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The advantages to use the keyboard shortcuts

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In the movies, when you see someone typing in the computer, or using it somehow, did you notice that the actors never use the mouse? This is even more evident in CSI. You maybe think that that is just film, and maybe it is, about it is also true that it is much efficient, practical and healthy to use the keyboard instead of the mouse.

Use more the keyboard! Use keyboard shortcuts :)

Use more the keyboard! Use keyboard shortcuts :)

Using the mouse can do Tendinitis

For people who are on the computer all day, there is a big change of having tendinitis, which is an inflammation of the tendon in the wrists. Using the mouse will increase the probability of inflammation of you tendons. Here is a good reason why you should start reducing the use of he mouse, and start betting on using the keyboard shortcuts :)

Work faster with keyboard shortcuts

Studies calculate that using keyboard shortcuts allows to work 10 times faster than working with the mouse. The time you spend looking for the mouse and then getting the cursor to the position you need is lost time! Reducing the working time by 10 brings you greater efficiency.

Use Function keys

The problem with keyboard shortcuts is that they can change from program to program or from language to language. For example some keyboard shortcuts in Microsoft Word are different in Microsoft Excel (it is a petty because they are both programs of Microsoft!). With different languages the same problem happens: Ctrl+S in portuguese corresponds to “underline”, while in english corresponds to “Save”.

To avoid this problems, there are the function keys whose meanings never change: they are the F1, F2. F3… till F12 that you have in one line at the top of your keyboard. For example, in Microsof Word, press F8 to select a word. Press it again and you’ll select the phrase. Press it again and you’ll select the paragraph. Press it again to select the whole page. Press Alt+F8 to undo each of the previous actions.

In resume...

So, start working with keyboard shortcuts. Choose, for example, to use a new keyboard shortcut every week. It seams very few, but like this you’ll know them by heart I would say forever. Also choose the keyboard shortcuts of those actions you use the most, specially repetitive actions, such as copy (Ctrl+C) and paste (Ctrl+V), or even to copy and paste the font format (Ctrl+Alt+C and Ctrl+Alt+V).

It does not mean that you should not use the mouse anymore. But reducing its use by replacing it with the use of keyboard shortcuts, will make your work easier, faster and healthier :)

Some useful keyboard shortcuts in Microsoft Word


CTRL+N - Create a new document of the same type as the current or most recent document

CTRL+O - Open a document

CTRL+W - Close a document

ALT+CTRL+S - Split the document window

ALT+SHIFT+C - Remove the document window split

CTRL+S - Save a document

CTRL+F - Find text, formatting, and special items

ALT+CTRL+Y - Repeat find (after closing Find and Replace window)

CTRL+H - Replace text, specific formatting, and special items

CTRL+G - Go to a page, bookmark, footnote, table, comment, graphic, or other location

ALT+CTRL+Z - Go back to a page, bookmark, footnote, table, comment, graphic, or other location

Scroll to Continue

ALT+CTRL+HOME Browse through a document

ESC Cancel an action

CTRL+Z Undo an action

CTRL+Y Redo or repeat an action

ALT+CTRL+P Switch to print layout view

ALT+CTRL+O Switch to outline view

ALT+CTRL+N Switch to normal view

CTRL+SHIFT+C Copy formatting from text

CTRL+SHIFT+V Apply copied formatting to text

CTRL+SHIFT+F Change the font

CTRL+SHIFT+P Change the font size

CTRL+SHIFT+> Increase the font size

CTRL+SHIFT+< Decrease the font size

CTRL+] Increase the font size by 1 point

CTRL+[ Decrease the font size by 1 point

CTRL+D Change the formatting of characters (Font command, Format menu)

SHIFT+F3 Change the case of letters

CTRL+SHIFT+A Format letters as all capitals

CTRL+B Apply bold formatting

CTRL+U Apply an underline

CTRL+SHIFT+W Underline words but not spaces

CTRL+SHIFT+D Double-underline text

CTRL+SHIFT+H Apply hidden text formatting

CTRL+I Apply italic formatting

CTRL+SHIFT+K Format letters as small capitals

CTRL+EQUAL SIGN Apply subscript formatting (automatic spacing)

CTRL+SHIFT+PLUS SIGN Apply superscript formatting (automatic spacing)

CTRL+SPACEBAR Remove manual character formatting

CTRL+SHIFT+Q Change the selection to the Symbol font

CTRL+SHIFT+*(asterisk) Display nonprinting characters

CTRL+SHIFT+C Copy formats

CTRL+SHIFT+V Paste formats

CTRL+1 Single-space lines

CTRL+2 Double-space lines

CTRL+5 Set 1.5-line spacing

CTRL+0 (zero) Add or remove one line space preceding a paragraph


Some useful keyboard shortcuts in Microsoft Excel


CTRL+( Unhides any hidden rows within the selection.

