How can most mistakes be reversed?

The Undo Keyboard Shortcut - That shouldn't have happened

A brief inattentive moment and a whole text passage is deleted ... The key combination to undo is your salvation.

A file has been moved to an unknown location or the already shaky formatting in your document is completely messed up.

Usually a shiver runs down your spine because at that moment your brain switches on again and reports that it wasn't good at all.


Fortunately, most programs have an "undo" function for this. Often it is hidden behind a small button with a curved arrow pointing to the left. Based on the fact that we are writing from right to left, the arrow indicates that this is how you come "back".

And that's the right keyword, because with Ctrl + Z like "Do back" the last action is reversed. Fortunately, this saving function no longer only applies to text but also to formatting, moving and even "deleting" files (if you use the "recycle bin").

To top it off, in most cases you can undo it several times in a row, so that mistakes that were made recently can still be undone.

But don't go back

And for the opportunity that you "Do back" once too often, there is even a way to undo it. Use the key combination Ctrl + Y to move forward in the undo timeline.

It takes more than just a little imagination to invent a mnemonic with 'Y'. First of all, a word is used here, the first letter of which is similar, at least in terms of sound. It is the word "takeover" because the undone change should now be taken over. That’s the mnemonic "Take over". I look forward to suggestions for mnemonics in the comments. ;)

Update: Many thanks to Lemon for her idea that Y comes before Z and therefore the memo "Do what was before Ctrl + Z" should read. It's really easier to remember.

Incidentally, undoing changes is as common as copying and pasting. So don't be shy, most small mistakes can be reversed.

Last but not least, the summary of the two time travel combinations.

Ctrl + Z"Do zback "Undoes the last change.
Ctrl + YDo what was before Ctrl + ZRestores a previously undone change.