friends or colleagues is enough.
My business – BodyIntelligence – is even more fundamental than that. Based on the Alexander Technique, I provide coaching on how to use your self – body and mind – optimally at home and at work, in your business and your life. It makes me wonder, would you need a personal or professional crisis before you’d consider getting expert help?
As with website security, preventing a crisis in the first place might just be the best option! Better still, as well as preventing the crisis, invest in the biggest asset your business (and your life) has – YOU – so you are empowered to function at your best whatever you do.
And for those of you with websites, please be sure to have strong usernames and passwords, keep WordPress itself and your plugins updated, do back ups, and think about investing in extra security for your site too. I recommend AlexTechHost.com to anyone who builds a website with me, because of the extra back ups and security measures Robert puts into place. It’s a shame I didn’t host there too (I set up my hosting before Robert offered this service!). It’s no guarantee, but I suspect I wouldn’t have had this crisis if I did.
Next time, we’ll return to our regularly scheduled program as I’ll resume my blog series on how to improve your computer posture (not unrelated to how you react to technical crisis, of course), and specifically I’ll be looking at how our thoughts influence it for better or for worse – something I was aware of a lot this past week.
If you have any comments or experiences you’d like to share about your own technical crises and how you got through them, I’d love to hear from you in the space below.
Image courtesy of hywards at FreeDigitalPhotos.net.