CTRL+) Unhides any hidden columns within the selection.

CTRL+& Applies the outline border to the selected cells.

CTRL+_ Removes the outline border from the selected cells.

CTRL+$ Applies the Currency format with two decimal places (negative numbers in


CTRL+% Applies the Percentage format with no decimal places.

CTRL+- Displays the Delete dialog box to delete the selected cells.

CTRL+' Copies a formula from the cell above the active cell into the cell or the Formula Bar.

CTRL+" Copies the value from the cell above the active cell into the cell or the Formula Bar.

CTRL++ Displays the Insert dialog box to insert blank cells.

CTRL+1 Displays the Format Cells dialog box.

CTRL+2 Applies or removes bold formatting.

CTRL+3 Applies or removes italic formatting.

CTRL+4 Applies or removes underlining.

CTRL+5 Applies or removes strikethrough.

CTRL+6 Alternates between hiding objects, displaying objects, and displaying placeholders for objects.

CTRL+7 Displays or hides the Standard toolbar.

CTRL+8 Displays or hides the outline symbols.

CTRL+9 Hides the selected rows.

CTRL+0 Hides the selected columns.

CTRL+A Selects the entire worksheet.

CTRL+B Applies or removes bold formatting.

CTRL+C Copies the selected cells.

CTRL+D Uses the Fill Down command to copy the contents and format of the topmost cell of a selected range into the cells below.

CTRL+F Displays the Find dialog box.

SHIFT+F5 also displays this dialog box, while SHIFT+F4 repeats the last Find


CTRL+G Displays the Go To dialog box.

F5 also displays this dialog box.

CTRL+H Displays the Find and Replace dialog box.

CTRL+I Applies or removes italic formatting.

CTRL+K Displays the Insert Hyperlink dialog box for new hyperlinks or the Edit Hyperlink dialog box for selected existing hyperlinks.

CTRL+L Displays the Create List dialog box.

CTRL+N Creates a new, blank file.

CTRL+O Displays the Open dialog box to open or find a file.

CTRL+P Displays the Print dialog box.

CTRL+R Uses the Fill Right command to copy the contents and format of the leftmost cell of a selected range into the cells to the right.

CTRL+S Saves the active file with its current file name, location, and file format.

CTRL+U Applies or removes underlining.

CTRL+V Inserts the contents of the Clipboard at the insertion point and replaces any

selection. Available only after you cut or copied an object, text, or cell contents.

CTRL+W Closes the selected workbook window.

CTRL+X Cuts the selected cells.

CTRL+Y Repeats the last command or action, if possible.

CTRL+Z Uses the Undo command to reverse the last command or to delete the last entry you typed.




NemoPDF on August 10, 2011:

the most used combine keys for me is CTRL+A, CTRL+B,CTRL+C,


thanks for sharing.

eonsaway from New Mexico, USA on July 23, 2009:

Thanks, I need this being new to using a computer [one year]. It's bookmarked.

caoshub (author) from Portugal on July 16, 2009:

Yes, it's a bit hard at the begining, but hen you get freat results :)

James A Watkins from Chicago on July 16, 2009:

I never really knew about all these shortcuts. I am going to bookmark this Hub and keep it for future reference. I would love to use my mouse much less than I do now. Thank you very much.

caoshub (author) from Portugal on July 10, 2009:

Hi, Thanks for your comment. I've improved my work very much with shortcuts :) Its really worth to try

goformicheal from USA on July 09, 2009:

Very Good tutorials for Keyword ShortCutt Key I know the shortcut key you wrote very good about this and nice tutorials as well

caoshub (author) from Portugal on July 09, 2009:

Great. I'm an enthusiastic of using shortcuts too. Thanks for your comments.

Jen's Solitude from Delaware on July 09, 2009:

Great hub caoshub! I bookmarked it for future reference. I am one of those who always wanted to learn keyboard strokes. Your article has convinced me to try by learning a couple at a time. Thanks for all the shortcuts you included in this hub.


Gypsy Willow from Lake Tahoe Nevada USA , Wales UK and Taupo New Zealand on July 09, 2009:

Useful info thanks

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