Hi friends! Well, I have to share with you a “moment” I had yesterday. I went, like I do most nights, to log into the blog to write a post or check comments. When I hit the enter button to get to my site, I got redirected to this scary site with a screen of blue death that said:
This site is currently unavailable. If you are the owner of this site, please contact us at 1-480-505-8855 at your earliest convenience.
I immediately ran to my other computer to see if it was the same on that device. It was. Ugh oh. This did NOT sound good. Of course, instead of being calm, I immediately panicked. Like a sick person dangerously looking on Web MD for a diagnosis, I began to Google the issue. What I found make my heart pound out of my chest. I found things that said it meant my site was being falsely detected as malware and I found things saying I had been hacked. I then searched for what to do when your site gets hacked. Bad idea. This list told me to:
#1 Stay calm- CRAP!!! We are way beyond that!
#2 Install a firewall- WTF?? If I knew how to do that I probably wouldn’t have been hacked in the first place.
#3 Be mindful of website blacklists – just what I need, my barely surviving blog to be “blacklisted.”
#4 Take a back up of what you have left. At that point, I and went and looked at where I believed my blog had been backing up. Not much was there. I felt myself having a very Carrie Bradshaw moment from Sex and The City. “Did you back up your data? Umm I don’t do that. Apparently, everyone is secretly running home at night and backing up their work.”
#5 Find and remove the hack – Are there people you can pay to do this? My blog that I basically pay to run is going to cost me hundreds to fix- I don’t think so! The one thing about running this blog that is hard for me is the technology. I am afraid to touch or change anything because I am sooo not technical!
At the end of the article, it proposed deleting everything and starting over from scratch. I felt the weight of a ball in the pit of my stomach. All of the time and effort I put into this blog, gone to waste. All of the DIY projects, photo editing and writing, all gone.
That is where I started “Awfulizing” as they call it. Awfulizing is they by-product of irrational self-talk that turns everything into a worse-case scenario. My blog and all of the hard work behind it is gone, I should just give up now, my dreams are never going to come true, I am silly to think I could have a successful blog, I will never be successful. You see how it works. This is the type of overreacting that I tell my children is unacceptable, yet there I was engulfed in my own impending doom.
Finally, my husband (aka the voice of reason,) told me to just try and call my hosting provider. While lamenting that there was nothing they could do to help, I reluctantly picked up the phone and waited on hold (while continuing to have spiraling thoughts). When I got someone on the phone and told them what I was seeing when I went to my site, they immediately told me, “your site has been suspended for failure to pay fees.” Rarely, would I jump for joy at such news, but this was music to my ears. That was it??? Apparently, the credit card I had on file for auto-renew had just expired so they could not process my payment.
Within minutes my site was back up online. Crisis averted. But this situation told me a lot about my ability to be irrational and envision apocolyptic scenarios. There is something to be said about thinking positive. Even if I had been hacked, it was probably fixable.
Have you ever been guilty of awfulizing? I think it is my new favorite word! If so, do you have any tips for talking yourself down from the ledge?
So, as they say, I am off to breath and reboot!
Have a wonderful weekend!