I just got a Kinesis Advantage keyboard and want to remap Enter to Esc in insert mode in vim. I'm using iTerm2 as well.

Here's what I've got so far:

inoremap <CR> <Esc> inoremap jj <Esc> nnoremap <CR> i

On startup, this does not work: Enter enters insert mode, and in insert mode, jj exits insert mode. However, Enter does not exit from insert mode.

Then I reload my vimrc file:


And viola, my Enter key now exits insert mode and everything works fine.

Any thoughts on why this would be happening?


  • It is likely you have something overriding the mapping. What does ":verbose imap <cr>" show?
    – Heptite
    Aug 24, 2016 at 23:58
  • Aha, that's exactly what's happening. Before reloading, it reads: i <CR> * pumvisible() ? "\<C-N>" : "\<CR>" Last set from ~/vim/bundle/YouCompleteMe/autoload/youcompleteme.vim, and after: i <CR> * <Esc> Last set from ~/.vimrc. Thank you! Want to make an answer and I'll accept it? Aug 25, 2016 at 13:06

1 Answer 1


This happens when you have a plugin or other script sourced after your mapping is defined that overrides your mapping. The easiest way to find out which is to run this command:

:verbose imap <cr>

This will tell you what the key sequence is mapped to, and what script defined the mapping.

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