While you are immersed in a task on your keyboard, it can be a bother having to switch to the mouse to do something like save, highlight, or bold text. But there’s no reason to do that when there are keyboard shortcuts that will allow you to continue uninterrupted work on the keyboard.
This ultimate guide will give you all the essential shortcuts and a few cool ones to use while working in Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.
The most important one would be saving your document as you continue working. You don’t want to lose all your work just because you forgot to save. As you type or prepare a PowerPoint presentation or work on an Excel sheet, click Ctrl + S every now and then to save.
Now that you will never lose your work, let us learn some more shortcuts.
Ctrl + Shift + G: Do you want to see the word count and all the other details like the number of lines and characters? Go ahead and hit that combination. A popup will appear with all the statistics.
F5: If you have a large chunk of text and you’re looking for a particular section, instead of scanning through the entire document searching for a particular word in that section, simply press F5 and a search tool will appear. Type the word in the search box and you will be directed to that section with the word you typed highlighted. Another shortcut to achieve the same is Ctrl + F. You can use the same search tool to replace a particular word. For example, if you used the name Paul instead of Peter, you can type Paul in the search area and Peter where it says “Replace With.”
Shift + Right/ Shift + Left: Use this to highlight single characters at a time. You can use the arrow keys to get the cursor where you want it to be then either highlight characters to the left or the right. Shift + Down or Shift + Up can also be used to highlight in the corresponding directions.
Ctrl + B: Use this to bold text or remove bold.
Ctrl +I: Use this to change the style to italics or remove it.
Ctrl + U: Yes, you guessed it, this will underline or remove underline.
Shift + F3: Here is a cool one, use it to toggle between Capitalize Each Word and ALL CAPS and back to normal case. You will obviously have to highlight the words first. (it also comes in handy when you hit Caps Lock by mistake).
Ctrl + T: Do you want to quickly insert a table? Use this shortcut and you will be asked to choose the location of the data that will be entered into the table automatically.
Ctrl + ; / Ctrl + Shift + :: So you have a table and you would like to enter the date and time. The first shortcut will insert the date and Ctrl + Shift + : will insert the time.
Alt + H, B: Use this shortcut to create a border around a selected cell. You have to select the cells first.
Shift + Arrow: You can choose any arrow to navigate in the corresponding direction. This shortcut can help you navigate. To select a column, you can use Ctrl + Space while Shift + Space selects a complete row.
F2: We all trust Excel because of the formulas. Quickly get to the formula with this shortcut. You can then switch between cells to view the different formulas by clicking Ctrl+`. (that’s the key under Esc).
Ctrl + Backspace: If you find you have lost the active cell because somehow you ended up in an unfamiliar cell, this is the shortcut that will get you back to “civilization”. It will get you back to the active cell.
F5: Use this to start your slideshow from the beginning and if you wish to start from the slide you are currently viewing, use Ctrl+Shift+F5.
B: For a temporary break from the presentation maybe because you want the audience to focus on you, not the screen, this shortcut will provide a blank screen (Black). You can also use W to have a white screen.
Arrows: The arrows will help you navigate through the presentation. You can also use the + key to Zoom a slide and use the arrows to move the view in the direction you choose.
Ctrl + P: Don’t rush for the mouse to try and find the Pen tool, just use this shortcut and when you are done, press E.
Ctrl + A: This will bring up the cursor or whatever tool you were using and Ctrl + H will hide it.
Sometimes you just want to do something to impress or trick someone hovering over your computer. Try some of these cool shortcuts.
Windows Key + Left/Right: If you want to have two windows open side by side, use this shortcut. Send one window to the left and another to the right. This is also helpful if you are working on Word and using the internet for reference.
Windows Key + D: Switch from the window you are working on to the desktop and back using this shortcut. It can help you access a file or image saved on desktop.
Ctrl +A: This will select all. The keyboard shortcut works on Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Web, etc.
Ctrl + Z: You did something you didn’t intend to do? Simple, undo it with this shortcut.
Windows Key + M: Quickly minimize all the open windows. It helps if you have many people snooping to see what you are working on and when they are gone, Windows + Shift + M and everything will pop open again.
There are hundreds of other keyboard shortcuts that you can use, but these are helpful for common tasks that you may perform often and do not want to be bothered switching from keyboard to mouse or your mouse has a problem and you need to complete working on that document quickly. You also have the option of creating your own shortcuts, but that is a story for another blog.